The Leading Independent
Resource for Top-tier MBA
Home » Blog » Real Humans of MBA Students » Real Humans of the IESE Business School MBA Class of 2025 » Page 5

Real Humans of the IESE Business School MBA Class of 2025

Image for Real Humans of the IESE Business School MBA Class of 2025

iese business school 2025Macarena Arce, IESE Business School MBA Class of 2025

Age: 28
Hometown: Lima, Peru
Undergraduate Institution and Major: University of Arkansas, International Economics and Business major, Finance minor
Pre-MBA Work Experience (role, company, years): Commercial Strategy at Credicorp Capital Asset Management in Lima, Peru, 4 years. Business Development Associate at ISN Software Corporation in Dallas, TX, USA, 1 year.

Why did you make the decision to attend business school? Why now?
I always knew I wanted to do an MBA to continue my professional development and network. Being exposed to new ideas and learning new techniques to sharpen my leadership, managerial and decision-making skills had always called my attention. After asking for feedback at work and with family members, I decided that I had reached a point in my career where an MBA could help me reach the next step towards my career goals.

Why did you choose IESE? What factors figured most prominently into your decision of where to attend?
To be honest I almost went to another school in the US, but there was something about IESE that just could not let me pass the opportunity to study my MBA there. I had attended multiple admission events that were hosted in Lima and virtual ones as well, and throughout my application process I started to like the school even more. Additionally, I have always learned more when I participate in class, so the case method was perfect for me because it allows me to learn in a very collaborative environment with very diverse perspectives. Finally, I liked the class size of 350 students divided into sections of 70 students, since it was a great way to connect with your classmates, create stronger bonds, and learn from professionals with experience from all over the world.

What do you think is your most valuable or differentiating contribution to the IESE Business School Class of 2025?
I enjoy fostering a friendly environment around me. At work I was able to enter, smile at everyone, and feel welcomed and I would like to replicate that at IESE as well. Community is very important to me and I hope I can contribute to the Class of 2025 in a positive way. In terms of academics and adding value to the classroom, I have experience in both US and Latin American markets and have also worked in several industries including Financial Services, Software, Dairy, and Textiles.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that didn’t get included on your application:
I learned all of my 150 students’ names when I was a sailing coach one summer. If you call out “kid” in the Pacific Ocean, they will not turn around.

Post-MBA career interests:
I believe financial literacy is very important. I would like to work in the Product or Marketing division of a global Asset Manager, creating friendly communication channels for our clients. My alternate plan would be to work in a specialized consulting firm, enhancing financial companies’ marketing strategies and customer experience.

Advice for Current Prospective Applicants:
–What is one thing you would absolutely do again as part of your application process?
My original plan was to apply to multiple schools in Round 1. However, the deadlines kept approaching and I did not feel comfortable with my GMAT score and my essays. After talking with several admission officials and alumni, I realized that the best time to apply is when you can showcase the best version of yourself.

I ended up applying in Round 2, which tends to be the most competitive one. Waiting a little bit longer to send my applications paid off because I was able to get into IESE and three more US schools, including Ivy League and M7 ones.

–What is one thing you would change or do differently?
I would have liked to join Forte Launch as a preparation for my application process. When I found out about the program the deadline had already passed but I still joined other events led by the Forte Foundation. I also noticed that being part of Forte was another checkbox that was present in almost every top school application.

–What is one part you would have skipped if you could—and what helped you get through it?
When I was writing my essays, I struggled whenever I needed to start and would look at a blank page for hours. It was a time of a lot of introspection and at times I would start writing and did not like what I had.

So, I started to record myself saying the main messages I wanted to share and then used an app to transcribe my voice memo into text. This gave me a starting point for my essays and allowed me to show “my own voice” whenever I was writing.

What is your initial impression of the IESE students/culture/community?
I am in awe about how diverse and welcoming our class is. I attended the Assessment Day in Sao Paulo, which is a group interview during the application process, and got to meet some of my future classmates before coming to Barcelona. The overall impression I got was how smart everyone was and their willingness to collaborate. After starting classes and meeting people from multiple backgrounds and nationalities I noticed that the collaborative culture was replicated by the first- and second-year students as well.

What is one thing you have learned about IESE Business School that has surprised you?
I knew IESE was very rigorous academically – and it is, but I have also learned that they focus heavily on the development of good human beings that one day are going to lead others. I am happily surprised of how respectful and thoughtful about others the students are and that the school encourages this type of behavior.

What is one thing you are most anxious about in your first year?
Managing time to do everything I want. Sometimes I wish the days had more hours because there are so many extra activities I would like to participate in but I have to manage my time studying, meeting with my team, networking, and being a functioning adult.

What is one thing you are most excited about in your first year?
Overall I am excited about the whole experience of being a student again, strengthening my professional skills, connecting with my classmates from all over the world, and learning from new cultures.

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.