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Real Humans of the Dartmouth Tuck MBA Class of 2023

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dartmouth mba class of 2023Jasmine Joda, Dartmouth Tuck MBA Class of 2023

Age: 28
Hometown: Bloomington, Illinois
Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, Accountancy
Pre-MBA Work Experience (years, industry): 6 years, corporate retail (1 year) and consulting (5 years)

Why did you make the decision to attend business school? Why now?
I knew I wanted to go to business school to optimize my leadership and impact. While I loved the fast pace of consulting, I recognized that I wanted to shift my efforts to bring my passion to work every day. All of my client leader counterparts were MBAs, so I knew it was a natural next step in my career.

Why did you choose Tuck? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
I chose Tuck because of the community! Each and every Tuckie I spoke with genuinely wanted to help me in some way and were incredibly honest about their experience. I also knew I wanted a program where you can’t hide. As someone that’s naturally reserved, Tuck was the perfect size for me to break out of my shell and develop deeper relationships.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2023?
I think my most valuable contribution to the class of 2023 is my tenacity. In the short time here, I’ve dived right in to being vocal about diversity, equity, and inclusion. Tuck is a unique community where everyone wants to do their part to make the community better and I’m energized I’ve found opportunities to make an impact here.

Tell us a fun fact that didn’t get included on your application:
One fun fact that did not get included in my application was my first job ever. At 14, I had the privilege of working the drive-thru at McDonald’s. Nothing builds resilience like the lunch time rush on a Saturday!

Post-MBA career interests:
Entertainment/media or technology

Advice for Current Prospective Applicants:
–What is one thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
If you’re interested in Tuck, attend DivCo! DivCo was a wonderful opportunity to get a real sample into how the Tuck community operates. It was apparent that the entire community worked together to make it a success and the programming was intentional. I walked away inspired and knew that Tuck was the place for me.

–What is one thing you would change or do differently?
Stop comparing myself to others. Your journey, experience, and perspective are truly only something you can convey. All you can do is trust the process and know everyone always ends up where they’re meant to be.

–What is one part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
Of course, the GMAT! I took the GMAT six times because I’m stubborn. My family was integral to my GMAT journey. During the pandemic, we all lived together so having their support (and many prayers) kept me going when I felt like I couldn’t study anymore. The great news is that applications are holistic, so spending time on bringing my entire self to the application truly paid off.

What is your initial impression of Dartmouth Tuck’s students/culture/community?
My initial impression of the Tuck culture is that we are all extremely intentional about being here. I think that’s what makes the community so special, it cultivates a great support system.

What is one thing you have learned about Tuck that has surprised you?
I’ve found our class size is perfect for me. I love seeing my classmates and having the luxury of seeing familiar faces.

Has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your personal application or admissions process in any way? If so, how?
Yes! The pandemic affected my time management skills. I had a heavier workload while working on applications and it was a struggle to balance both. I really had to learn how to prioritize self-care to ensure I was in the right headspace to craft the best application possible.

What is one thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
Despite coming from a business background, I was anxious about the core curriculum at Tuck. It is challenging, but I feel even more confident in my abilities after surviving summer term.

What is one thing you are most excited about in your first year?
I’m excited to build even more connections! There are so many wonderful perspectives in my class that I still haven’t gotten to know.

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.