Phil Gasparovic (MSBA’23) on Taking the Leap to Pursue Graduate Education as a Military Student
Our veterans represent a significant part of the Georgetown McDonough community and hail from every branch and role within the United States military. They have honed valuable skills in leadership and conflict resolution through their unique experiences that create a great path forward to a successful career in business.
Phil Gasparovic (MSBA’23) came to Georgetown McDonough with hopes to further his education for his post-military career endeavors, but he found so much more: an entire community of dedicated faculty members, classmates, and peers who challenge him on a personal and professional level on a daily basis. Gasparovic is grateful for what he learned in the military and what he’s gained today as a student in uniform.
Learn more about Gasparovic’s experience on the Hilltop and how his time of service continues to shape who he is today both in and out of the classroom.
Why did you choose to pursue your MSBA degree at Georgetown McDonough?
I chose the M.S. in Business Analytics (MSBA) program at Georgetown McDonough because I wanted to learn valuable technical skills such as programming, machine learning, and data analytics in the business field. There are many business analytics programs out there, but I specifically chose McDonough because of the well-curated course list, the cohort model, the online program offering, and the name recognition and network that comes with attending a top-tier school.
How did your experience as a veteran prepare you for your time at Georgetown and your postgraduate career?
My military experience prepared me for just about any situation. I’ve deployed, worked long hours, and led a diverse group of service members to accomplish the mission in a wide range of situations. Those life experiences and the training that I received naturally fit into graduate school and enabled me to work well as a team, manage my time, accomplish projects and assignments, and communicate effectively.
What would you like people to know about the life of a student veteran?
We are just regular students like everyone else, but each of us brings a unique perspective to the university. This can be through the experiences we have had overseas, through our training in the wide range of specialties we served in, through our friends and fellow veterans from all over the United States that we had the privilege to serve with, or through our selflessness when we raised our right hand and swore an oath to something greater than ourselves.
What is one of the most important lessons you have learned while at Georgetown?
Networking is very important and a great way to separate yourself from your peers. Also, Georgetown professors and the entire Georgetown community are there to help you succeed. You aren’t just another number in a sea of thousands of other graduate students. The entire staff truly cares about the success of each student and will make themselves available to help you with classwork, career services, and everything else.
What advice would you give to veterans who are thinking about pursuing a college/graduate-level education?
Take the leap and apply to schools that you think might be “out of your league”. I think you will be surprised at how well veterans are received at top-tier schools. Veterans bring a lot to the table including leadership, discipline, and a wide range of experiences all around the world. Don’t sell yourself short or think you aren’t competitive in the application process.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with the Georgetown community?
I’d like to thank Georgetown for giving me an amazing opportunity to better myself and learn valuable skills for my post-military career.