The Wharton Global Consulting Practicum (WGCP) is part of the IMBA+ and a very competitive project where five International MBA students from IE Business School and five from The Wharton School, worked together in order to develop a strategic plan for a Spanish company looking to enter or consolidate in the US market.
Ron Schnackenberg a current student of the International MBA program, Class of 2010, was selected to participate in this competitive project.
What made you want to apply to the Wharton Global Consulting Practicum?
This was a tremendous opportunity to become a member of a selected group of students from both IE and Wharton. Consulting is an industry that I am very interested in after graduation and felt this was the perfect platform for me to get real consulting experience.
How is the program structured and how long does it last?
We launched the project in November, we virtually met our teammates from The Wharton School and began discussing our vision of the project. Our Wharton teammates arrived to Madrid on the 31st of December and we spent the following week breaking down the scope of the project. We had two client meetings where we discussed their goals and aligned our scope around those goals. It was a week filled with a lot of work but we accomplished the objectives and managed to have a lot of fun as well. The project will conclude at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia on the 14th of May 2011.
How much time does this take and how do you organize around your regular class schedule?
The time commitment is rather significant, I spent approximately 10 hours per week on the project including a weekly conference call with the team and a bi-weekly call with our client. I scheduled it around my other classes simply by staying up and completing work after my regular class work. I was worried about the work load and time constraints and even then the amount of work exceeded what I was expecting. Time management will be a mastered art by the end of this project!
Would you recommend other classmates or incoming students to apply to the Wharton Global Consulting Practicum?
100% yes, I feel this will be an invaluable part of my educational experience here at IE. As the business world continues to become more and more global the chances of working with international partners or groups becomes higher and higher. There is no other way to get that real experience other than doing this project. Internships and studying abroad will introduce you to various working environments however the WGCP forces you to get organized and work efficiently with others you have never met. Establishing common goals and creating group cohesion is difficult in a regular workgroup, we must do this in a very short amount of time and in a virtual setting. It is a lot of extra work but I believe the experience and the relationships I create will be carried with me far beyond the IMBA program.
What is your professional background and what are some of the profiles of your teammates?
I came to IE after many years of running my own boutique real estate firm. My firm specializes in representing high net-worth and high profile clients acquire or sell very rare properties around the world. I came to IE to gain additional international experience and exposure to various markets. The team has a very wide range of both personalities and careers. The profile of my teammates range from Google to a Top Gun flight instructor to a renewable energy mogul, everyone brings so much experience and expertise to the project. I am very impressed with everyone in the group.
To learn more about the Wharton Global Consuling Practicum click here.