A little more than two years ago, Sandeep Pahuja was at a low point. He had just been through the all-too-real and sometimes crushing process of applying to an elite MBA program–and he had felt the sting of failure many times over. Yet, on a brilliant sunny day in late May of this year, he found himself standing before classmates at the commencement of UC-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business delivering the student address before classmates, friends and family.
“My greatest fear in life, is to not live up to my potential,” he admitted. “And two year’s ago seemed more so than ever, that I was going to have to settle for a life that I did not want to lead.”
His words could have been about anyone sitting and listening in the northern California outdoor theatre that day.
“Round one, rejection email. Round two, rejection email. Round three, rejection email,” Pahuja said.
But then round four came and so did a call from a “510 area code.” So Pahuja left a decade-long career at Procter & Gamble’s Chicago office to pursue his MBA at Haas. Like countless others, he realized a goal that will take him one step closer to his dreams.
And so we want to celebrate you, members of the Class of 2015 as the last of the MBA commencement ceremonies coming to a close, let’s look back at what you’ve accomplished. You made it through two often grueling years.
You survived B-school and a world that saw marathon bombings, billion-dollar tech acquisitions, and (to the detriment of mankind) “twerking.” You withstood the Polar Vortex, the drought in the western United States, and heavy dumps of snow in the east, even a country that celebrates the antics of Miley Cyrus.
But you didn’t do it alone. As Pahuja so emotionally and eloquently put it in his address, you’ve had family, friends, partners, and each other throughout the process. So, here’s to you and yours, Class of 2015!