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Darla Moore School of Business

Differentiating Your Degree to Make Your Career Path Unique

Feb. 11, 2019

Did you know that you can earn your Juris Doctor from USC’s School of Law, the only nonprofit law school in the state, as a dual degree with the one-year or International MBA from the Darla Moore School of Business?

As one of the top-ranked MBA programs in the country, the USC MBA is competitive by any standard. Putting that degree on your resume is sure to make you stand out in your career, and adding a USC law degree on top of that will differentiate you even further.

Courtney Bowie (J.D./IMBA ’18) knew in high school that she wanted to pursue law and international business.

“I've always had an interest in foreign language and the opportunity to live and study abroad,” she said. “With the top-ranking international business program in the country, it just made sense to attend the University of South Carolina for law school with the intent to join the joint J.D./IMBA program.”

Now, as a lawyer in contract management at Accenture, the most valuable thing she gained through the joint program was general business acumen.

“Being immersed in an environment of business-minded classmates and faculty exposed me to a different way of thinking and speaking that helps me in my current role, which is a true blend of legal and business,” she said. “I work with the business leads on my account every day, so understanding both the legal and business impacts of the work I’m doing allows me to bring more value to my internal clients.”

Wesley Cooler (B.S. ‘14, J.D./MBA ’18) wasn’t set on one particular career path after graduating, so he chose the joint program as a means of experiencing two different fields while building his professional resume and skillset.

“The Moore School is the foundation for all that I hope to achieve in my career,” he said. “I plan to build my career from positions of influence where I can drive decisions, impact business results, and use both my business and legal education in a beneficial manner.”

Wesley echoed Courtney in what he found most valuable through the joint program: those softer skills that are often overlooked.

“Between law school, where cold calling is the common practice, and the vast number of presentations in my MBA classes, I was able to develop a great deal of experience in talking in front of others in a professional setting,” he said. “On top of that, we spent considerable time working on interviewing skills and developing our personal brand. These are skills and experiences that are incredibly important to any job or field I’ll work in throughout my career, and I am thankful that this program afforded me multiple opportunities to work on these skills.”

As a finance leadership associate in one of Coca-Cola’s two-year rotational programs in Atlanta, Wesley uses many of those skills on a daily basis. Although he’s still deciding on his next steps, these and other skills, as well as the network he built through the joint program, are sure to serve him well wherever he goes next.

“I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect going into the J.D./MBA program,” he said. “It was challenging and required a great deal of hard work, but it was worth it. The joint program at USC produces many successful alumni in a multitude of careers, and I find great value in having those options and the accompanying professional network.”

By Madeleine Vath

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