Meet The Top First-Year MBAs From India

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Nayandeep Mahanta

Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: A meticulous planner who believes in consistently reaching for bigger and better goals.

Hometown: Guwahati, India

Fun Fact About Yourself: I have only been in the United States for nine years but I have already been to 41 states. I love to travel!

Undergraduate School and Major:

BE: Saradar Vallabhbhai National Institute of Technology, Surat, India; Major: Mechanical Engineering.

MS: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio; Major: Mechanical Engineering

PhD: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio; Major: Mechanical Engineering

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation: In reverse chronological order

Senior R&D Engineer, Intel Corporation, Chandler, Arizona

Graduate Research Assistant, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio

Graduate Intern, PolyOne Corporation, Avon Lake, Ohio

Software Engineer, Infosys Limited, Bangalore, India

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far:Looking back at my career, I realize that I have been able to achieve every goal I had set for myself and I consider that to be the biggest accomplishment so far. For example, when I was in high school I dreamed about an engineering career. As a junior in college, I knew I wanted to gain mastery over my field of interest and I decided to pursue a PhD. Continuing the trend, as a PhD student I wanted to be in applied research and I wanted to work for Intel. Now, I have made my way into an MBA program and I hope to be able to put my best effort forward towards utilizing the MBA for achieving my current and future goals thereby maintaining the track record.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants? I believe that every individual has their own way of doing things. So, knowing very well what worked for me may not work for you. For what it is worth, I would encourage you to spend a good amount of time to reflect on what you hope to achieve with an MBA. I think it is very important to be true to yourself when writing your essays and approaching the interviews. I also think having an open discussion about your career plans with your recommenders is very valuable as it may help them highlight certain skills and experiences when they endorse you.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA? When looking at MBA programs, I wanted to see myself in a school which allowed me to form strong and lasting relationships with my classmates. In addition, I was also on the lookout for a program that gave me as much hands-on experience as possible to facilitate my desired transition from Mechanical Engineering to Equity Research. Finally, I wanted a program which considers my unconventional background an asset to the incoming MBA class. The Carlson School of Management, which features a small class size and offers a unique experiential learning opportunity through the enterprise programs appeared to be the clear frontrunner. My experience interacting with the current students and the admissions staff corroborated my thesis and I was certain it was the best program for me.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life? Throughout my engineering career, I have been involved in many research projects to look at technologies that can shape the future. I have also noticed the significant investments many of these technologies demand and over time I have developed an interest in building an acumen that combines the traits of a researcher as well as an investor. Either as part of a venture capital firm or as a member of a corporate mergers and acquisitions team, it would be a rewarding experience to identify opportunities that provide the best possible returns for the investors while facilitating sustainable technologies that can change the world.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program? An MBA program, in my opinion, should provide a forum where students share their unique experiences, engage in intellectually stimulating discussions, and challenge one another to grow both personally and professionally while forming life-long friendships. It would thus be very satisfying to hear my classmates share stories of how we grew together and the helping hand I lent at times during their pursuit towards professional excellence.

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    A large fraction of the Indian students who study at B-schools in India, join the programs just after completing their undergrad education. These Indian MBA programs are most likely like the pre-experience Masters in Management degrees offered at places outside India. In the US or Europe, MBA programs expect candidates to acquire a number of years of experience. So going for an MBA in the US, after completing an MBA from India and working a few years in industry does not fall out of place. Moreover, I think that B-schools in the US/ Europe are able to provide the students with more international/ global exposures. Last thing is, the Indian schools lack overall recognition outside of India. The US/EU schools and their parent universities are world renowned.

  • Rajeev

    Wonder why there are folks who already have an MBA and still going to US to get another one!