“If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.”
You can credit George S. Patton with that gem. A brilliant American general, Patton competed in the Olympics as a pentathlete and suffered from dyslexia. He even had to repeat a grade at West Point after failing his math exams.
Bet that would make a great admissions essay, huh?
Alas, Patton understood something fundamental: non-traditional backgrounds enrich any experience. That’s particularly true in business school. Dismiss outliers at your peril. They dig deep, ask hard questions, and don’t accept pat answers. Whether they toured with Wicked or nursed gunshot victims to health, they already know how to master a discipline. Sure, they have a big learning curve ahead. In essence, they enrolled in business school because they welcome change — and they have something to prove. With that mindset, their success rate is high.
A TRACK RECORD OF HELPING NON-TRADITIONAL STUDENTS
You might not expect Columbia Business School to be a haven for non-traditional students. After all, it has the reputation for being one of the top finance programs in the world — a feeder to Wall Street with top notch programming in marketing, real estate, international business, and management to boot. While the program brands itself as a “marriage of management fundamentals with data science and analytics,” it also boasts over 200 full-time faculty and adjuncts whose expertise ranges from media and technology to family business to value investing. And General Patton would be happy to learn that CBS is a popular destination for veterans too. And let’s not forget the school’s New York City location — a place populated with dreamers and immigrants looking to transform their lives.
Mélanie D’Mello Génin is one of these out-of-the-box students at Columbia Business School. A native of France, D’Mello Génin describes herself as a “classical harpist and producer passionate about immersive technologies, music, and empowering women.” Trained at Juilliard and the Paris Conservatoire, she has already recorded on the soundtrack to Netflix’s I’m Thinking of Ending Things. Her path hasn’t been easy, she writes. Rather than follow a traditional orchestra path, this first generation student has operated as a soloist, chamber musician, and artistic director in a “male-dominate industry.” And D’Mello Génin chose CBS because it caters specifically to students like her.
“CBS has an excellent track record of selecting brilliant art professionals and helping them to successfully pivot into roles at top consulting, VC and media companies,” she writes. “Materializing your MBA into a top job is a heavy lift for people with non-traditional backgrounds. We have many of the entrepreneurial and soft skills, but often people don’t know what to do with us. It takes a lot of translation work and convincing. It is a tremendous asset to have a school which values you and your skills and knows how to accompany you on this journey.”
A TONY AWARD NOMINEE AND AN OLYMPIC ATHLETE
D’Mello Génin isn’t the only artist residing at CBS’ Class of 2023. Dana M. Lerner was nominated for a Tony Award as a Broadway producer for Indecent. At the same time, she runs Red Pelican Creative, a social media company that caters to the arts and entertainment industries. Like D’Mello Génin, she followed an unusual path, balancing artistic consideration with keeping a boutique firm afloat amid a pandemic. However, Lerner also sees opportunity amid the onslaught, which is why she chose to pursue her MBA.
“If this past year has taught us anything, it’s that the entertainment industry and technology sphere are highly interconnected,” she observes. “We’ve seen the rise of streaming, digital releases, and various forms of virtual content created during the pandemic. I believe that trend will continue, and Columbia’s Media and Technology program stood out to me as an incredible opportunity to dive into this ever-morphing world head-first. With a wealth of resources and a tight knit community eager to learn from professors and each other, we can better understand the relationship between the two industries and push both towards the future.”
Athletes also fit the bill for non-traditional backgrounds. At CBS, you’ll find Alex Karwoski. An engineer by trade, he jokes that he has “rowed approximately the equivalent of three times around the Earth’s circumference.” He also competed for the U.S. Rowing team at the Olympic Games in 2016 and 2020. Like Lerner, COVID inevitably forced Karowski’s hand. In his case, it pushed him to make the most of his talents before “embark[ing] on a new adventure.”
“When the Olympics were postponed in March 2020, I quickly recognized that I was not ready to ‘end’ my rowing career without seeing the full cycle through. That decision meant that I would need to withdraw and re-apply to CBS for the Fall 2021 incoming class. The pandemic gave me a new outlook towards rowing – it was no longer something I felt like I wanted to do, but rather something that I needed to see to the end. Looking ahead to what is next for my life in general, I hope to gain insight on how to avoid situations that put me in that ‘need’ instead of ‘want’ state-of-mind.”
