Heidi Lelke

US Air Force, MBA '18
heidi Lelke

Why choose an MBA degree from UNH’s Paul College?

When New Hampshire Air National Guard pilot Heidi Lelke ’96 ’18G decided it was time to go back to school, she had many options to use her military education benefits. But for the Wildcat alumna, UNH was an easy option.

“One of the reasons I chose UNH’s Paul College was that it’s really close to my house. It’s only about a ten-mile commute, and I wanted to have classes in person, rather than online, so this seemed like the best option for me,” she said.

In addition, Lelke had heard great things about the program from coworkers and friends who had completed one of Paul College’s MBA programs.

“I had heard so great many things about the small cohort in the full-time program, and the level of professionalism from the teaching staff,” she said. “I could have gone to so many different places, and I’m really glad that I came here. It’s been such a great experience, my cohort has been fantastic and the teachers have been phenomenal.”

How can military veterans benefit from having an MBA degree?

Lelke feels the program is great for military veterans ready to make a new start in their careers. 

“The military can be very uniform depending on what field you go into. When you come here, there’s no set way to have an education. You learn it your own way based on your past experience,” she said.

Lelke cites the flexibility of the MBA degree and the career options it could bring to military veterans as a big selling point.

“I think this program is a great fit for military veterans because it gives them so many different options. In the military you’re basically trained to do one thing,” she said. “And here, you have a whole different variety of different classes. You can really focus in on the ones that you enjoy, anything that calls to you.”

What makes the UNH Paul College MBA program outstanding?

For Lelke, two parts of the full-time MBA program stand out: the China residency and the Corporate Consulting Project. Although Lelke had traveled overseas in the military quite a bit, the China residency offered her an opportunity to go places she wouldn’t have normally seen.

“It’s such a great opportunity to go travel overseas, especially for the people who haven’t been overseas,” she said. “We got to see so many things that I personally, probably would have never seen on my own if it wasn’t for this program. We were able to visit companies, ranging from small startups to huge multinational corporations, while we were there. It was really great to see how people do business in so many different ways, especially in a country as big as China.”

Lelke liked how the Corporate Consulting Project tied together a lot of the different concepts the cohort had learned throughout the year.

“We got to help a real company with a problem they were having and were able to apply some of the principles that we learned. It was a great opportunity to really test some of the things that we learned and help some people in the real world at the same time,” she said.