Juliana Priest ’08
Current employer: Tishman Speyer
Title: Associate in the Leadership Development Program
How did the JD-MBA program benefit you in your real estate career?
In real estate, having both legal and business training is important. Real estate is a highly legalized profession, so my comfort with legal documents combined with my knowledge of areas like finance and accounting makes me a better employee. Having both degrees also leads to better work experience since I am not limited to one of the fields. I have been involved in some projects that are oriented around business and some that are oriented around the law.
How were you able to get involved on both campuses?
I remained very active in organizations on the law school campus while I was attending business-school classes full time. Business-school students are inherently involved in many organizations, so it is easy to be involved while attending Kellogg. Staying involved in the law school during the second year of the program was very important and eventually led to my becoming president of one of the largest law school student organizations during my final year.
Sheila Kang ’08
Current employer: Kirkland & Ellis
Why did you choose this program over a traditional JD program?
Having been a business analyst for an investment bank for their legal and compliance group, I understood that the checks and balances of the legal world work hand in hand with the economics and strategy of the business world. I wanted a better understanding of both. I also wanted to make sure I had the building blocks for a future entrepreneurial venture in emerging markets, lacking either a stable legal architecture and/or a mature business platform. The JD-MBA Program was the only one in its class to provide both degrees in three years, representing the smallest opportunity cost.
How did the program challenge you?
The program really teaches you two worldviews: The law school hones the skill of nuanced, detail-oriented analysis and logic, whereas the business school provides a top-down approach of breadth before depth. The perspectives are not opposite, but they are disparate, and the program challenges you to take both your own. And of course, balancing the two programs, as an administrative matter, is no easy task. There are many aspects of this program that require patience, planning and dedication.
Ryan Paulowsky '07
Current employer: McKinsey & Company
How did the JD-MBA program benefit you in your consulting career?
The JD-MBA program benefited my consulting career (if two years is long enough to call it a career) in multiple ways. The program’s collaborative culture, particularly present when working on team assignments at Kellogg, prepared me to excel in diverse team settings. In addition, the law school helped me develop a practical problem-solving framework that proves effective when dealing with ever-changing client issues in consulting.
Why would someone who doesn’t want to be a lawyer choose this program?
The value of the Kellogg education, network and access to prospective employers is obvious, but the legal education provides two key additional benefits. First, the law school teaches students a very useful problem-solving framework that is applicable in business situations. Law school, in many ways, focuses on developing the skills to disaggregate a complex set of facts into specific issues, and then attack those issues in a structured manner to culminate in a clearly communicated solution. Possessing the ability to solve problems in this structured manner is critical in the business world. Second, understanding the law is, in some ways, similar to speaking a different language. The JD-MBA Program allows graduates to fully understand and add value in executive-level business conversations with legal ramifications. Graduates with out the dual degrees may find it difficult to "play both sides of the field."