Ana Maria Masoud, Service Line Sales Service Specialist Cognizant, is a graduate of an INDE EMBA.
I am a graduate of the Faculty of Law, University of Bucharest, class of 2001. In my second year I decided to pursue my passion for mathematics and I enrolled in the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Bucharest, which I graduated in 2004. Both faculties shaped me and even now I don’t know what defines me more: the love for mathematics or the desire for justice. I am also a graduate of the master’s degree “Databases and Web Programming”, also in the Faculty of Mathematics and Computer Science. During my first two years of law school, I also enrolled in the “Collège Juridique franco-roumain d’études européennes”, a programme run in collaboration with Pantheon Sorbonne University.
Connecting the dots… French helped me get my first job in 2002 as a programmer at a French-Romanian company: KeplerRominfo. Back then, IT was seen as a curiosity, and many colleagues/friends didn’t understand why I gave up my job as a lawyer for that of a programmer. Looking back, I think I made the best choice: it’s very important to do what you love and what suits you, not what’s trendy. Since then it’s been about 20 years, during which time I’ve ticked off almost every role in the industry: programmer, project manager, program manager, team leader, people manager, delivery manager, delivery director and business development director.
I decided quite late in life to pursue an MBA, in 2019, when I was 40. My husband told me that if I wanted more from my career, I should pursue a program that would structure the knowledge I gained “on the ground”. He was absolutely right. If before the MBA I was making decisions based on experience and instinct, now I am adding theoretical knowledge and taking a more structured approach.
In 2019, I was working for a French-owned company, so I wanted to pursue an MBA under French patronage. INDE was the only program of its kind in Romania. Ironically, a month after I started the course, I left for another company, and now I work for the UK market.
The programme opened my perspective a lot, as I looked at marketing, accounting, HR and the other areas I studied from a much wider perspective. Apart from the theory, the biggest gain of this programme is the opportunity to exchange ideas with professionals from other fields, to see the world through the eyes of those working in other industries. And, yes, the friendships made during the two years of study will last a lifetime!
I have always been very active, but the two years of MBA were quite exhausting, as almost every weekend was taken up with classes, and during the week, besides work and family, I had to allocate time to projects.
Another challenge was entering the pandemic. I started the courses in the traditional format, but soon after I switched to online, and the second year was I was reaching saturation, ZOOM fatigue.
With all these challenges, which I successfully met, the MBA experience is unparalleled.