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MBA Bobcat Q&A: Luke van Oort

Wednesday, October 4 2017 12:00am

MBA graduate, Luke van Oort shares how the program equipped him with skills that will add value to his future career and personal brand.

Vanoort Luke

By: Amanda Byrd

Name: Luke Van Oort

Program: MBA/MSA

Class Year: 2017/2018

Undergraduate Degree: Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences

Why did you choose Ohio University’s MBA/MSA dual-degree program?

My professor at the University of Applied Sciences in Amsterdam, Mr. Frank Kolsteeg, was a graduate of Ohio University’s '95 MSA cohort. I told him about my lifelong dream to pursue a master’s degree in the United States and he suggested Ohio University- a great academic institution and network for my future career. Thankfully I was accepted into this program and have not looked back since.

What was the biggest cultural difference when you moved to Ohio?

The biggest culture shock initially was the scale of everything. Even though Amsterdam is a large city, most of our houses and stores are very small compared to the United States. Everything here is larger in terms of travel distance, store size, and available options for the consumer. It’s a very different feeling at home compared to here, though one I do enjoy.

How would you describe your experience in the MBA program?

It’s been challenging, but worth every minute and ounce of effort. The year flies by due to the sheer number of assignments and activities we are tackling at one time. The comradery you build with your classmates is incredible because you are all working together as a team. I still talk to many of my classmates on a weekly basis, just to catch up, even though we have all completed the program.

What was your favorite MBA course and why?

Strategic Leadership by Dr. Crawford. He used real-life case examples in order to help us to figure out what we would do in certain situations. It gave insight into dilemmas we may face in the future and demonstrated the scope to which our decisions affect others. I think this course will be one that I will refer to most in my future career. It taught me valuable lessons that I will utilize in my leadership positions moving forward.

Which College of Business mentor/faculty/staff member has had a positive influence on your education?

Dr. Jason Stoner, professor for Organizational Behavior. He is an incredible intellectual professor who not only showed interest in my grades, but also helping me develop as a person. He offered career-specific advice about how to work in a team setting and navigate with ethical situations. I didn’t feel like just a number in Dr. Jason Stoner’s class, rather I felt like I was a valued individual. He exceeded my expectations of a professor during my time in the MBA program.

What would you tell someone considering Ohio University’s Masters of Business Administration degree?

Get ready for an extremely exciting and rewarding year! Time management is key.  The classes and cohort provide a strong foundation and network for future career opportunities. The program will enhance your personal business skills and provide you with all the tools necessary to add value to an organization. Athens is a great place and the campus offers a lot of unique opportunities to get out and explore.

What are your career goals, and how did you figure out what you wanted to do?

My dream job is to work for the UEFA or FIFA in the executive committee, overseeing all soccer-related issues and opportunities to improve the game. Coming from Europe, soccer is by far the largest sport and with my love for the game, academic background, and network here at Ohio University, I know I am on the right track to reach my goal. In the United States soccer is rapidly gaining popularity and youth participation rates are increasing. There is large opportunity and potential for growth. Being in the States while this growth is happening will ultimately benefit me and hopefully I will be able to continue learning from those in the industry.

Where is your favorite place to hang out on campus/in Athens?

I love to hang out anywhere on Court Street. It is the liveliest street in Athens, with multiple restaurants, bars, and shops that accommodate everyone’s needs. Just off of Court Street is Jackie O's, a local brewery with amazing beers and tremendous food. It is a one-of-a-kind atmosphere that everyone should experience for themselves!

Is there anything else about the program you would like to share?

Obtaining an MBA from Ohio University will add value to your future career and personal brand. The program will at times be demanding, but in the end will push you to grow and equip you with the necessary skillset to succeed in the business world. Lastly, do not forget to take time to enjoy all that Athens has to offer. It is beautiful, unique, and home to many successful people in all industries. One day, you will fall into that category as well!