Taking the leap

Janani Shivaguru

Janani Shivaguru sitting at table Studying abroad for one semester can be an intimidating venture for many students. Janani Shivaguru took the prospect of studying internationally a bit further by deciding to go to graduate school in the United States. Janani, who is from India, is pursuing her MBA in finance at Western Michigan University’s Haworth College of Business, in partnership with Christ University. She took the courageous leap to immerse herself in an international learning environment across the globe. WMU takes pride in creating a welcoming environment that rewards those who take that chance.

“Coming from a different culture and country, everything about the Haworth College of Business has been amazing,” Janani says. “Everyone here is welcoming and supportive, which gives me so much confidence. I also get to meet new people from different backgrounds, learn about their culture and get to know different perspectives. I think I have learned a lot by just interacting with different people.”

Janani has been leveraging that confidence by taking part in many of the co-curricular learning opportunities WMU offers. “I have had a lot of experiences at WMU, even though it has only been a few months since I started my master’s program,” she says. “The Mercantile Bank of Michigan Breakfast Speaker Series, Personal Financial Planning Speaker Series, 3M Thesis Competition and the Student Managed Investment Fund have all been so interesting and helpful in giving me a better understanding of what I want to do and who I want to be.”

Janani has not only participated in these activities, but she has excelled in them. She took first place in the 3M Thesis Competition hosted by the University in November.

“I have been researching the dynamic topic of how India gained access to free internet. I think my keen interest in the topic was one of the key factors that drove me to carry out better research and to present hard facts in front of the panel of judges. My success would be incomplete without the moral and academic support I received from Beth Ernst, a faculty specialist in the communication center.”

Janani shares her mantra, which ends with a quote from the Harry Potter character Dumbledore, that helps guide her as she pursues her dreams. “No matter what you do, follow your heart and do what you love. Because that’s the only thing that matters. ‘It is our choices, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.’”