Real Humans of the Georgetown McDonough MBA Class of 2019
Summi Sinha, Georgetown McDonough Class of 2019
Hometown: I was born and brought up in a very small town named Hazaribagh in Eastern India.
Undergraduate Institution and Major: Kings College London (United Kingdom), M.Sc in HRM and org analysis; Vinoba Bhave University (India), B.Sc (Hons) in chemistry
Pre-MBA Work Experience: Financial services and non-profit
Why business school? Why now? All my life, I have enjoyed solving complex problems—whether overcoming the barriers of an upbringing in a conservative family in India or designing solutions to anticipate and address regulatory challenges in financial services. I was at a stage in my career where I realized that I wanted to further develop my problem-solving skills in an international environment, and an MBA provided an accelerated channel for this transition in two interconnected ways: first, a platform to build professional relationships and second, gain diverse learning experiences through opportunities to engage with world-class faculty, talented classmates and experienced industry professionals.
Why Georgetown McDonough? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend? Three major factors—strong community and values, well-rounded business education, and good quality of life. Georgetown McDonough excels in all the three metrics. The school is renowned for its commitment to principled leadership, and the student body truly embodies this value as I found out in my interactions with alumni during my research and now as a current student. The Georgetown McDonough community inspires you to be your best self in a collaborative way, and I am proud to be a member of this community. Everyone that I’ve met so far in the first semester has been talented, fun and very open-minded. The number of opportunities available for holistic learning is truly amazing—in the first semester itself, along with a challenging core curriculum, the school provides opportunities such as the highly selective Impact Consulting Program to gain experience in different business areas with a strong focus on leadership development. Finally, the location of the school in Washington D.C., was a huge draw for me. The location of the school brings together the best of both worlds: a quaint and beautiful Georgetown neighborhood with close access to the business hub which has offices of many fortune 500 firms.
What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2019? The class of 2019 is exceptional in the diversity that each one of us brings to the community. I think my most valuable contributions are my global values and experience, and my passion for exploring new challenges. Before starting my MBA, I had set two major goals for myself—first was to seek new experiences, and second was to connect with diverse groups of people. In the first semester, I have performed more than 30 hours of community service, successfully run for a leadership position on the Student Government Association (that involved preparing for a speech and interviews with Program Office!), and participated in Georgetown annual book drive. Through these and other experiences, I have tried to push myself out of my comfort zone and contributed to the collective learning of the community.
Fun fact that didn’t get included on your application? As a kid, I wanted to join the FBI; but only because I wanted to help Agents Mulder and Scully (from the X-Files) find the “Truth Out There”!
Post-MBA career interests? Consulting and general management
Advice to current prospective applicants:
–One thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process? Research all target schools by speaking with as many alumni and current students. These conversations provide a much more comprehensive picture of the program and student experience than the information available online.
–One thing you would change or do differently? I would worry less about the entire application process.
–Part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it? I would spend less time on the online research about schools that I instinctively felt were not a good fit. What helped me get through the entire application process was taking out time to relax by doing something that I enjoyed such as going on long walks.
Greatest highlight so far at Georgetown McDonough? The opportunity to work in different teams: the program is designed in a way that allows you to engage with different groups of students and build strong relationships with diverse groups of people. I believe that this is one of the best ways to develop the skills for our post-MBA careers. I have already worked in three different project teams so far! What has really stood for me during my interactions is how open my team mates have been in listening to different perspectives when we are struggling to find common ground on a project idea or a difficult concept. Each club or activity that I have explored has provided an opportunity to learn from the diversity of thought and ideas that pervades the Georgetown McDonough community.
One thing about Georgetown McDonough that you didn’t expect before arriving? How important working in teams would be, not only for the success of every project but also the immense value it will add to the MBA experience.
Thing you are most anxious about in your first year? Making the right trade-offs to make the most of my experience.
Thing you are most excited about in your first year? Georgetown provides a variety of opportunities to develop a global mindset and leadership skills. There are multiple avenues such as community consulting programs, immersion programs, and interdisciplinary certificate programs, to name a few. I am excited about contributing to the Georgetown McDonough community through my leadership roles, and exploring different opportunities such as the Executive Challenge and the Global Business Experience. I have enjoyed learning from, and interacting and making friends with people from diverse backgrounds and nationalities, and am looking forward to further growing these relationships.