Efesa Origbo ’11

Efesa Origbo

BS Architecture
Obafemi Awolowo University (Nigeria)
October 2000

MS Management Information Systems
Texas A&M University
August 2011

Northwestern University
Kellogg School of Management
June 2015

MS-MIS Internship:
National Instruments Corporation
Austin, TX
Summer 2010

MBA Internship:
Microsoft Corporation
Seattle, WA
Summer 2014

National Instruments Corporation; Austin, TX
Software Developer, IT Programmer Analyst
June 2011 – August 2013

Microsoft Corporation; Seattle, WA
Product Manager – Microsoft Dynamics 365
September 2015 – March 2016

Microsoft Corporation; Seattle, WA
Program Manager – AI Platform
April 2016 – June 2019

Microsoft Corporation; Seattle, WA
Senior Program Manager – Microsoft Teams
July 2019 – May 2021

Google; Seattle, WA
Product Manager – Google Maps
June 2021 – Present

Why did you pursue a master’s degree? Before my master’s degree, I was a guy with a bachelor’s degree in Architecture and 3 years’ work experience in advertising who was passionate about technology, and constantly dreamed about working in the global technology industry. I decided to pursue a master’s degree in order to make my dream come true.

What would you tell someone who is considering returning to school to earn a master’s degree? I would tell that person to think really critically about his or her motivations for returning to school. I would also ask them to clarify their expectations. While career potential usually improves after graduation, students are more likely to reap the benefits of a master’s degree if they pick graduate programs that fulfill three main criteria. First, the program has to be one that you are genuinely interested in. Second, you have to be able to really develop the skills that are expected from graduates of that program. Finally, unless you plan to start your business immediately after graduation, employers have to be willing and able to adequately compensate you for the new skills you will develop through your master’s degree.

What was the biggest challenge you faced when pursuing your master’s degree?  The biggest challenge was learning a lot of functional and technical material in a relatively short period of time. This was quite challenging especially since I had no prior background in technology. However, I worked with my professors and with classmates who had prior technology industry experience, and I was able to quickly fill in the gaps in my knowledge base.

What was the biggest reward for earning the master’s degree?  The biggest reward was a job offer from National Instruments Corporation in Austin, TX. I was also able to build relationships with classmates from different parts of the world, and to develop a global mindset.

Why did you choose Texas A&M for your graduate work?  Although I was fortunate enough to get admission offers from 4 out of the 5 schools I applied to, I ended up choosing to study Management Information Systems at Texas A&M for three main reasons. First, I was attracted to the program’s curriculum as the courses convinced me that I would develop the business and technology skills that I needed for my future career. Second, I was excited by the variety of career opportunities that I could access within and beyond the booming economy of the state of Texas. Finally, the Management Information Systems graduate program at Texas A&M is surprisingly affordable, especially when compared with other similarly reputed programs within the United States.