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Student Stories José Ortega

From Mexico City, Mexico to VP of Central Operations at Walmart China

Tell us about your educational background:

Originally from Mexico City, Mexico, I earned my MBA at UCLA's Anderson School of Management.

Marketing Grupo Bimbo

Mexico City, MX

MBA from UCLA Anderson School of Management

California, U.S.

VP Central Operations Walmart China


Tell us about your career path:

I started my career in marketing working for Bimbo Bakers in Mexico where I managed the launch of one of the company’s key products. I then got my MBA at UCLA where I focused primarily in Finance and Operations. During the program, I interned with Walmart Mexico in Corporate Finance. I loved the experience and received an offer to continue full time post-graduation. I knew that although I wanted to go back to Mexico in the short-term, I wanted to keep the door open to coming back to the US. My new role, which was focused on international business process, did just that - it allowed me to work directly with other markets across Walmart and would eventually create an opportunity for me to take on new roles with the company in both the US and in China. My global experience has served as a huge asset and has been central to my career growth.

What was the biggest challenge you faced?

The biggest challenge was getting a clear understanding of potential career trajectories and what opportunities were available to international students. I mainly focused on companies that directly recruited international MBA students, so my search and focus were limited.

What was your most valuable resource during this experience?

My peers at UCLA were my most valuable resources. We supported and helped one another early in the job search process and still to this day.

Any words of advice for other international students?

Find mentors from different stages of your life and career - people you admire and whose career paths you respect. These mentors will provide you insight and different perspectives as you have to make big decisions in your career. In many cases, your mentors will also link you to new opportunities you wouldn’t have otherwise been exposed to. Also - pay it forward! Be a mentor to others whether it be through your company, your alma mater or volunteer work.

#internationalstudents #Walmart #UCLAAnderson #interstride

December 16, 2020