University of Tennessee

Why Krista Palmer chose UT’s Master’s in Business Analytics Program

April 9, 2014

Your Name: Krista Palmer

Undergrad University: University of Cincinnati

Undergrad Degree: BA Mathematics

Year graduated undergrad: 2013

Graduate Degree: Business Analytics

Graduating: 2014

Internship Company: Smuckers

Internship Position: Category Development Intern

During my senior year at the University of Cincinnati, I applied to graduate schools and many full-time positions. I pursued multiple opportunities because I was not sure if I wanted to continue my education or if I wanted to enter the workforce. However, I was sure that I wanted to have a career in analytics. I decided to pursue multiple opportunities, but I realized the best step for me was to attend graduate school.

When I began my search of programs, I knew I wanted a program that had a business focus, had the opportunity for an internship, and offered training in a variety of different software packages. The University of Tennessee stood out to me because not only did it fulfill all of my needs, but also it was close to home, located in a great city, and well-connected and respected as a business school. Additionally, the faculty and staff I interacted with were genuinely helpful and caring in my application process.

The most distinguishing feature of our program is the required internship, and it was the biggest selling point for me. I will graduate with real work experience in my field. There is no better way to prepare me for my future career than through an internship.

On my first visit to Tennessee, I was able to sit in on the Business Analytics Forum. The topics discussed in the forum increased my excitement about the analytics field and the program. During the forum I was able to speak with faculty and students, who could not say enough nice things about the program. The students I spoke with were engaging and intelligent. They were also incredibly supportive of each other. I was also impressed with my discussion with faculty. The faculty were engaging, and the passion that they had for analytics was inspiring to me.

I was truly impressed by how much the program at the University of Tennessee emphasized professional development. Every day, we are developing key business skills that we will use in our internships and future careers. The projects we complete are challenging, but also relevant and applicable to a number of business situations. Our writing and presentation skills are just as important as our statistical and analytical skills, which is crucial in the business world. This program has really prepared me for a successful career in analytics.

I received competitive offers from a number of programs, but my decision was easy. I feel like I am creating a valuable business networkthrough my classmates and the faculty. I truly feel like I am part of a team, and my classmates and I are very invested in each other’s successes. I am gaining the confidence necessary to go out into the business world to achieve my goals.

As part of my assistantship at UT, I did research on a number of comparable analytics programs and presented my findings to our department. The MSBA program at the University of Tennessee teaches all of the quantitative and qualitative skills necessary to succeed in a career in analytics. For example, our program teaches both SAS and R, but other programs only teach one. We have a business communication class that other programs do not offer.

I highly encourage anyone who wants to start a career in business analytics to make the University of Tennessee their top choice!