When I decided the make the transition from Mental Health to business school, I knew many of the classes would be challenging. I had looked over the required classes for the IMBA and saw that some of them were subjects I had never learned in my entire life. But there was one subject that scared me above all other ones, and that was Finance. While it may seem like a simple subject for those with a finance background, I knew that my skills were extremely limited when it came to math.

Before the class started I had a flashback to when I had to take economic & statistics as a pre-requisite course before my previous masters. I ended up hiring my own tutor to help me study for my statistics final after failing multiple quizzes and not understanding what I was doing wrong. The tutor and I met in the library in Westchester, NY and he would attempt to help me understand the math. But the problem was that I really didn’t understand, and he would grow frustrated with me, to the point where one day I started bawling in the library and had to end our tutoring lesson early. When I say that math is another language to me, I truly mean it. I would have no easier time doing a math equation than I would reading Chinese letters. My brain just doesn’t work in that way.

Sitting in our most recent Finance course, the same feelings of frustration and fear came over me. What if I don’t understand this? Will I fail the course? What happens if you fail something at ISM? And in class on the second day I started to get the same overwhelming feeling. And again, I began to tear up, although this time I was able to find a more private location. But this experience at ISM and Finance class was so different than my previous one! I realized I had people I could talk to. There was Steph, a fellow student and Student Coordinator who assuaged my fears about what happens if you fail a class at ISM (you won’t get kicked out on the streets on Paris) and Professor Pollon who was a much kinder and better professor than previous Statistics tutor. And so, I began to relax slightly.

Does this experience make me feel like I am able to fully understand Finance and grew a fondness for it? Absolutely not. But I have learned how crucial finance and its place in business are and I have learned more than I ever thought I would be comprehend. And to me, this was a huge step in my education here at ISM, and probably the most important class I have personally taken so far. I also have learned to appreciate that there are many people in the world who are brilliant at finance, and I’m very happy to hire them as my accountant in the future.

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