Author: Erica Zendell

Erica Zendell

Erica Zendell is a MBA Candidate in the MIT Sloan Class of 2016. A former HBS case writer and researcher of contemporary China, she aspires to work as a Product Manager at the crossroads of the real and digital worlds of retail. When not hitting the books, she hosts a podcast with a classmate called "The Business of Being Awesome" focused on inspiring MBAs to find work they love after business school, even if it means going off the beaten path (

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To the Class of 2016: Here’s to the Next Chapter

Sweet Sixteens,
Because my greatest memories of my Sloan experience have been grounded in storytelling, I’d like to begin this final post reflecting on our story together as the Class of 2016:
In the first semester, our story began. We moved quickly from knowing each other based on where we were from … Read more 

To the Class of 2017: Get Ready for Your Second Chance

While I don’t have regrets about my MBA experience, I’d be lying if I said there was nothing I wish I’d done differently. There are plenty of things I’d have changed about my second year, in particular, from classes I wish I’d taken to places I wish I’d traveled. If … Read more 

To the Class of 2018: Prepare for the Extraordinary

Most of you won’t get the chance to know me unless you choose to listen to “The Business of Being Awesome” podcast I started with a fellow Sloanie (highly encouraged) or choose to reach out to me for alumni networking purposes (happy to connect). But in hopes of having you … Read more 

“Across the River and Out of my Comfort Zone”: A Sloanie Sits in at HBS

With less than 3 months until graduation, I’m actively crossing things off of my MBA bucket list. One of the biggest items I wanted to do before I graduated? To cross-register for a course outside of MIT.
If I had one more year, I’d try to get into the “Making of a Politician” … Read more 

Saving the best for last (semester): resolutions for a final term at MIT Sloan

I often tell people that business school is the college experience I never had, academically, personally, and professionally. As an undergraduate, my academic life was overly tied to my GPA, my social life largely circumscribed to the people I sang with or who shared my meal plan, and my would-be … Read more 

Action (Un)Learning

As we’re reaching the end of winter break, IAP, and the Action Learning journey, I’m prepared for the conversation that will plague me for the first two weeks of the spring semester and looks something like this:
[Erica and Sloan Friend make eye contact in E62, E51, or the newly-renovated E52. Smile, … Read more 

Outsider on the Inside

Business school is a place where a handful of successful people in their twenties and thirties are handpicked by the Admissions Gods to receive a free pass to acting ten years younger for two years.
It makes sense. Take people who’ve spent the last few years of their lives hacking it … Read more 

The Business School “Balance Sheet”

Speaking as a MBA with plans to enter the retail industry after graduation, I couldn’t help but spend my Thanksgiving break thinking deeply about shopping. I’m a notorious bargain-hunter and well before business school was constantly fascinated by why and how people buy what they buy, and by the manifold … Read more 

Testing Your Parachute: Reflections on Teamwork in Business School

Ask students in top MBA programs across the country and they’ll tell you there’s no shortage of teamwork in business school. Working on teams for courses is so common that it should cease to be a selling point for any given institution. And it’s with good reason that MBA programs, … Read more 

“Building on that”: MBA Life in 2nd Year and Notes to my 1st-Year Self

Coming back for your second year of business school is a lot like being a senior in high school. Especially at MIT, where the majority of students in Course 15 are here for one-year programs, being a second-year MBA can make you feel like “Big Kid” on campus. Returning from … Read more