WORLD BANK AND FACEBOOK ALUMNI
Sydney Wade started out as an athlete too. In high school, she set her high school’s track and field record for the 400-meter run and the 4×400 relay. Since her athletic days, she has moved into the front office as a corporate communications manager for the Miami Dolphins and Hard Rock Stadium. Kilian Koffi has also stayed involved in athletics as a field hockey referee — with over a 100 games to his credit. While Koffi’s academic background — Economics and International Development — fit with a traditional MBA profile, his passions go far beyond his analyst role at the World Bank. For one, he organized last year’s World Bank Group Youth Summit.
“It was attended virtually by over 40,000 youth (18-35) from 150+ countries,” he explains. “We worked tirelessly to provide an interactive, cross-cultural experience that could lead to tangible solutions and connections. On top of the summit, we ended up developing and hosting five regional pre-summit discussion events in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Latin America. Here, between 400 and 1,000 local youth tuned in to engage with policy makers, development practitioners, and each other on topics ranging from ocean plastics to democracy. Building and managing a global team that have never met in person to put together this series of events was one of the most challenging and simultaneously most rewarding experiences of my career.”
You might not expect to see Sydney McNeal prowling the halls of Facebook in recent years. After all, she was neither techie nor quant. Instead, she had majored in Islamic Civilizations and Societies as an undergrad. On top of that, her first job involved helping the incarcerated “reintegrate” into Moroccan society. Eventually, she found herself working as a high value account manager at the social media giant. Now, she hopes to combine MBA tools and liberal arts background to “break new ground for queer women of color in business.”
“My biggest accomplishment is having worked in financial analytics with a liberal arts degree,” she admits. “It took a lot of work and time to keep up with my peers who did study finance as undergraduates, and I’m incredibly proud that I was able to succeed in that role. That accomplishment taught me the value of adaptability and the incredibly rewarding nature of facing a challenge head on.”
A STAR IS BORN
Tori Bell also beat the odds to land in an Ivy League school. Growing up as a “country girl” in Kansas, she studied at Agnes Scott College, a private women’s liberal arts college in Georgia with barely 1,000 students. Like McNeal, Bell found a career path at Facebook, working as a community programs manager. Here, she created Black Women at Facebook, a community that she built into over 2,000 members.
“As the organization leader, one of the issues across the board we saw within Black women in tech is that we struggled to level up in our careers and receive mentorship,” she writes. “Knowing this information, I implemented a career coaching program that matched our members with an external career coach, putting tangible resources behind this genuine issue. While the career programming has been enriching, I am very proud that every Black woman who enters Facebook has a community and a safe space to lean on.”
That wasn’t the only difference that Bell made. “I [also] started my own company called Inclusion Unpacked. Here, we lead early-stage founders and small businesses in implementing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion into their companies through an online diversity foundations program called “Inclusion School.” My big vision is for every new founder and small business owner to participate in this program and commit to allyship as they continue to scale and grow. Through Inclusion Unpacked, I have received media features in WhoWhatWear, Yahoo, and Girlboss.”
Before joining the Class of 2023, Edward Patterson found his calling in public service. Most recently the press secretary to U.S. Senator Chris Murphy, Patterson also worked as a senior analyst and project manager in the Obama White House for three years. In this role, he found joy in helping to “connect people with their government.”
“At the White House, I worked in the office responsible for facilitating and responding to all incoming correspondence addressed to President Obama, including selecting 10 letters daily for the president to read,” he notes. “Early in my tenure, I came across a powerful letter that a teacher wrote to the president about citizenship and the similarities they shared. I was able to elevate the letter to my director who sent it to the president himself. Upon reading, the president requested that the teacher be invited to the photo line when he visited the teacher’s town. This was one of my proudest moments as a public servant.”
That spirit extends to military service. Tamsyn Thompson, in true non-traditional style, became the first woman to “integrate, deploy, and qualify on a fast attack submarine” in the U.S. Navy. In contrast, Evan Brush served as an intelligence office in the U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (MARSOC). His long-term goal, he says, is to use CBS resources to build a new skill set and transition into the private sector.
“I look forward to building the quantitative toolkit I will need by learning from my incredible professors and classmates at CBS. I plan to recruit for consulting. I hope both when in consulting — and possibly in a subsequent career at a startup — to help bridge the gap between private sector innovation and our military. I would love to help bring cutting edge technology to our soldiers, sailors, and Marines around the world who need it most.”
Next Page: Interview with Assistant Dean Amanda Carlson
Page 3: Profiles of 11 Members of The Class of 2023
Original Source: poetsandquants.com
MBA Handicapping: Can You Punch Above Your Weight (GPA/GMAT) at Harvard/Stanford?
