Beyond the Blueprint: Jonathan Boudreaux’s MBA Journey

Written byFaith Derouen

There are not many things you get to do as big as this. Enjoy the experience, take it slow, and ask questions when they come up because UL Lafayette has a huge support system. That’s one of the reasons I decided to go back.”

Jonathan Boudreaux
Graduation Year
2024
Major
MBA
Hometown
Mandeville, La.

From the bayous of Mandeville, Louisiana, to the boardrooms of Black Hills Energy in Wyoming, Jonathan Boudreaux's journey serves as a testament to the transformative power of education. 

After struggling in his undergraduate studies, he took a step away from university life. But real-world experience soon taught him the value of a degree, motivating him to return to academia with renewed purpose. 

“Something my father always instilled in me was that there’s many things that can be taken away from you, but education is not one of them,” he says. “No one can ever take away what you’ve accomplished by earning a degree.” 

With those words driving him forward, Boudreaux earned his bachelor’s degree from UL Lafayette in 2010. 

But his pursuit of knowledge was far from over. 

Nearly a decade later, Boudreaux enrolled in UL Lafayette’s MBA program online, marking the beginning of a journey defined by resilience and dedication. 

Charting New Waters 

Boudreaux's journey at UL Lafayette as a young mechanical engineering student got off to a rocky start. 

“It just wasn't working for me. I ended up leaving the University just because I felt like maybe college wasn't the route for me,” he explains. “Then, I started working, and I realized how much I really needed a degree to do what I wanted to do in life.” 

Through real-world experience, Boudreaux came to understand the significance of education in unlocking opportunities and advancing in his career.

“I went back to UL Lafayette and met with the dean of engineering at the time, and he talked to me about the Industrial Technology program. And that kind of fit me a little bit better than what I originally wanted to do,” he says. 

This realization fueled his decision to return to school. 

In 2010, Boudreaux secured his bachelor’s degree in industrial technology and spent a decade in the workforce. 

But after a while, he found himself craving something more. 

Motivated by his family’s educational achievements and a desire for career advancement, Boudreaux made the decision to pursue his MBA online through UL Lafayette. 

“I was looking at different universities and I decided to go back to UL Lafayette because that’s where I got my bachelor’s degree, and it was a wonderful school,” he says. “It was a great size for me, and the Office of Career Services really helped me kickstart my career. The MBA program was all online, so the process was very simple.” 

But after deciding on UL Lafayette's MBA program online, Boudreaux found himself facing a new set of challenges in the application process. Feeling uncertain about the next steps, he reached out for guidance. 

“When I was applying to do this, I hadn’t taken the GMAT. So, I reached out to the MBA Director, and he walked me through the process of how to do that. He was super helpful,” he says. “I wasn’t expecting a one-on-one phone call with him but that’s what he did, so I was very appreciative of that.” 

Striking a Balance 

Serving as president of his local Rotary club, vice chair of his local Habitat for Humanity chapter, and juggling the responsibilities of a supervisor and family man, Boudreaux added "MBA student" into his already impressive roster of commitments. 

With this array of responsibilities, his second stint at UL Lafayette required a fresh approach. 

“I’d get home from work and spend some time with the family and the kids, and once they’d go to bed, that was when I’d log on,” he says. “I had a lot of late nights and there were several weekends where all I did was sit in the basement and knock out a whole bunch of assignments and schoolwork.” 

As Boudreaux navigated his busy schedule, he found a rhythm that allowed him to manage both his professional and personal commitments. 

“I took two classes a semester, and that was the perfect pace for me,” he recalls. 

With 8-week classes, the MBA program online allows students to take two courses per semester while only having to focus on one class at a time. 

Boudreaux was able to take the knowledge from his accelerated MBA courses and immediately apply it to real-world challenges in his work. 

“Right away, I was able to apply all of the financial accounting lessons that we learned: how corporate finance is structured, how different corporations make money, and how it impacts the shareholders,” he explains. “The courses really helped build a foundational layer. Just being able to apply what I learned has been super helpful.” 

But Boudreaux found that this program offered more than just complementary curriculum — it fostered a learning community that transcended geographical boundaries. 

“I really enjoyed working with my classmates on some of the projects we got to do,” he says. “Group assignments were really fun. There was one student from Florida and another from West Virginia, so it was pretty neat to bring people together from all different places to work on things.” 

Beyond the MBA 

With three new letters behind his name, Boudreaux is looking forward to the opportunities that await. 

“I want to progress in my career, I’m currently a Regional Operations Manager for a gas distribution company. I’d like to move up to a state leadership role and progress from there,” he says. “As far as education goes, I don’t feel like I’m done. There is something else I want to get, and I don’t know what that is yet, but I really enjoyed being back in school.” 

With a seasoned perspective, Boudreaux extends a word of advice to those currently navigating the MBA program online.

“The small accomplishments are huge. There are not many things you get to do as big as this,” he says. “Enjoy the experience, take it slow, and ask questions when they come up because UL Lafayette has a huge support system. That’s one of the reasons I decided to go back.” 


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