Interview 6: Sam Szamocki

Sam Szamocki (CEng MEng, University of Warwick), INSEAD 

















Prior to starting his MBA at INSEAD, Sam worked as a project engineer for Atkins, primarily in the Wind and Nuclear Energy sector. He has experience in solving in-depth technical design problems as well as project management on large scale Nuclear sites – most recently at the international nuclear fusion reactor – ITER, in the south of France. He joined the digital challenger bank OakNorth for a 4-month internship prior to beginning his MBA.

What do you hope to achieve through your MBA experience?
I hope to achieve both short-term and long-term goals through my MBA at INSEAD. In the short-term, I will use it as a unique opportunity to learn about the world of business, management and leadership through immersing myself in the rich and diverse learning opportunities that an MBA offers. In the long-run, I hope to forge a career path using these new experiences which are both meaningful in terms of my personal goals, and impactful on the world and others around me.

How will you use your MBA to further your career?
This MBA will offer me a multitude of different avenues through which I aim to further my career. I will use the academic course to bolster my business knowledge to understand real-world business challenges whilst simultaneously identifying areas of interests and areas I would rather avoid. I will also be nurturing my entrepreneurial mindset at the various initiatives the course offers and hope to use the connections and networks throughout this journey to keep potential avenues of future opportunity open.

That’s the great thing about an MBA, you never know when you might attend that class, or strike up a conversation with that individual, that completely changes your perspectives on things and your future career direction.  In five years’ time, I see myself either leading an initiative in the renewable energy/sustainability movement or collaborating with a partner in running my own business.

What are your hopes/expectations of being part of the SMF network after business school?
Reviewing the current fellows within the SMF, it is clearly one of the deepest and broadest networks of highly skilled and competent professionals in the UK. Being able to draw on a talent pool of this calibre is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity which will pay dividends for years to come. I aim to use this network, through attending events, interacting with a career mentor and contributing my own ideas, to learn how best I can apply what I will learn during my MBA to have maximum impact in transforming UK engineering and business.

How do you hope to support SMF after you graduate from business school?
Mentorship is something I have always enjoyed both receiving and giving. I thoroughly enjoyed mentoring engineering graduate students at Bristol University and will likely continue this on behalf of the SMF following my MBA. I am also committed to the goal of ensuring more UK engineers develop business and leadership understanding and will endeavour to become involved in SMF and EIB initiatives which aim to develop this. Naturally, given the generosity of this grant, I will look to support the SMF financially later on in my career.

When did you start thinking about doing an MBA?
I started thinking about an MBA when I realised my technical career path in engineering was not leveraging additional skills I felt I had in management and leadership. It was also at the point where I had become chartered, and, as I saw it, could either continue down a technical path or aim to become a more well-rounded professional through attending business school.

What did you learn by going through the scholarship application process?
The SMF application process and the research I conducted prior to completing it, taught me that I was not alone in my desire to develop business and leadership skills as an engineer. Feeling that those who would be reading my application would understand my world-view and perhaps have shared similar experiences, made the whole process much more appealing.

What difference has the scholarship made to you?
This scholarship has given me the financial security and freedom to get the most out of business school whilst providing access to an unparalleled community of accomplished individuals at the SMF. It has made a huge difference to how I am approaching business school now, knowing that a large part of my debt is already paid off, I can pursue more risky ventures such as entrepreneurship.


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