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Student Spotlight: Jondell Stephens MBA '17

14 Aug

While pursuing his Online MBA from William & Mary, class of 2017 graduate Jondell Stephens realized the easiest way to solving a problem rarely actually solves the problem. The W&M Online MBA program challenges students to recognize the true root of their “wicked problems” and to rethink their approach to addressing them, so they can determine the most effective result for their organization.

“We’re working in a world that needs someone who can solve problems, not just someone who can supervise people,” explains Jondell in our video below.

Hear more about his W&M experience and how the program can help you become a better leader and a better person.

Getting your MBA Online - Jondell Stephens class of 2017
Getting your MBA Online - Jondell Stephens class of 2017
Getting your MBA Online - Jondell Stephens class of 2017

Video Transcript

Jondell Stephens:
I'm Jondell Stephens. I'm graduating Class of 2017 from the online MBA program. Initially, I pursued my MBA just to check a box, honestly. I was at another program, at another school, and had kind of gotten to the point to where I felt like it was a waste. I was looking for a program that would push me to be a better leader and not just give me a degree without teaching me anything. So ultimately, this is where I ended up. When I entered the program, I expected the online experience to be basic. I expected it to be very basic. What I got was a complete 180 from that.

Every grade that you get here, you're going to earn, but you'll have fun doing it. It won't always be easy, there'll be some late nights, there'll be some early mornings, but the most valuable things in the world are hard to get. This program differs because it's focused on making you better than you were before. And there's a lot more to that than just learning about accounting, or learning about economics. You'll do that, but you'll also learn about you.

I used to probably look for the easiest way to solve a problem, which never really solves a problem, but this program's done a great job of highlighting that and teaching me as a leader, how to find the root cause of a problem and actually identify problems that I previously didn't see.

We're working in a world that needs someone that can solve problems, not someone that can supervise people or supervise a process, but you need to be able to deal with real issues, social, economical, global, and deal with them effectively, and that's what this program teaches. As odd as it sounds, finishing the program feels less like a finish and more of a beginning. I hardly recognize the person I was, professionally, when I started. If you're looking for a program that is going to not only make you a better leader, but make you a better person, then this is a place for you.

Want to learn more about problem-solving in the 21st century? Hear from class of 2017 graduate Harris Ligon here.