Shriya is a 27-year-old consultant working in London for a boutique firm. She applied to Stanford in round 2 last year and re-applied in round 2 this year, but had not gained an interview.
Her question: Has anyone ever gotten into Stanford on the third try?
Our answer: Not with a 690 GMAT score.
But Shriya does plan to retake the test, aimed for a 700-plus score and wants to apply again. She also plans to wider her options by applying to the first time to UC-Berkeley, UCLA, Wharton, Harvard, Stern and Kellogg.
Besides working as a consultant for two and one-half years, she also worked for Equiniti Group Plc, a London-based fintech firm for four and one-half years, during which she gained three promotions. She has a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences from the University of London.
In this episode of Fridays With Sandy, HBSGuru.com founder Sandy Kreisberg candidly tells Shriya to give up on a third try at Stanford and assesses her chances at her other target business schools.
DON’T MISS PREVIOUS FRIDAYS WITH SANDY EPISODES
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Original Article: poetsandquants.com
Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Ricardo Aaron Carrillo, Dartmouth College (Tuck)
Ricardo Aaron Carrillo
Hometown: Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico
Fun Fact About Yourself: In the last eight years, I have lived in seven cities on three different continents.
Undergraduate School and Major: ITESM—Tecnológico de Monterrey, Architecture
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Woods Bagot Architects, Senior Designer
What word best describes the Tuck MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far and why? Encouraging. From my application process to being admitted, I have seen this value in all Tuck students and alumni. Every Tuckie I have met has been so invested in helping me achieve my goals. People like Michael Barbe (T’22), Kristin Ng (T’22), and Sanjana Tikkoo (T’22) exhibited selfless support to me even before I was part of this family. Compared to other top schools, Tuckies truly surprise you with an unparalleled level of encouragement. It is simply unique; I’ve never seen anything like this.
Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? It would be the general management program, challenging core curriculum, student collaboration, and career outcomes. The general management program at Tuck allows you to gain skills to be successful in any industry you want. A combination of cases and traditional classes are used to gain the hard skills that complement case discussion. For me, being part of a school that took a structured core curriculum and had a collegial student body was crucial in my MBA school selection.
What course, club or activity excites you the most at Dartmouth Tuck? It is really hard to mention only one, but I will mention where I will be more involved. I am really excited to engage with Tuck Pride, the Finance Club, the Rugby Club, and the Center for Business, Government & Society. I am interested in Tuck Pride as I would love to attract even more LGBTQ+ individuals to our community and push forward LGBTQ+ representation in the business world. I also chose the Finance Club because I am fascinated by the power finance has to change the lives of many people. I chose the Rugby Club because I love to play rugby, and the Center for Business, Government & Society as I want to be more effective in creating social change.
What excites you the most about coming to live in Hanover? What is the one activity you can’t wait to do? The aspects that excite me the most about living in Hanover involve being in contact with nature, to have spaces to reflect on the big issues I want to solve and engage with my classmates 24/7. Hanover is a safe, friendly, and utterly charming place. One activity that I can’t wait to do is to play rugby. I love the comradery, collaboration, and open communication rugby brings out of each player.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I consider my biggest accomplishment to be the mentorship I offered kids, teenagers, and younger staff in my previous industry. Mentoring low-income kids and LGBTQ+ teenagers, while helping them to take positive changes in their lives, has been the best thing I’ve ever done.
How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? COVID-19 taught me a lot of lessons. It taught me to keep dreaming and be industrious while making positive change for a better society. The COVID-19 pandemic caused me to re-evaluate my life, goals, and relationships with others. In my career, I realized that I wanted to be a more effective agent of change for minorities—women, LGBTQ+, and racial minorities—around the world.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? I am pursuing an MBA because of the impact it allows you to have in the world. I want to have a positive imprint on our planet. An MBA will help me develop the skills and credibility to bring more diversity to the workplace, to help others get better jobs, improve society, and work on nonprofit endeavors. After graduation, I hope to continue working in a company that allows me to advocate for more diversity and opportunities for minority groups while creating wealth for everybody.
What other MBA programs did you apply to? Harvard, Wharton, Oxford, LBS, Stanford, and Yale.
What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA program? I love this question! First, I would like to say there is no formula. Tuck is transparent in how applications are evaluated and what the school is looking for. Tuck looks for smart, accomplished, aware, and encouraging individuals.
