When I came to MIT Sloan to visit I was immediately taken back both by how smart everyone was on campus, but also just how down to earth they were. The students clearly felt a real passion for what they were studying and a true commitment to the institution. I sat in on a business law class with John Akula, and his excitement for what he was teaching along with the student's interest and engagement level made it really difficult to sit there and not be inspired by what they were doing. And that was exactly the kind of experience I wanted from my MBA. If you are going to go back to graduate school and invest a lot of time and energy and money it may as well be with people who really care about what they are doing and people who feel passionate about being leaders in business.
I feel really lucky to be part of a truly diverse learning environment. I have learned so much from my classmates. Everyday I come to school and learn about a new industry or I learn about one of my classmates who's pioneering a new technology, or applying for a new patent, or launching a new business and I can't help but be driven by that. If you are someone who cares about achieving at a higher level, I think you can't show up to Sloan and not be energized by the people around you.
Personally my interest is in working in marketing and sports. I have always been involved in sports, I grew up an athlete, I was a volleyball player in college, I am an avid runner, and I think one of the reasons to return to school is to go back to what you are most passionate about and translate that into a career. MIT's sports business conference is one of the leading conferences in the U.S. and I was really excited and happy to be a part of it. Last year we brought together a panel called Defending the Title, which was all about how you defend a world championship. We had leaders and GM's from all the top four championship teams and it was moderated by Peter Gammons. To me, having frank conversations like that, that are driven by student learning is what MIT Sloan is all about. People are really excited because they know they get to be part of something bigger than themselves and that MIT Sloan is really on the cutting edge, not only of the analytic side of sports business but also in terms of how the industry is growing and changing in front of our eyes.
Last summer I worked for the New England Patriots and I can say this experience provided me with unique insight into the sports world that I never would have had otherwise. They are obviously on the front page everyday for winning games and being a championship team and yet I got to see how they are struggling with how to create the best foundation possible, and how to create new leaders, and how to continue to develop their players as leaders. It certainly provided me with a chance to think creatively about problems, and gain experience in an industry I was passionate about and certainly MIT Sloan is what opened the door for that opportunity.