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Real Humans of Rice Jones’ MBA Class of 2020

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Dominic Smith, Rice Jones MBA Class of 2020

Dominic Smith, Rice Jones MBA Class of 2020

Age: 32
Hometown: Memphis, TN
Undergraduate Institution and Major: Morehouse College and BS Mathematics
Graduate Institution and Major: University of Michigan and MS Aerospace Engineering
Pre-MBA Work Experience: 8 years as a Subsea Controls Engineer

Why business school? Why now?
The MBA has always been a goal of mine. It is one of the most versatile degrees that gives you the tools to lead organizations. This was the perfect time because I needed to be challenged and pushed. I had reached the point where my goals and my actions were not aligned, therefore, I took this opportunity to realign them.

Why Rice Unversity? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
Rice is the leading school in producing professionals that work in energy. I’ve been in the city of Houston for 8 years and absolutely love it. I wanted to remain in the city and continue to build and leverage my network within the city.

The most influential deciding factor was the culture of the city. Houston is a very diverse, southern city. The food, people and weather are excellent create an atmosphere that is hard to attain anywhere else.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2020?
I think that my class has many amazing individuals that have talents you often only get to read about.

With that said, I believe I bring intellectual curiosity, resilience and grit to the class of 2020. The MBA is a tough undertaking that will require all of these qualities.

Fun fact that didn’t get included on your application?
Most people don’t know that I am a huge nerd. I love to solve math problems and watch anime.

Post-MBA career interests?
My goal is to become an energy investment banker in the city of Houston.

Advice to current prospective applicants:

–One thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
Be yourself!!! You want a school that accepts you for you and not your representative. Also, keep in mind that not only are schools interviewing you for admittance, but also you are interviewing them to have the opportunity of having you on campus.

–One thing you would change or do differently?
I would give myself more time to prepare for school. I worked until the Friday before school and that was a big mistake.

–Part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
I enjoyed every part of my experience. I don’t think there is a part that I would skip.

What is your initial impression of Rice’s students/culture/community?
Rice has a very welcoming atmosphere. The administration demonstrated at every turn that they wanted me here. The 2nd year students are even more awesome. Anything they can help with, they will. Rice is simply amazing and I couldn’t be happier with my decision.

One thing you have learned about Rice that has surprised you?
I was surprised at the efficiency of the clubs. If you know your career path, the clubs have a process to get you where you want to be. If you don’t know what you want to do, the clubs and school have many different opportunities for you to interact with the fields that may interest you

Thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
I am a natural introvert and networking can sometimes be overwhelming. However, Rice does a great job in helping get past the anxiety.

Thing you are most excited about in your first year?
I am most excited about the new friends I will make at Rice. I think this will be the most rewarding aspect of business school.

Clear Admit Resources
We hope you enjoyed meeting these Rice / Jones students. As you work on your Rice / Jones MBA essays and application, we encourage you to consider all of Clear Admit’s Rice / Jones offerings:

Jonathan Pfeffer
Jonathan Pfeffer joined the Clear Admit and MetroMBA teams in 2015 after spending several years as an arts/culture writer, editor, and radio producer. In addition to his role as Contributing Writer at MetroMBA and Contributing Editor at Clear Admit, he was also a co-founder of the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast. He holds a BA in Film/Video, Ethnomusicology, and Media Studies from Oberlin College.