Our March 2005 Student of the Month, Alexander Gaidukov, who studied GMAT and TOEFL at Pericles, scored 740 on the GMAT and has just been admitted to Duke University's MBA program. Congratulations Alexander!
Alexander graduated with honors from the Moscow Engineering and Physics institute in 1993 and immediately started working in IT. Fairly quickly though, his aptitude for management shone through and he started to be assigned IT management and consulting projects. Moving up the ladder through several different firms and positions, now he is in management systems consulting for S&T International, a 200-million dollar company and the leading systems integrator in Central & Eastern Europe. He manages major accounts such as those of the Central Bank of Russia , and MICEX.
As Alexander moved up in IT consulting, he saw the need to get a formal management education, and that's when he started looking at MBA programs. He chose Duke because of its strong general management orientation, and because of its reputation as a good place for family (Alexander has a wife and small child who will be joining him there). Located in North Carolina , Duke is known for good weather, good schools and a safe environment. (You can see Duke reviewed in the Spring 2005 issue of the Graduate Advisor newsletter.)
Alexander advises taking preparation courses for the GMAT because, via networking with Professors and fellow students both inside and outside of classes, he came to better understand B-school values and culture, and to define his career goals and craft the best development and application strategies. Plus, despite his already strong math background, Alexander says that logic and math classes in the GMAT prep course helped hone his reasoning skills for the exam.
He also found the TOEFL classes helpful and advises all aspiring MBA students to push themselves to progress in English and to listen to native speakers, "When I came to the Pericles for the first time, though I had decent reading skills, I barely could understand English speech and had immense difficulties in speaking out. I was really sweating in TOEFL classes of Dan Repko who challenged students to actively participate. Going beyond the comfort zone has been proved to be the best way to the progress."
Alexander tells us that "You can mention if you like that I am really thankful to Pericles people who helped me a lot." So, of course, we will mention it! Thanks Alexander, for the praise. Best of luck at Duke, and congratulations again on your achievements!