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Hello TMP

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

By Martin Todorov, MTM Student, Class of 2017

The first time I learned about the Master of Technology Management program, I had about ten tabs opened on my browser with different MBA programs and the MTM program was one of them. It was snowing in my hometown Sofia, Bulgaria as I was having tea and surfing the web for programs that had a specific focus in the technology industry. I already had some experience as a technology manager and knew that an MBA was not the right fit for me.

What I was looking for was a program that taught you how to develop a product from an idea and the standard MBA program just didn’t give you this knowledge. When I read the description for the MTM program I knew I found what I was looking for. That was January 2015 and now fast forward to Fall 2016 when I officially started the MTM program.

Although I've been to the United States before, when I landed in September, I needed two weeks to settle in my new surroundings. The long distance to the grocery store, the wide roads, the food...there were many differences compared to Europe. But the weather here really helps you with the transition. It's sunny every day and I don't even remember when it was not sunny.

During the first week of the program, we had many welcoming events where I met everyone in the incoming cohort. We played games, went on wine and beer tours, and had our cohort first party. Not only is the group unique with different technology background and industry experiences, we are a very diverse group of international students. The cultural differences we have sometimes lead to funny situations. This part of the program really helped me get to know my classmates better. This would eventually provide a smooth transition from meeting new people to when we started working with them on group projects.

Now at the end of November, I have gotten to know my group very well. They are all highly motivated and it’s difficult for me to keep up with them. When I was an undergrad, I was used to always being one of the top students. In this program, the expectations are high and in a way, I love that because that pushes you beyond your limits.

Over the last two months, I’ve learned so much and feel confident about the different aspects of the technology business. We’ve learned everything from validating product hypotheses to interviewing people to even trying to sell products. When you do all this and you analyze the process, you realize why so many innovations fail and so little succeed.

In Prof. John Bower’s class, we would always have CEO speakers come talk to us at the end of the week. I will not forget his first class and the way he explained the success of his students. He talked about millions and billions of dollars made from his companies as if we were having a conversation about, “What is your favorite pasta?”. When you meet people like Prof. Bowers and invited guest speakers and hear their stories, you feel like they are normal people just like you and me, but they made wise choices and managed to cope with multiple rises and falls. The end of each week is always so inspiring that it makes me think about it through the weekend.

About Martin Todorov

Martin is a software developer from Bulgaria. He graduated from New Bulgarian University at the Computer and Media Technologies program. He's been working in the software and media industries for the last 8 years, the last 3 of which as an entrepreneur with his own company.