Native Canadians Jocelyne and Corey first met and fell in love when they were studying Mechanical Engineering at McMaster University in Ontario. While Jocelyne went on to work for PepsiCo in operations and supply chain roles after college, Cory worked in mechanical design and project management in the aerospace industry.
Jocelyne knew for a number of years that she wanted to go to business school – and HBS was the dream. Cory was planning to do his MBA as well, but had no concrete plans until Jocelyne decided to start applying in 2013. The couple figured if they were both going to do their MBAs eventually, they might as well try to do them together.
In honor of Valentine’s Day we checked in with Cory and Jocelyne to find out more about their MBA experience.
What’s your favorite thing about being at HBS as a couple?
These past two years have been incredible. We are so lucky to be here together. Our lives after HBS are going to be so busy, so this time really feels precious. HBS is a time to learn about yourself and explore your interests and passions, and being able to be on this journey together is something we are both so grateful for.
It has also been wonderful to have all of the same days off and holidays! We have had the chance to go to some incredible places with the friends we have met here at HBS. We know how lucky we are to have the chance to travel together. We chose to go to different locations for FIELD – Jocelyne went to India and Cory went to Peru – but during January of EC year we had five weeks to explore Australia and New Zealand!
Did you have a back-up plan if only one of you got in?
In the first round, we only applied to Boston area schools, hoping that we would at least both be in the same city. While we knew it was a risk that only one of us would get in to HBS, we decided to just deal with that if it happened. We didn’t really have a back-up plan. We knew no matter what happened we’d be able to figure it out.
Have you made friends individually, or as a couple?
We requested to be placed in separate sections, which meant that when we started our RC year we both had our own group of 90 new best friends! We also went to a lot of events together throughout the year. We’ve been able to make some friends as a couple, as well as some on our own. As the year progressed and we got closer to certain people, we found ourselves hanging out as a couple more often.
Are there many married couples at HBS?
There are! We are surprised to keep meeting more. Many applied together just like we did.
What’s the biggest challenge?
Making sure to get out and do things. We’re so lucky to have each other to hang out with every day, but we also have to take advantage of all opportunities we have here. It can be tempting to just stay in with cups of tea and read cases on a cold night!
What advice do you have for married couples applying to business school together?
We would say just go for it. The experience that we have had being at HBS together has been so incredible, that it’s worth the risk of only one person getting in. And no matter what happens, you’ll be able to figure it out.
How has your time at HBS changed your relationship?
We’ve really gotten to know each other even better over the past year and a half. We both are starting to get a better idea of where we want to go with our lives and careers, and being able to come to these realizations together has been a wonderful experience.
Do you have a favorite HBS memory?
The night before our first classes in RC year, we spent hours preparing our first cases at HBS. We are now much more efficient! But that was the first moment it felt real for both of us. We were really here at HBS, ready to start!