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Making a Positive Impact | Sura Almansour’s Online BBA Valedictorian Q&A 

Ask 2023 Bachelor of Business Administration valedictorian Sura Almansour what the key to her success at Yorkville University has been, and she’ll tell you it’s been all about being “organized, proactive, and engaged.” 

“If I were to offer one piece of advice to an incoming student, it would be this: with hard work and effective organization, you can achieve anything,” said Almansour, who will speak on behalf of her graduating class at Yorkville’s upcoming convocation ceremony in Fredericton, New Brunswick on June 8.

“Remember that it is possible to successfully balance working full-time and studying full-time.” 

During her time at Yorkville University, Almansour said she not only gained a comprehensive understanding of business fundamentals, but was also happy to have had the opportunity to contribute to the broader school community – and all while balancing her demanding legal career with her online studies. 

Throughout her studies in YU’s BBA program, Almansour served as a student representative on YU’s Diversity and Academic councils, in addition to her role as a member of the Selection Committee for the university’s Community Builders Bursary. 

Even today, she continues to contribute to the Yorkville University community as an Alumni Advisor and member of the Program Advisory Committee. Her dedication, passion for diversity, and community engagement exemplify her exceptional skills and determination to make a positive impact in the world of business and beyond.

Almansour recently sat down to reflect on her time at Yorkville University and her plans for the future. Here’s what she had to say:

What brought you to Yorkville University? Where were you in your life/career when you decided to continue your studies with us? 

While working full-time as a law clerk, I realized the importance of continuous learning and professional development. I wanted to enhance my knowledge and skills in the business domain to broaden my career prospects. Yorkville University’s online program stood out to me because of its flexibility and independence. Being able to study independently without the need to attend live or pre-recorded classes was incredibly appealing, as it allowed me to balance my work commitments with my educational goals. 

Moreover, the opportunity to collaborate with students from different parts of the country and engage in group projects and discussion board interactions virtually was another aspect that drew me to Yorkville University. I valued the idea of making virtual friends and building connections with like-minded individuals, even though we might be physically distanced. 

Overall, Yorkville University’s Bachelor of Business Administration Program provided me with the perfect platform to pursue my academic ambitions while working full-time. The combination of flexible online learning, the chance to collaborate with students nationwide, and the comprehensive business curriculum made it the ideal choice for me to take the next step in my career journey. 

What made you decide to pursue your Bachelor of Business Administration? 

When I decided to pursue further studies after graduating from Algonquin College School of Business with a diploma in Law Clerk studies, I was at a point in my life where I wanted to expand my career opportunities and delve into the field of business administration. It was during this time that I discovered Yorkville University and its Bachelor of Business Administration Program, which instantly caught my interest.

I chose to pursue my BBA because I believe it serves as a crucial steppingstone for my future educational endeavors. This degree not only provides a strong foundation in business principles, but also equips me with essential skills that are applicable across various industries. 

One of the key factors that influenced my decision was the recognition that a Bachelor of Business Administration lays the groundwork for further education. With this degree, I will have a solid educational background to pursue advanced degrees such as an MBA or specialized master’s programs. By viewing the BBA as a steppingstone, I can continuously build upon my knowledge and expertise in the business field. 

The BBA program at Yorkville University emphasizes the development of a diverse range of skills that are highly valued in the modern business landscape. These include mathematical and technical skills, which are fundamental to understanding and analyzing the financial aspects of organizations. Moreover, the program fosters analytical thinking, encouraging students to approach challenges with a critical mindset and develop innovative solutions. The emphasis on creativity and decision-making skills equips graduates to navigate complex business environments and make informed choices. 

Entrepreneurial skills are also emphasized in the program, cultivating an entrepreneurial mindset that is essential for identifying opportunities, taking calculated risks, and driving innovation. Leadership skills are honed through coursework and collaborative projects, preparing students to effectively lead teams and guide organizations toward success. Additionally, the program emphasizes organizational skills, enabling students to manage resources, implement strategies, and streamline operations. 

By pursuing a Bachelor of Business Administration, I am not only gaining valuable knowledge and skills, but also setting myself up for future educational pursuits. The program’s focus on mathematical and technical proficiency, analytical thinking, decision-making, entrepreneurial skills, innovation, leadership, and organization aligns perfectly with my career aspirations and ensures that I am well-prepared for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

What is the most important thing you’re taking away from your time at Yorkville University?

The most important takeaway from my studies at Yorkville University is a combination of valuable skills and meaningful relationships. Through the program, I developed technical and mathematical expertise, workplace skills, and conceptual understanding of business interdependence and strategic decision-making. These skills have equipped me to analyze complex scenarios and develop effective strategies. Additionally, I have built wonderful connections with professors, faculty, peers, and the alumni network, fostering a supportive and collaborative environment. Furthermore, navigating my studies during a global pandemic has taught me the importance of adaptability and resilience in overcoming challenges. 

What are your plans after graduation, both immediate and long term? 

After graduation, I have both immediate and long-term plans. In the immediate term, I aim to leverage the knowledge and skills acquired during my Bachelor of Business Administration degree to excel in my current professional role. Being already immersed in the professional industry, I am excited to apply my expertise and make a tangible impact. 

Looking ahead, I have a strong desire to pursue further education to enhance my understanding and proficiency in the business field. This degree has opened doors of opportunity for me, and I believe that continuing my studies will unlock even greater potential. One of my long-term goals is to become a professor in the business program at a university, where I can share my practical experiences and inspire future generations of business professionals. By pursuing a teaching career, I hope to contribute effectively to the business world by nurturing and guiding aspiring students. My aim is to create an environment where students can develop their skills, think critically, and contribute to the ever-evolving business landscape. 

In summary, my plans after graduation involve immediate application of my knowledge and skills in my current professional role, furthering my education to expand my expertise, and eventually pursuing a teaching career as a professor in the business program. By combining my practical industry experience with academic insights, I aspire to make a positive and lasting impact on both the professional industry and the lives of future business professionals.

If you offered one piece of advice to an incoming student, what would that be?

If I were to offer one piece of advice to an incoming student, it would be this: with hard work and effective organization, you can achieve anything. Make sure to have a planner handy, whether it’s a traditional paper agenda or a virtual calendar, to stay on top of deadlines and expectations. Remember that it is possible to successfully balance working full-time and studying full-time. 

In an online learning environment, it’s easy to get stuck behind the screen and remain passive. However, you have the power to change that. Actively participate in your classes, ask questions, and engage with your peers and professors. Make yourself visible and showcase your unique qualities and perspectives during group discussions and project collaborations. 

By being organized, proactive, and engaged, you can make the most out of your academic journey and create a fulfilling and successful learning experience. Remember, you have the ability to achieve great things and leave a lasting impact. 

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