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MBA, Opening South American Markets

Upon graduating with an MBA, and a solid foundation of theoretical understanding in international business, I aim to work for a large-scale transnational technology company, utilizing my unique background, bilingual abilities and decade of experience in the field, to enhance or establish an international business department, focusing our energies on transferring technologies to Latin American companies.

This in effect is my own career objective, but the meaning and contribution I will be making to the development of emerging Latin American countries cannot be underscored enough. Moreover, I will be aiding in breaking down the ingrained fear most American companies have of open markets with Latin America. There is a certain measure of prejudice against Latin American products, which are incorrectly viewed as being substandard. There is an unsubstantiated belief that in order to reciprocate through open market business, American markets would be flooded with poorly manufactured or designed technologies.

For almost a decade, I maintained a conceptual continuity in my own industrial equipment business, raising sales from zero to XXX, and earning a good reputation in the small market, and setting up a small administrative structure that is still in use today some two years later. In addition, I have acted as a training suppler, serving small and mid size companies in the industry. Because of my experiences, I am well versed in directing, planning, organizing and stock and quality control issues. I never learned such interpersonal skills as being persuasive and convincing in my work, I learned it through doing. Before I knew the meaning of the word brainstorm, I was conducting brainstorming sessions with groups of employees. Through practice, I gained command over many fundamentals that simply can only be introduced, but never practiced in the lecture hall.

Through my own company, I have traveled many times to the US to attend training courses as well as several Latin American countries, attending trade shows and seminars. Having been born in Bogota, Colombia and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, and was educated in South America, I am able to connect easily with other Latinos and Hispanics. Building trust and representation on both sides of the border, through authorized distributions from American companies, I have sold products and given training to industries across Venezuela.

Once I have established my contacts and deepened my understanding of the practical concerns surrounding international trade, and technology transference, particularly between developed and emerging nations, I anticipate establishing my own company. The ideal would be to work in partnership with mid-size US technology manufacturers and service providers, exporting technology to mid to large-scale Latin American companies almost exclusively, and on a larger scale than I have before.

More importantly, my company will establish an information network that connects mid-size US manufacturing firms with mid to large-scale Latin American companies. Through this exchange, technical knowledge can be shared, and increased sustainable, viable and practical solutions can be more easily discovered, and implemented, leading to a more fluid transition from concept to market. Costs of production can therefore be lowered and the savings passed on to the consumer, making companies more competitive, particularly for Latin American manufacturers. I envision there will be a dispelling of prejudices born of ignorance between the people who run or work for these firms, a greater understanding, respect and partnership through cooperative efforts.

Throughout my experiences, both inside the lecture hall and in terms of putting theory into practice, I have seen very few instances in which the small business world interacts with the academic world. Only in the case of large companies where organization, well defined/refined methods and experience collaborate and work together towards the common goal of developing efficiency in their processes and achieving increased levels of success. I feel that, post-graduation, I can be instrumental in finding a common ground or point of connection where the academic and professional worlds can work together. Indeed, each would be guaranteeing the future of the other, in a symbiotic fashion, furthering good business, being role models for burgeoning business students, as well as providing practical real-world case studies for examination.

In the most practical terms, I bring with me to International Business a genuine love for math and statistics, and firmly believe that quantitative sciences could help the social sciences to be more effective. Continuing my work in the importing/exporting of products and services, I feel drawn to the financial and statistical indicators applied to international trade as a tool for working in specific environments.

In truth, my love of math and physics has overflowed into my volunteerism. During my spare time, I volunteer at public schools, teaching teenagers math, physics and science classes. There is a need to inspire children to develop and utilize their aptitudes for the sciences and math. As a Latino, I am able to reach out to Hispanic/Latino teens, my own teenage daughters included, showing them as a role model and living proof that hard work, perseverance and a goal-oriented mindset can lead to a very successful life, one that will in turn allow them to make valuable contributions to their communities through volunteerism, activism, and advocacy.

Teaching children has made me aware of the fact that the issues I faced as a child and young adult persist, such as acculturation, poverty, childcare inadequacies, racism, discrimination, and language issues. Through my example, I hope I inspire these children to go forth to make something of themselves, to not fall into the trap of gangs or negativity, rather becoming active in their own communities. I have learned a great deal about teens in the US and Venezuela. The common impression I have gotten about teens in both countries is that they believe that they are born into a world where everything has already been invented, and in turn, there is a general malaise, a belief that they can do little to alter realities in the world. My self-chosen mission is to prove them wrong, to show them the other side of the arguments, and get them motivated to go out there an be advocates for change.

In concert with my academic foundation, practical experiences and cultural competency, I bring my humility. Emigrating to the States changed my lifestyle and my career tenfold. From managing my own business with five employees, to becoming a restaurant employee in the US, delivering Chinese food and washing dishes taught me humility, and an appreciation for the immigrant and acculturation experience. I bring with me inner strength and confidence in my abilities. Leaving my wife and two children behind while I spent two years in a foreign land, studying and preparing for the XXX and XXX, was an emotional, psychological and physical marathon. Building a better life for my family, a life they deserve, taught me to keep my eyes firmly on my dreams. Now when I look into the eyes of the immigrant, I see that same intensity, that absolute need to succeed at all costs.

The Sykes College promises an excellent student to teacher ratio, and an accomplished student body, giving me the extraordinary opportunity to share my own analyses, test others, come to unexpected conclusions and learn that much more from the collective meeting of ambitious minds. I completely embrace the fact that there is more than one leadership method, that there is ample room for improvement in my own style and what better place to learn such lessons than in the classroom, where the consequences of failure do not translate into millions of dollars lost. It is in the classroom where our missteps can be turned into learning experiences, and in study time, we can reflect on our interactions, integrating them into our own distinctive path. Thank you for your time and consideration.

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