The Leading Independent
Resource for Top-tier MBA
Home » Blog » Real Humans of MBA Students » Real Humans of Washington University Olin’s MBA Class of 2022 » Page 4

Real Humans of Washington University Olin’s MBA Class of 2022

Image for Real Humans of Washington University Olin’s MBA Class of 2022

Julian Hernandez, Olin MBA Class of 2022

Age: 29
Hometown: Bogota, Colombia
Undergraduate Institution and Major: Universidad de Los Andes, Business Administration.
Pre-MBA Work Experience (years, industry): 6 years of experience in Airlines, Telecommunications, and Commercial Banking.

Why business school? Why now?
An MBA was always a goal I had since my childhood and after working for 6 years in different industries, I decided that it was the right time to take the next step in my career. Additionally, I wanted to live the international experience of living abroad and represent my country and Latin America in a top business school.

Business school is not only about strengthening your knowledge of core areas and develop a comprehensive view of business, but also to make it from a managerial perspective. It means the opportunity to understand how different factors can affect the performance of organizations and how you as a future leader can contribute and add value by making better decisions for both the business and society.

Also, it is the opportunity to build an invaluable network of talented professionals from your cohort, alumni community, your faculty, and businesspeople you meet along the way.

Why Olin? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
Since the very first moment that I had the opportunity to meet Washington University and Olin faculty in different MBA fairs, I felt that there was a connection between what I was looking for in an MBA and what Olin’s program had to offer me.

Olin’s global outlook and experiential learning approach is a great combination when talking about how to apply classroom learnings on real challenges for real organizations while working together with a diverse cohort of students with a variety of different cultural and professional backgrounds. Also, Olin’s value-based and data-driven approach for better decision making is a clear message of the importance of being leaders “informed by numbers, driven by principles.”

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2022?
To have a strong professional background and versatile profile in multiple industries and positions has led me to understand economic development from an international perspective, a fundamental aspect to add value and contribute to the MBA class when analyzing real-world business situations.

Fun fact that didn’t get included on your application?
My frustrated childhood dream was to be a professional soccer and/or golf player. I have always known about the importance of sports for Universities, therefore I wanted to let them know how passionate I’m with sports. However, despite not achieving that dream I usually play with my family and friends whenever I can.

Post-MBA career interests?
Brand/Product Management or Strategy/Management Consulting.

Advice to current prospective applicants:
–One thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?

There are a couple of things that I would definitely repeat. First, to talk with the current first and second-year students as part of your decision. In my case, it was impressive how important it was to obtain real descriptions of the program, the different career options, the university, and the city. Second, to attend almost every MBA fair. This is not only a great way for you as a prospective student to have an integral view of the different programs and how each one can add value according to your career goals, but also it is a great opportunity for you to start building your network with faculty staff.

–One thing you would change or do differently?
Today I can say that I would balance better my time and give the same importance to all components of the application process. At some point, I was obsessed with achieving the best result possible in the GMAT/GRE, but then I realized how crucial it was to have a holistic application and to give the same importance to the essays and the interviews. The exam is just another factor in the decision, and from my perspective, a number cannot give an accurate description of yourself from a personal or professional perspective.

–Part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
I would say that all parts are very important, but the key is to find the right balance to have an outstanding process and showcase your application. In my case, what helped me get through the process was to believe in my personal capabilities and professional skills. I was convinced that my diverse experience, my career goals and what I was looking for in an MBA made me a valuable addition to Olin. As many prospective students will hear, is all about “telling your story” (it’s true!).

What is your initial impression of Olin’s students/culture/community?
My impression is all about the pride and sense of belonging that students and alumni have during their time at the university and beyond graduation. No matter if you are a first-year or a second-year student, everyone is always going to be ready to help you. Additionally, Olin’s top-quality faculty staff and Weston Career Center are always looking for different options for students to receive exhaustive preparation and find the best job in an increasingly competitive market.

One thing you have learned about Olin that has surprised you?
It has surprised me the importance that Olin Business School and Washington University have in the development of St. Louis as an innovative and entrepreneurial hub of the country. Here students have a wide framework of experiential learning and hands-on opportunities for you to work on real projects from real organizations and contribute to their development, while at the same time making a positive impact in the community.

Thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
It can sound like something very common today but I’m very anxious to see how COVID can continue affecting our MBA experience and short-run career opportunities. Nevertheless, it is also a great opportunity to build on your resilience and your adaptability to new situations, which are also valuable leadership skills.

Thing you are most excited about in your first year?
To meet all the awesome Class of 2022! It has been really exciting to study with so many talented people from different cultures and professional backgrounds in the same classroom (and/or zoom session). Because of the pandemic, many students are still in their home country, therefore I still have the opportunity to meet with more people of my cohort.

Christina Griffith
Christina Griffith is a writer and editor based in Philadelphia. She specializes in covering education, science, and history, and has experience in research and interviews, magazine content, and web content writing.