MBA Strategic Consulting Program: Experiential Learning at Foster

Foster offers students numerous opportunities to apply concepts learned in the classroom in the real world. One example is the MBA Strategic Consulting Program, which allows students to analyze challenges facing leading companies and provide them with insightful, innovative recommendations. Just last year, Foster MBA students completed the following projects:

  • Market research and positioning for Nissan in the PNW market.
  • Carbon offset strategies to stabilize emissions with carbon-neutral growth for Alaska Airlines.
  • Customer journey mapping and marketing recommendations for Office 365.
  • Marketing strategies to drive small business refresh of Microsoft/Dell products.
  • Expansion strategy and framework to evaluate new market opportunities for a lunch delivery start-up.
Jennifer Bauermeister, Director of the MBA Strategic Consulting Program
Jennifer Bauermeister, Director of the MBA Strategic Consulting Program

Jennifer Bauermeister leads the MBA Strategic Consulting Program. A Foster graduate herself, she is uniquely positioned to connect students with companies to strategically address business challenges while enriching the MBA academic experience.

What brought you to Foster? What are your responsibilities as the Director of the MBA Strategic Consulting Program?

One reason I came to Foster is I was interested in pursuing an advanced degree myself and thought that it might be easier if I worked on campus. I started at Foster in 2011 working with the Consulting & Business Development Center managing several programs including Board Fellows and undergraduate consulting internships. I started the Foster Executive MBA program in 2013, but while finishing my MBA had the opportunity to transition to work for the Strategic Consulting Program. As the Director of that Program I am responsible for sourcing, managing, and evaluation of consulting projects for MBA students.

 Why did you choose Foster as a professional?

I chose Foster because I felt drawn to working at an educational institution. I stayed at Foster because I truly enjoy working with students and because Foster has continually provided me opportunities to grow in my own career.

What sets Foster Evening MBA students apart?

Foster evening students are some of the hardest working students I meet. They are willing to take on numerous challenges and somehow balance it all.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

The most rewarding part of my job is when I get to watch students present their final recommendations to companies, and the companies are incredibly impressed with how well our students have performed. It is especially wonderful when our students outperform paid consultants who have worked on the same issue, often for years! (Yes- this does happen.)

Second and third-year Evening MBA students presented a joint marketing strategy for Dell and Microsoft in the spring of 2016
Second and third-year Evening MBA students presented a joint marketing strategy for Dell and Microsoft in the spring of 2016

What is the most challenging part of your job?

Many companies reach out to me looking for students to help them with their businesses. Sometimes MBA students are a great fit for the challenges they face. Other times, the companies are not quite ready for the type of work MBAs can perform. I am always working to find other resources for these companies, whether it is inside or outside the Foster and UW community.

What is Foster’s competitive advantage?

Our students. We attract a diverse, intelligent and thoughtful group of students who are consistently willing to help each other, their school, and the community.

What do you appreciate the most about the Foster community?

The Foster community does a great job of nurturing a collaborative and supportive learning environment.

What is one interesting fact most people don’t know about you that you would like to share?

I am a top level reviewer on Trip Advisor.

Wondering if the Foster Evening MBA Program is the right fit for you? To make an appointment with the Foster MBA Programs Office, call 206-543-4661 or toll free at 1-866-778-9622, or email us at mba@uw.edu.

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