Chibueze Ewuzie









By Chibueze Ewuzie

Meet the Oxford MBA Class of 2021-22: Chibueze Ewuzie

We are excited to welcome the Oxford MBA Class of 2021-22 to Oxford this September. Get to know our incoming students in this blog post series as they prepare to join Saïd Business School.

Tell us about yourself

Sector/Industry you worked in pre-MBA: Finance

Sector/Industry you are hoping to work in post-MBA: Technology, consulting and social impact

Country of residence before coming to Oxford: Nigeria

College: Linacre

In one word, how would your best friend describe you, and how would your manager describe you?

Best friend: Honest
Manager: Ambitious

Tell us about where you have come from and what has led you to Oxford, and more specifically, the Oxford MBA.

Growing up as a child, my parents set high expectations for me as their first because they believed my siblings would take after me and that became my reality. I always aimed higher that my peers and when I didn’t measure up by my standards, I realized in hindsight that I would’ve still achieved something remarkable and this wasn’t different in deciding to study at Oxford. I wanted to set a good example for my siblings and prove to them that whatever they put their minds to, they could achieve.

Having spent the last 8 years in the banking sector of Nigeria, I discovered that I was drawn to youth capacity development activities through volunteering and an innate capacity to offer career advice and mentorship to young professionals. Inspired by my personal experience with unemployment, I co-founded a career accelerator initiative that connects youths from disadvantaged communities to their dream jobs through skills development. However it didn’t seem like something I could make a career out of and so I sought the skills that could transition me to a career in social impact by leveraging technology.

I chose the Oxford MBA program because of its focus on grooming the talent that will accelerate Africa’s economic development and its resolve to promote African representation within the program. While its world class reputation and rich history were notable considerations for my choice, I longed to belong to its elite alumni association and connect to its vast professional network across the globe, something I’m certain my siblings would be proud of.

What have you done to prepare yourself for the MBA?

I have waited for this opportunity for a long time, so I feel ready to immerse myself in the experience having understood the pro and cons of it all. Getting married to the love of my life is one step I’ve taken to prepare for this experience because as a family man, I believe that the stability of the home front is crucial to outward success.

I am taking time to streamline my goals for the program so I can avoid distractions. From my engagement with past students, I understand that it is easy to be pulled in different directions because the program offers so many opportunities that can become distractions from one’s ultimate goal.

Finally, I’m spending time with my family as much as I can because I would be away from them for a while therefore, I cherish every opportunity we get to spend together while praying as a family for a successful time during the program.

What do you hope to gain from completing your MBA?

The program offers a plethora of opportunities and I hope to leverage every one of them that aligns with my career goals. I hope to build lifelong friendships, explore life in the UK and have a great time.

I hope to represent my country Nigeria as much as I can through things I’m passionate about such as food, fashion, and music, and hopefully get my cohort to fall in love with this country that’s arguably home to some of the most creative, beautiful and hardworking people on the planet.

Ultimately, I hope to discover innovative ways to drive the career acceleration of African youths from disadvantaged backgrounds and create opportunities for them in collaboration with stakeholders focused on job-creating industries in Africa.

What is the best advice you received before commencing your MBA?

The best advice I have received before the program was to spend quality time with family as much as possible before the program commences. While it sounds scary, I think it speaks to the rigor of the program which isn’t strange to me since I am a skilled multi-tasker, however every moment I spend with my family is greatly cherished because I strive for success because of them.

Do you have any advice about the Oxford MBA application process for candidates thinking of applying?

My first advice would be to start early and seek help from people who have walked in the shoes you’re about to walk in. Mentorship is a hack for success during applications, and every candidate should seek it.

Secondly, you mustn’t have figured out your career path entirely before applying to the program however your applications should speak convincingly to where you hope to arrive at and what you have been doing to get there. Ensure that your essays address a unique problem and speak in the language that demonstrates your understanding of that problem and what realistic way you are fixing it with the resources at your disposal. It helps that you have had a personal experience dealing with this problem as it serves as motivation for why you seek to solve it.

The Oxford MBA program is for professionals who are running but seek to fly, so if you’re not started on your journey then the program might not be a good fit for you.

Lastly, be relatable. Your experiences might be unique to you but they are not entirely unheard of, so be honest and don’t forget to “toot your horn” where necessary because you’re special and the world deserves to know it.

Best of luck!

What part of the programme are you most looking forward to?

The part I am most excited about is connecting with my cohort from over 60 countries globally. I am thrilled by the opportunities that this experience presents and the learnings I will get from them. I am convinced that my life will never remain the same, and I am very fortunate about that.

What do you think will be the most challenging part of the programme?

Being away from my family and friends. I’d miss the food, events, parties, weddings, church services, the craziness of living in Lagos (not so much lol), but I am comforted by the thought of meeting new people and exploring new cultures.

How do you plan to take the learnings from the MBA to influence positive change?

My career interests are underscored by years of leadership experience ideating and executing social impact initiatives for the private sector, civil society organizations, and as a social entrepreneur, that is focused on supporting the next generation of African leaders.

So, I hope to strengthen my leadership skills so I can better amplify the voices of impact leaders leading the charge to deepen access to quality education and the creation of decent jobs across underserved communities in Nigeria.

I plan to build long-lasting and meaningful networks and connect with action-oriented professionals within and outside the MBA community who share similar interests in the development of Africa.

Are there any sport teams, societies, or clubs you’re hoping to become a member of?

There is so much to explore here at Oxford and, that is a fascinating thing, so I’d take my time to decide on the ones I would eventually get involved in. I picked up cycling early this year, so I would be looking to explore that sport however be rest assured that I plan to take full advantage of every opportunity this school has to offer.

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