A Plan, a Pandemic and a Pregnancy

By Vasudha Khandeparkar, EMBA London 2022

I started thinking about an MBA about 7 years ago. While I definitely didn’t have the experience or the confidence to be a part of a community such as the one at London Business School, it was definitely something that I wanted to pursue at some point during my career. The pandemic and the new structure of classes was definitely not something that was part of the plan, but after having put in the effort into planning, including the dreaded GMAT prep, I wanted to pursue the plan in spite of the changed circumstances.

The one thing that did not change was a planned pregnancy. This is my second pregnancy and when I had my first child, I realised that while I enjoyed the time I spent at home with my new baby, I missed the mental stimulation from the work place. I wanted to make sure that I had the opportunity to exercise my mental faculties while I was on maternity leave this time round. I have heard multiple different opinions, and I know that circumstances and situations change.

The one thing that I didn’t know was how my ground experience at LBS was going to be? Am I going to be able to contribute to my study group? Could I stand for and be a good rep? Can I manage work, studying, kids and all the other things on my plate of tasks to juggle? Would I have post-natal depression again which can derail many things?

I am only at the very beginning of my journey at LBS. I have had nothing but support so far from the school, my cohort and my study group. The one thing I didn’t know was the scale of support on offer. It would have potentially made me apply to be a part of the LBS community sooner! I did not have any information on LBS with regards to their maternity policies prior to my communication with the programme office. I know it would have helped me and made me much calmer about this decision if I had known about the facilities at the school.

I reached out to the school and offered to blog about my EMBA experiences, so this is very much the first of many over the next two years. I promise not to sugar coat the experience – morning sickness, sleeping through deadlines, socialising in a pandemic, diary conflicts and nursing schedules will all make an appearance. I hope to bring in the voices of other women who have been through a pregnancy and their EMBA and my peers on their honest reflection of how my circumstances impacted their journey.

I know that every woman is different. I do hope that my journey helps you quell some of the voices at the back of your mind and encourages you on this journey. I am also happy for you to reach out to me (through the school at this stage), so I can help answer any questions you may still have.

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