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Making Dreams a Reality: Cara Putman

Cara Putman does it all. From spending time with her family, maintaining a busy career in law, writing novels, and teaching graduate classes in business law at Purdue, it seems like there would be no time for taking MBA classes. But that hasn’t stopped Cara from excelling in Krannert’s Weekend MBA program.


Cara PutmanCara has taken an unusual path to where she is now. She was homeschooled, and entered college at the young age of 16. She graduated with a degree in political science and history when she was 20, then started her career. She got married and decided to enter law school while she was working full-time. Cara was accepted into the Department of Justice Honors Program, and was all set to begin her new career. However, Cara’s husband had other plans.

Her husband accepted a job at Purdue University. Cara would say that it has worked out quite well. “I work in a small town law firm where I do business planning, state planning and adoptions. I teach graduate students business law, and I teach Master’s of Accounting students as well. And I’m the author of 19 books.”

Cara was approached by her current employer about the opportunity to enroll in the Weekend MBA program. Her initial thought was that “It’s not going to happen.” She already had a lot on her plate. However, things started falling into place and Cara found herself enrolling in the program. Everything moved very quickly for Cara. She was approached in the middle of June and started classes on August 8th.

For Cara, the Weekend MBA program has been an enjoyable but a challenging experience so far. “The time is a challenge when you’ve got all of these group projects. I’ve been very blessed because I’ve had great teams, which makes a lot of difference,” said Cara. Putting the theoretical concepts into real-world framework has also been a challenge for her, but once she finds that framework the rest of the work becomes much easier.

The Putman family has had to make sacrifices since Cara has enrolled in the program. “It means my daughters not doing as many gymnastics competitions because I can’t be there every weekend. I don’t watch hardly any TV. There are a lot of those kinds of things that have gone away for a season.” Although there have been other sacrifices, Cara still finds time to write novels.

An avid reader at a young age, Cara took an interest in writing books. She sent out letters to authors when she was 14 as part of an English project. Cara never had time to write until 2005, when all of the doors opened for her. Just two years later, in 2007, her first book was published. Cara writes historical and romantic suspense novels, with most recent historical novel taking place in Lafayette, Indiana. 

At the end of the day, Cara says that all of the hard work and sacrifices will pay off. “The way that the Weekend MBA program is now structured, being every other Friday and Saturday, is a huge improvement because now you really can work it around a busy family schedule. It’s a great way to come back and learn things that are applicable to the business world, but to do it in a way that works when you have a family or an active career.”