Tamara Di Carlantonio
Chief of Staff in the Product Development department of a major pharmaceutical company
Distance Learning MBA (2021-23)

Tell us a bit about yourself
I’m a Business Manager and Chief of Staff in the Product Development department of one of the largest pharmaceutical companies in the world. This year, I’m also doing a super exciting rotation with the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations. I’m originally from Argentina and did my first degree there, then I lived in Germany for a while and I have been living in France and working in Switzerland for the past 8 years. I’m a lifelong learner who never shies away from a new challenge.

What first attracted you to Warwick Business School? 
I was looking for a part-time, Distance Learning programme since it was important for me to continue working. Looking at the international rankings and potential return on investment, WBS rapidly became my preferred option and I was thrilled to be accepted.

Why did you ultimately choose Warwick Business School for your MBA? 
Beyond the factors I already mentioned, the programme provided many opportunities to connect with the team and ask questions, and they emphasised flexibility, which was crucial for me. Additionally, the application process was very smooth, and the staff was super helpful.

What elements of the programme do you value the most and why? 

  • The module approach and the flexibility it entails
  • The content strikes the right balance between theory (models and frameworks) and real-world application. I’ve only done two modules so far but I have been able to integrate a lot of the things I’ve learnt back into my work
  • Warwick Weeks are definitely a highlight, it’s great to finally get to meet the cohort and build relationships with them, as well as the staff and faculty
  • The focus on personal development and growth beyond my current position is something I appreciate very much.

What is it like studying for an MBA?
It is exciting and challenging at the same time. It’s not easy to balance studies with a full-time job and a busy personal life. What personally motivates me is learning new things, the fact that you can almost immediately apply everything you learn to real-life situations, and the community that I’ve built and hope to continue building.

Tell us about the community at Warwick Business School. 
My cohort is fantastic! Such a diverse group of interesting, knowledgeable and inspiring people from many different countries and industry sectors. It is a very important part of the experience and I’m grateful I’ve got to know so many of them during Warwick Week.

How did you find the work/life balance?
I’m still working on it, I’ve only started three months ago. It takes a lot of discipline and commitment. Class workload is manageable but there is a lot of independent study and group work, which needs to be balanced with work and personal life. There is also a lot of flexibility to accommodate the speed to your life situation. I haven’t made use of it yet but I may in the future.

Do you have any advice for anyone currently thinking about studying for an MBA?
Do your research and find a programme that really fits your aspirations and needs. Talk to people in different programmes (not just the official contacts from the universities) to get a realistic view of what to expect (acknowledging that everyone’s experience is different). Be aware that it is an important commitment and it takes time and motivation. It won’t always be easy.