Anastassia Chouryguina
IMBA candidate, 2016

I joined the IMBA program in September 2014. My decision to apply was very quick and somewhat last minute – a very unusual behaviour for me. But in life I’ve realized that some of the most memorable experiences are unplanned – and the IMBA was proof of that.

I chose the International MBA because it just felt right. At the time, going abroad to work and on exchange seemed like unfathomable opportunities, yet I’ve lived through both!

Although finding a job abroad was difficult, I’ve had the great opportunity to live in London, England and work on the Jeep brand as a Communications Support Specialist this past summer. My job entailed ensuring that all communications material such as print/digital/dealer ads were correct, overseeing the creation of monthly newsletters and communication material regarding promotions and contests, managing communications with our sponsored athletes, and much more.

A highlight from my work involved the latest print ad. My assignment was to find substantiation for the fact the Jeep was the original SUV in order to run the ad. I successfully found adequate research and presented my findings to the company’s legal department, and UK Jeep ended up running with the concept after I left.The experience truly showed me how important company culture is when looking for a job. Working at Jeep was very fast-paced and stressful, but having the right team made it one of the most amazing experiences of my career. I even got teary on my last day and I still miss the UK Jeep team.

Currently, I am on exchange at ESSEC Business School in Paris. While living in France has been eventful and exciting to say the least, being abroad has also allowed me to learn to appreciate my home – Toronto.


5 IMBA Highlights with Anastassia:

  1. One all-time favourite place visited:
    Out of the places I’ve visited so far, I’d rank my favourites as follows:
    a. Edinburgh, Scotland [Gothic, full of history, loved everything!]
    b. Barcelona, Spain [Beautiful people, beautiful language, interesting architecture]
    c. London, England [Posh!, historic, amazing shopping and tea time!]
    d. Paris, France [Amazing landmarks]
  2. One lesson learned working abroad: The great thing about living in Europe is that it’s so much easier to travel! I’ll be going to Amsterdam, Rome, Florence, and Venice later this year.
  3. One experience or moment abroad that had a huge impact on me: I have to mention a moment I had in the highlands of Scotland. Our driver pulled to the top of the mountain, where you have a full view of the highlands with fog covering the mountain top. When I got out of the car and looked around, my body almost dropped backwards…I’ve never seen such beauty in my life. It felt as if this wave of energy was coming from the mountains. Really made me realize how little we are in this world and how much more there is to see.
  4. One sentence that summarizes the value of an IMBA: Overall, the value of the IMBA in Schulich comes from the experiences you have while at school and abroad. You meet, work and learn with lots of different people and many of them will probably become your lifelong friends. This has to be a guarantee…because if I (a self-described socially lazy individual) can create lifelong friendships, then any other busy, working IMBA can too! 😉
  5. One piece of advice to students considering an IMBA: My only advice would be to truly enjoy this experience. You may come across some of the most unexpected events happening in your life while at Schulich…at least I have. Just accept and embrace everything – life is too short.