Professionally, my overall goal is to make a long-term positive impact in the world around me. After the terrorist attacks of 9/11, I knew I wanted to contribute in any way I could, and the military was a great first step. I attended West Point, and after my active service was complete, I took a job in consulting. My skill set was focused on improving systems and finding ways to increase efficiencies. What could be more impactful than helping people realize their dreams by assisting the organizations they work for?
I was a senior strategy and consulting analyst at Accenture, aligned with the communication, media, and technology group, before Yale SOM. It was a good fit, given my academic background in engineering and my military training. But I realized that I could really extend my influence by learning more about the inner workings of business—functions like finance, accounting, and corporate strategy.
I knew Yale SOM was the school for me the first time I saw Evans Hall during interview weekend. I had just landed in Hartford at 12:30 a.m. and slept a few hours before getting up to take the train to New Haven. I walked through town, and then suddenly I saw it: this massive glass building with all of these professionals in the halls or tucked into nooks, discussing projects. I remember two conversations I heard while I was checking out the student lounge. One was about sustainable water management in India, and the other about a marketing campaign for a local company. I was hooked! I knew I had to be a part of this amazing culture.
Much of my worldview has been shaped by serving as an Army officer. Between an atypical undergrad college experience and a military career beginning, relating to my new classmates has been one of my more significant challenges.
But Yale’s commitment to being the number one business school for military veterans goes far beyond the financial assistance. The Veterans Club is like a second home, and Yale SOM’s culture and mission mesh immediately with the military “one team, one fight” spirit. From the start, I had multiple classmates making sincere efforts to include my ideas and opinions and engage me with our cohort.
The Career Development Office, its resources, and the student clubs also provide an incredible amount of support. For someone who’s had little exposure to the wider corporate world, I’ve learned about entire industries and recruiting processes I was completely unaware of.