Second, take the GMAT or GRE and score at or above the school mean. However, if you have taken it a few times and are still below the mean score, do not let it deter you from applying. Schools recognize that you are more than a score. On this subject, I personally recommend test prep services like GregMat, who was a game changer in my preparation.
Third, get to know Tuck. Go to the school’s Diversity Conference (DivCo) and Women in Business Conference. Attend admissions events, meet ambassadors, engage with clubs, and talk to alumni. I view Tuck as a family, not just classmates or a “network.” I really mean family, where you develop trust with classmates and alumni, and people will have your back. For this reason, I encourage you to get to know the family and demonstrate how you can contribute to the community here.
Fourth, do a lot of self-reflection on your essays, show your true self, be vulnerable, and leave your ego at the door.
DON’T MISS: MEET DARTMOUTH TUCK’S MBA CLASS OF 2023
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Original Source: poetsandquants.com
Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Francisca Carpentier, Dartmouth College (Tuck)
“A curious learner who firmly believes that we change the world with our day-to-day actions.”
Hometown: Santiago, Chile
Fun Fact About Yourself: I am probably among very few women arriving at their MBA experience pregnant! My husband is a fellow Tuckie, and the school was very supportive with planning how to approach this academic year. We couldn’t be more excited. Many classmates have already volunteered to babysit!
Undergraduate School and Major: Bachelor of Business Administration, Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile and Master of Science in Economics from Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Associate at SummaPartners, a boutique firm founded by experienced consultants to join the worlds of management consulting and private equity.
What word best describes the Tuck MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far and why? Seekers. Tuck students are open to change and learning; students come here to question themselves and be questioned, to have an authentic transformational experience. I am also impressed by how humble successful Tuck alumni are, transmitting that same will to keep learning and challenging themselves.
Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? I wanted a small school, a place where I would get to know my classmates and professors and truly connect. Before enrolling, every Tuckie I spoke with would always reflect on how transformative their two years at Tuck were and how Hanover was a special place to make human connections and life decisions. That’s what I was looking for in my MBA experience.
What course, club or activity excites you the most at Dartmouth Tuck? Everything is exciting, but I don’t think TuckGO can be topped. The idea of traveling the world with a group of classmates and a professor to learn about the most relevant topics in our global economy is an experience I am sure no one could forget.
What excites you the most about coming to live in Hanover? What is the one activity you can’t wait to do? It is living in a place far from the noise and rhythm of the city. I’ve always lived in big cities, and I love it, but doing my MBA in a small place where I could focus on the experience resonated with me.
The one activity I can’t wait to do is skiing. I need to go to the Dartmouth Skiway at least once to say I did it!
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: My first project as an associate was to reduce a company’s size, given the risk profile of some of its operations. It was the biggest company in its industry in the region, so the project’s impact was huge. It was a multi-variable problem, where we had to work on several scenarios and consider multiple effects in a short time. We built a cohesive team with the client and finally came up with a well-thought-out solution. We accompanied the company through implementation and managed to reduce over 40% of accidents in a year, positively impacting the company’s results. In the beginning, we truly believed it wasn’t possible, and I will never forget an experienced partner telling me this was the most fun and challenging project he had worked on.
How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? I think working on challenging projects without having day-to-day team interactions had an impact on me. I realized a huge part of why I enjoyed my job so much was the great team I was surrounded by and how those small breaks and jokes throughout the day truly made a difference. It changed my career because I now know how important it is for me to work with a cohesive team with whom I can have fun and learn from. It’s more about the people than the role, and that was a great life lesson.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? After four years working alongside great leaders and mentors, I was more aware than ever of the dreams I had as a future leader and the gaps I needed to close to become that leader. After my MBA, I hope to join the strategic team of a large tech firm. I enjoyed consulting in tech and would like to keep growing on strategic roles in that industry because I genuinely believe those companies are changing the world.
What other MBA programs did you apply to? Darden
What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA program? Talk with Tuckies! They are the most open community I’ve known, and you will never meet anybody more willing to talk about Tuck, Dartmouth, and Hanover than alumni: they jump at the opportunity and truly enjoy it. So go through Linkedin. Find a Tuckie you can relate to because of your experience, what you want to do after your MBA, place of birth, or whatever reason and write; I always got an answer!
DON’T MISS: MEET DARTMOUTH TUCK’S MBA CLASS OF 2023
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Source Here: poetsandquants.com
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