Meet Goizueta’s Henry Fumbah, who is using his Evening MBA to pivot from a career in corporate finance to one in consulting.

When it came time for Henry Fumbah 24EvMBA to change the trajectory of his career, he knew an MBA would prepare him to be a leader in Corporate America.

The native Atlantan, born to Liberian parents, didn’t have to look too far to find the perfect school.

The name Goizueta, it holds rank, as does the network that comes with it. Choosing Emory just made sense.

Henry Fumbah 24EvMBA

Naturally, Fumbah (pronounced Foomba) did his due diligence. He spoke with admissions counselors and alumni. These included several colleagues at Boston Consulting Group (BCG), where he is a senior financial analyst.

“One of my BCG mentors, while he wasn’t a Goizueta alum, mentioned Emory as a top school that I should look into. Those types of conversations were very inspiring. They definitely played a large part in my decision to not only get my MBA, but to come to Goizueta,” he said.

Decision made, Fumbah continued to work in corporate finance at BCG while strategizing how best to optimize the graduate school experience. Ultimately, he chose a similar tactic to the one he used at Georgia Southern University for undergraduate studies.

The Path to an MBA

Growing up Fumbah had a love for numbers. Math was always his favorite subject and, in high school, he was a member of the National Honor Society. Still, when he entered undergrad, he didn’t declare a major and instead chose pre-business as a placeholder until he made a final decision.

It wasn’t until the prerequisite accounting class that all business students had to take that I decided this is where I was going. This is the path.

Henry Fumbah

“I learned those foundational accounting skills. I learned that I was very good at it, and I enjoyed accounting.”

With a degree in accounting and a minor in finance, he went on to get a master’s degree in management information systems from Kennesaw State University. Then, he took a job as a fund accounting associate at Trident Trust. A year later, wanting to tackle more future facing analyses, he joined BCG as a finance specialist in 2018. After rising in the ranks of BCG, he was ready to explore the next stage of his career.

The Balancing Act: Managing School and Career

Fumbah entered Goizueta Business School’s Evening MBA program with an open mind and a willingness to let the path forward reveal itself.

“I knew it was a three-year program and I wasn’t going to expedite it at all,” he says. “So, I said, let me just get in. I’ll get involved, meet people, have fun, and figure out what I am doing here.”

Among the adjustments was learning to manage work and school.

It was definitely a challenge, but a doable challenge.

Henry Fumbah

“And kudos to those students who have families,” says Fumbah. “As someone with no family or kids of my own yet, it was still a challenge for me.”

“Just trying to space things out and plan ahead, plus doing your due diligence was enough. You have to make sure that you are taking care of your schoolwork. However, you also have to take care of your personal and professional life.”

To manage, Fumbah used time blocking, scheduling time for coursework, a flex day, and Friday nights for fun with friends. Also, he shared his school schedule with everyone, including his line managers. “Class days change every semester. So, I would say, ‘Hey, these are days I need to leave 30 minutes to an hour earlier. If anything arises, I will make up the work in the morning or the next day.’”

Fumbah acknowledges that not everyone works for a company that offers such a supportive environment.

From Classroom to Consulting

Once in the groove of the program, Fumbah began to focus on the subject areas that resonated with him. What bubbled to the top was consulting.

A key component in this decision was the IMPACT experiential learning class. It’s a semester long consulting project where students work with real clients on real business problems.

“That class gave me the foundation and basic skillsets I needed in order to be a successful consultant,” he says.

I learned how to frame a problem, how to structure the problem-solving processes, and how to take an analysis and synthesize a good recommendation for our client.

Henry Fumbah

In addition to aiding him in learning the language of consulting, Fumbah says the course helped with his “case-study skills.” Ultimately, it prepared him to showcase this skillset during interviews with consulting firms.

Fumbah used these skills, along with help from Goizueta’s MBA Career Management Center, to secure a new role as an Associate with ScottMadden Management Consultants. His new job and career pivot begins on July 1, in the firm’s Atlanta office.

Enriching Experience

Goizueta's Henry Fumbah poses in front of the business school in commencement regalia

Reflecting on his experience at Goizueta, Fumbah can’t say enough about the life-long friendships he’s built with his classmates or the willingness of alumni to offer advice about consulting. Plus, there are other impactful courses that offer lessons he will use moving forward.

Fumbah’s always been interested in buying a business versus creating something from scratch. So, the course Entrepreneurial Private Equity: Perspectives from Practitioners, proved particularly insightful. The class is taught by David Panton, global private equity investor and adjunct professor at Goizueta, and Klaas Baks, professor in the practice of finance and executive director of the Center for Alternative Investments. Fumbah also participated in the Peachtree Minority Venture Fund. The $1 million student-run venture capital organization at Emory aims to address the funding gap for Black, LatinX, and Native American entrepreneurs.

We invest in minority businesses across the nation to help get them started and on their way. I am proud to say that the company I pitched in spring of 2023 received a $25K investment.

Henry Fumbah

“That was an amazing experience,” he says. “My team and I pitched the vision to the Investment Committee, led by JB Kurish, professor in the practice of finance and a Business & Society Institute faculty advisor. We really worked hard to secure the funds for that company.”

Taking Flight: Pursuing Passions Beyond the Classroom

Going forward, Fumbah is excited to recover some of his free time as his final classes draw to a close. He enjoys the variety of festivals Atlanta offers this time of year, and he’s joined an intermural basketball team to reconnect with playing sports. And yes, he’s even practicing his golf swing.

In addition to spending more time with family and friends, he is keeping in mind a childhood dream: to become a pilot.

“I’ve always loved airplanes since I was a young child. That passion has never gone away. In fact, on my resume, I state that I’m planning to get my private pilot’s license. So, now I have to go do it!”

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