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Real Humans of MBA Students: Washington University Olin MBA Class of 2023

washington olin mba class 2023

washington olin mba class 2023Ishmael Kodjoe, Washington University Olin MBA Class of 2023 

Age: 29
Hometown: Accra, Ghana
Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Ghana (B.A. Economics and Statistics)
Pre-MBA Work Experience (years, industry): 3.5 years – Insurance / Risk Management

Why did you make the decision to attend business school? Why now?
I wanted to expand my scope into the part of the corporate world with a global impact. I believe I had a good exposure to the technical aspect of a firm’s operational activities and wanted exposure to the management side.

Why did you choose Washington Olin? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
The small class size at Olin is excellent for building lasting relationships with colleagues. The focus on global business education exposes you to the dynamics of international business. Factors that figured prominently – class size, financial aid and faculty.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the Class of 2023?
In class discussions and group projects, I have shared my international business and cultural experiences, which have added to the wealth of diverse perspectives we have had to consider. 

Tell us a fun fact that didn’t get included on your application:
I ran a live soccer commentary on a cup final match.

Post-MBA career interests:
Strategy Consulting

Advice for Current Prospective Applicants:
The application committee takes a holistic view of your application. Carefully think through who you are and the value you bring, and communicate them accordingly. You are more than your test scores.

–What is one thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
Attending info sessions. You learn about the program better and decide if it’s a good fit for you.

–What is one thing you would change or do differently?
I started the process late and almost got caught by the deadline. Whichever round you decide to apply, start early!

–What is one part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
I loved every aspect of the process.

What is your initial impression of the Washington Olin students/culture/community?
What an awesome community. There is a great sense of belonging, collaboration, and respect for everyone- students, faculty, and staff.

What is one thing you have learned about Washington Olin that has surprised you?
The career resources – personalized coaching, alum sessions, industry panels, external resource personnel, etc. I expected that there would be some assistance, but it’s much more extensive. The whole community wants you to succeed. 

Has the COVID-19 pandemic affected your personal application or admissions process in any way? If so, how?
Admit weekend would have been in-person, but it was virtual this time. I missed an excellent opportunity to tour the school before enrolling, but it doesn’t matter anymore – I am here!

What is one thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
Whether the new variants of COVID-19 will threaten the personal nature of the classes. 

What is one thing you are most excited about in your first year
Meeting new people and building new relationships.

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

Schools: Washington U. / Olin

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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