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Real Humans of the OSU Fisher MBA Class of 2023

osu fisher mba class

Michelle Weingartner, OSU Fisher’s MBA Class of 2023

Age: 34
Hometown: Findlay, Ohio
Undergraduate Institution and Major: The Ohio State University; Marketing
Pre-MBA Work Experience (years, industry): I have worked in a marketing capacity in several industries from consumer-packaged goods to commodities, retail, and even education. These experiences have helped shape my understanding of diverse consumers and marketplaces.

Why did you make the decision to attend business school? Why now?
The pandemic has sped up the need for cross functional leadership. I knew I needed to attend business school to gain a deeper understanding of finance, accounting and operations to strengthen my cross functional skills. It is critical to understand how the decisions I make in marketing will affect and change the deliverables in other areas.

Why did you choose OSU Fisher? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
Fisher was the only choice for me! When you begin to compare the top tier programs there are many similarities when it comes to the academic offerings and resources. Fisher’s differentiator is the amazing people! To become a principled leader, you need to surround yourself with those who are authentic, value driven and have global perspective; Fisher’s cohorts and professors exemplify these traits. I am in awe of the unique backgrounds and experiences my classmates have had and I am trying to learn from them daily.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2023?
My differentiating factor is my age and experience. These factors have helped me cultivate a long-term vision for the future. During an MBA program, it is easy to focus on the short term, accounting exams, recruiting fairs, group projects. To truly benefit from this experience, you need to ask the bigger questions. How can I give back to my college community? How will I make the greatest impact? What is my legacy?

Tell us a fun fact that didn’t get included on your application:
Last year, I started to take tennis lessons. It has been so exciting learning a new sport and my coach regularly gives me tough feedback. Playing doubles allows me to practice my strategy skills and I must make quick decisions based on statistics and where my competition is positioned. It is the perfect sport to prepare you for the business world!

Post-MBA career interests:
Upon completing my MBA I want to work in Brand Management or Marketing Strategy. I am targeting several industries: CPG, healthcare, and consumer banking. All the companies I am interested in allow MBA graduates to take on meaningful projects quickly and initiate changes that benefit the consumers.

Advice for Current Prospective Applicants:

– What is one thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
Research. I recommend putting in the time to find out as much as you can about the program before you start the application. Most importantly, you need to determine what elements of an MBA program are non-negotiables and what type of culture you can see yourself succeeding in.

– What is one thing you would change or do differently?
I would have connected with more alumni. I was able to speak to current students, but alumni can be a valuable resource to gage if the program prepared them and gave them the tools to be successful 5, 10 or even 15 years later.

– What is one part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
One of the most difficult part of the application was the essays. It can be challenging to be introspective and really articulate why an MBA, why now and why Fisher. I am so glad the essays are part of the process! These questions are key in deciding if an MBA aligns with your goals and it will help you prepare for the company recruiting process.

What is your initial impression of the OSU Fisher students/culture/community?
Wow! This amazing community is what sets OSU apart. There are over 500,000 alumni all over the world. It doesn’t matter if you have moved across the country or to a new country; there will be a buckeye waiting willing to connect and help you. I have leaned on Fisher alumni several times during the program, and they are always eager to support a buckeye.

What is one thing you have learned about OSU Fisher that has surprised you?
I was surprised, by the multitude of resources Fisher offers students. They are a leader in experiential learning curriculum, and they provide these experiences through programs like the Social Impact Challenge, Global Applied Programs, Max Problem Solving, and Coaching.

Has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your personal application or admissions process in any way? If so, how?
Unfortunately, because of COVID-19 I was not able to connect with the admissions team and current students in person or tour the school. Luckily, Fisher did a wonderful job of trying to overcome these obstacles with virtual meetings and prospective students are now able to visit campus to learn more about the program in person.

What is one thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
I was most anxious about the case competitions. As a prospective MBA student, you hear so much about the case experience and you do not know what to expect. The good news is your program will start teaching you how to de-construct and analyze cases day one.

What is one thing you are most excited about in your first year?
In the Spring, we complete Fisher’s Business Lab Project. This opportunity allows students to work with a company and learn how to define and scope problems. So often, we are focused on the solution or result. The Business Lab Project challenges to students to start at the beginning and develop the problem. 

Posted in: Real Humans of MBA Class of 2023, Real Humans of MBA Students

Schools: Ohio State / Fisher

About the Author

Lauren Wakal

Lauren Wakal has been covering the MBA admissions space for more than a decade, from in-depth business school profiles to weekly breaking news and more.

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