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Real Humans of MBA Students: Cambridge Judge Class of 2022

cambridge mba class of 2022

cambridge mba class of 2022Linh Pham (David), Cambridge Judge MBA Class of 2022

Age: 27
Hometown: Hai Duong, Vietnam
Undergraduate Institution and Major: National Economics University, Hanoi, Vietnam
Pre-MBA Work Experience (years, industry): 5 years experience in finance and consulting.

Why did you make the decision to attend business school? Why now?
I always hope that I can help Southeast Asian countries to build more international brands and businesses in the future. I have a lot of experience in operations through my consulting career. In the short term, I want to move to a more strategic role (strategy in tech firm or strategy consulting) to complete my skills. In the long term, I want to move to tech entrepreneurship and to achieve my long-term goal. Therefore, doing an MBA is the right move for me.

Why did you choose Cambridge Judge? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
I wanted to do a 1-year MBA with a great brand name, network, and good outcomes in tech entrepreneurship and consulting. Cambridge, one of the top 5 universities in the world with the best entrepreneurship ecosystem in UK and EU, attracted me.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2023?
I love to build communities that would benefit a great number of people and I have a ”get it done” attitude with rapid speed. These two factors push me to be involved in many societies and Special Interest groups in Judge Business School and contribute to their activities and management.

Tell us a fun fact that didn’t get included on your application:
I love to dance and would love to learn it properly, especially ballet.

Post-MBA career interests:
Short term, move back to Asia to work for a top tech and consulting firm. Long term, move to tech entrepreneurship.

Advice for Current Prospective Applicants:
–What is one thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
Talk to current MBA students and alumni more about what the schools that you apply to are strong in and what can they offer you. I only realized that Cambridge was my best fit when the school offered me a place in their 2021-2022 cohort. Understanding the school well will help you to have better essays and interviews to get into the school.

–What is one thing you would change or do differently?
My goal was very clear and I did not have much time, was rushing to study GMAT, IELTS and apply within few months while I was working 16 hours per day. I only applied to Cambridge and Oxford, but if I had time I would have applied to more schools like Harvard… It is worth applying to different schools then choosing the best fit for you, it can bring some connections to.

–What is one part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
I studied for the GMAT within 3 months of taking it while working fulltime (16 hours per day) and got a quant score of 51/51. I think that it is troublesome and unfair. People who have English education since high school will have a much better advantage to people from other parts of the world or from humble backgrounds, especially for the verbal part. Then schools and magazines use it as one of the important criteria for admission and scholarship. It creates more inequality. We should have a way to improve that system. My country’s system is a good system for GMAT to follow. They will look at the situation of candidate and reward some additional score (for example, maximum score is 30. Students will be rewarded 1 additional score on top of their real result if the student was from rural, mountainous area where you do not have chance to have a good education like other parts of the country).

What is your initial impression of the Cambridge Judge students/culture/community?
Judge Business School has around 1000 students, including Master in Entrepreneurship, EMBA, MPhil, PhD. They are amazing people. Many of them have interesting careers, successful start-ups or great connections. Very dynamic and international environment.

What is one thing you have learned about Cambridge Judge that has surprised you?
Cambridge is a big hub for biotech, cleantech, deep tech,… which are very important for the world and worth to invest in and develop. Judge students play an important role to commercialize those breakthrough inventions.

Has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your personal application or admissions process in any way? If so, how?
Covid brought me both good luck and bad luck. I was going to establish a new department for my company in a new country. But because of Covid, I am unable to do it, and my career development has been affected. But, it gave me the time to rethink myself and re-value myself. It gave me time and money (through my investment and family’s investment) to apply for an MBA (which I had wanted to do since 2019).

What is one thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
Too many interesting activities, too many interesting project and program in Cambridge to attend. Too many interesting people to meet. But 1 day only has 24 hours 🙂

What is one thing you are most excited about in your first year?
I met some very amazing people that open a whole new world for me. Really love to spend time with them.

Posted in: Real Humans of MBA Class of 2022, Real Humans of MBA Students

Schools: Cambridge / Judge

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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