Tara Routie

MIB Student Spotlight: Tara Routie

Tara Routie is a current student in the Master of International Business (MIB) program. She shares why she chose to pursue the combined degree program, her favorite part of the MIB program and the famous Gators she’s met as a UF Gatorette. 

Tara Routie takes a selfie with two other students.

Q: Tell us about yourself.

Routie: “My name is Tara Routie, and I am a graduate student at UF in the Master of International Business Program. I am a double Gator and recently graduated with my Bachelor of Science in Business Administration – Management. I began the MIB program as a combined degree student, and I will be graduating in August.

I am the current Executive Director of the Hough Ambassadors, and I served as the Director of Campus Outreach this past spring. You might have seen me at some of our events! I’ve had a lot of fun collaborating with the E-Board and Program Office to put on events to serve our students.”

Q: Why did you join the MIB program?

Routie: “I learned about the combined degree program my freshman year, and I thought it was a great opportunity. Being an in-state student, I loved the aspect of being able to take graduate classes as an undergraduate and use some of my Bright Futures and Financial Aid to save on my master’s degree.

I also really enjoyed the timeline of the program. The idea of graduating with a master’s a few months after my bachelor’s was really enticing. The format is great as well. I loved the opportunity to take accelerated classes to cover more topics and get exposed to a wider range of topics. The freedom to choose so many electives and tailor my degree to my interests sealed the deal for me.”

Tara Routie performing at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium as a UF Gatorette.

Q: Tell us about your MIB experience. What was the best part?

Routie: “I started the MIB program as an undergraduate in the combined degree program. I remember first feeling intimidated because I was taking classes with grad students, but everyone was so welcoming and that helped me adjust to the program. Once I joined the ambassador program, I truly expanded my network and became much more comfortable with the program.

The best part of the MIB degree is the people you meet! After joining the Hough Ambassadors and taking classes with familiar faces, I have met so many wonderful people from this program, and I’m happy to call some of them my closest friends. The group projects truly help you practice your networking skills which will be so valuable in the future. I can already see how beneficial practicing my networking skills in the MIB program have been while searching for a job.”

Q: What do you wish you had known before you started the program?

Routie: “I wish I would’ve known truly how fast 8 weeks goes by. Since the MIB runs on a modular system, each class is only 8 weeks long. That sounds like a long time, but I blinked and the module would be over. In my first semester taking classes, I had a harder time adjusting to the pace. However, what really helped me was taking advantage of the first 2 days of classes to plan out the entire module and write down due dates in my calendar. For larger projects, I would set soft deadlines so I can make continual progress on them, and not wait until the last minute to complete those projects. For group assignments specifically, I obtained everyone’s contact information as soon as possible and set up an initial meeting so that we could come up with a plan on how to complete the assignment. This initial meeting was crucial, and it really helped my groups and I set ourselves up for success.”

Tara Routie stands in front of a wall with the words 'I love you so much' spray painted on top.

Q: Any advice for incoming MIB students?

Routie: “Take advantage of the resources Hough has to offer! The Graduate School has some unique resources that are not accessible to anyone else, such as the Capital Markets Labs.  Furthermore, the Business Career Services are a great resource to help you edit your resume, draft your cover letter, and come up with strategies on nailing interviews. Even though I went to UF and utilized the undergraduate Business Career Services (which were very helpful as well), I found myself heavily using Hough’s BCS when transitioning my resume from undergraduate to graduate.”

Q: Tell us three cool things about you.

Routie: “I’m a baton twirler! I’ve been twirling since I was 7, and I was a UF Gatorette for the past 4 years. I’ve had some cool experiences from twirling, such as welcoming Coach Napier at the Gainesville Airport, performing at Bowl Games, and even meeting Tim Tebow!

I LOVE the show NCIS. I’m not a big fan of watching TV, but once I got introduced to NCIS, I was hooked. My brother and I would stay up late together to binge watch it when we were home. I even named my car after my favorite character in the show, Ziva.

I have never owned a pet before. Not even a fish. People are always surprised when they find this out about me. It was just never something my family considered. However, I want to adopt a dog in the future because I’ve always loved dogs. I was always jealous of my friends growing up who had dogs, and any chance I got, I would go to their house to play with their pets. Considering I’ve never owned a pet before, I might have to start out really small and see if I can take care of a house plant first.”