Focus Area: General management, IT
Hometown: Norton Shores, MI
Education: Saint Mary’s College (political science & psychology)
Before Smith: Peace Corps
Extracurricular Activities: ChangeTheWorld Consulting, MBAA Track Representative, Emerging Markets Association, Human Capital Association, Net Impact, Smith Association of Women MBAs (SAWMBA)
Why did you choose to attend the Smith School of Business?
I was initially drawn to Smith because of the international focus and proximity to Washington, DC. My background includes the Peace Corps and I’m interested in a career in international women’s development, so I wanted to be close to all the professional opportunities with non-profits, think tanks, and NGO’s that are available in the area.
While Smith’s location is what initially caught my attention, I was also extremely impressed with the high level of student satisfaction. Both the rankings I read and the students I talked to were very pleased with the resources, support, and education they were receiving at Smith. The praise from students for Smith and its opportunities was overwhelming which made my choice to attend Smith easy.
In your opinion, what makes the Smith MBA program unique?
I was blown away by the preparation and attention the faculty and staff provided to assist with the transition into the program. The career coaches did everything possible—from resume and cover letter reviews to interview practice and webinars on career conferences—to ensure that we were prepared to hit the ground running once classes started.
When I was doing my own research on how to best prepare to enter an MBA program, many MBA graduates and professors recommended reviewing basic business principles in accounting and finance as well as building a strong foundation in Excel. I was looking to start my own preparations, but Smith beat me to the punch. The online pre-coursework was exactly what everyone was prescribing to ensure a smooth start to a successful MBA experience.
What advice would you give to future Smith MBA candidates?
Take time to prepare and utilize your resources. I’m sure there are lot more exciting ways to spend your time the summer before starting at Smith than doing the pre-coursework materials, preparing your resume and cover letter, and sharpening your interview skills. But it’s important to take the time to do these things in order to optimize the opportunities at Smith once classes start in the fall.