Meet The Cambridge MBA Class of 2016

Jade Chislett

Jade Chislett 

Cambridge Judge Business School, University of Cambridge

Hometown: Toronto, Ontario (Canada)

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Western Ontario

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

Sales Manager, Google (8 months)

Enterprise Account Executive, Google (2 years)

National Account Manager, Xerox (2 years)

Small Business Account Manager, Xerox (1.5 years)

Recalling your own experience, what advice do you have for applicants who are preparing for either the GMAT or the GRE? Make sure not to abandon your strengths. For example, if you discover you are stronger on the verbal portion of the exam, do not shift all of your time to the quantitative section. Understand that if you naturally excel in one area, it is likely that you will pick up the practical learnings of that subject faster and increase your score with less effort. It will also train your mind to make the switch between subjects as you will need to do in the exam.

Based on your own selection process, what advice do you have for applicants who are trying to draw up a list of target schools to which to apply? The MBA application process is demanding and highly competitive.  My first piece of advice would be to ensure your short list exceeds no more than three schools. Anymore than this and applications will risk coming across as disingenuous.  Keep the quality high.

Secondly, think about choosing your MBA as a partnership. Yes, you want the best – this is a given – but I sense that the students who benefit the most from MBA’s are the ones who are able to contribute to the program as much as they take from it. That means being honest with yourself about where you will be the best fit.

What advice do you have for applicants in actually applying to a school, writing essays, doing admission interviews, and getting recommenders to write letters on your behalf?  Your applications need to be personal and genuine. Applicants need to take some time to crystallize what value they can bring to the program and likewise why they have decided to apply to this program over the thousands of others. In communicating this, be formal but take some liberties to ensure that your application has personality and is enjoyable to read.

I found a few tactics especially helpful when working with sponsors to write recommendation letters. Firstly, make sure to set firm deadlines and follow-up regularly with your sponsor. Create your own dates that give you at least a week’s buffer to pull everything together before submission. Secondly, sit down with the sponsor beforehand and share your application and be open about your story and vision. This will help your sponsor build continuity into the overall application.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA? I selected Judge Business School at the University of Cambridge because of the following 3 reasons:

Diversity: Many MBA programs tout a diverse class made up of different professional and cultural backgrounds, but when I looked at the data there was nowhere that this was more true than at Judge. Approximately 70% of the class comes from outside of the UK. Having worked predominantly with North Americans in North America, this was important to me as I had an appetite to expand my perspectives and be a part of a truly global alumni network.

Academic Rigor: Not surprising, Judge has put great effort to ensure that the program meets the world renowned academic benchmark that Cambridge has become known for. The school’s reputation has also allowed them to source some of the most renowned business leaders, subject matter experts, and professors to lead the classes.

Format: I was always attracted to a 12-month program but nervous that I would be missing out on part of the MBA experience. That was until I learned more about how Judge had carefully architected the program so that you did not have to compromise. For instance there are two consulting projects, both of which involve working in teams to solve real business challenges – for a tech-startup and global organization. As well, the curriculum includes a summer internship program that was a requisite for me given that I am interested in exploring new career paths.

What would you ultimately like to achieve before you graduate? At Google and Xerox, I had the great opportunity to manage a portfolio of accounts as though it were my very own business.  I want to take this entrepreneurial passion to the next level with a role that will allow me to more directly affect the strategy of an organization or department. This year I want to learn how I can craft a business strategy and measure its success. Ultimately I want to achieve a framework for tackling business problems and coming up with solutions at a macro level.

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.