2016 MBAs To Watch: Iris Zielske, MIT (Sloan)

Iris Zielske-MIT-PoetsAndQuants_MBAsToWatch2016

Iris Zielske

MIT Sloan School of Management

Age: 31

Hometown: Boca Raton, FL

Undergraduate School and Degree: University of Florida, BS Industrial & Systems Engineering and BA Linguistics

Where did you work before enrolling in business school? Tribridge, Consultant

Where did you intern during the summer of 2015? Amgen, Thousand Oaks, CA

Where will you be working after graduation? One Acre Fund, Global Operations Associate

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:

MIT Public Service Center Fellowship and project with Hiinga in Uganda

Independent study project with Gradian Health Systems looking at their after-sales service and spare parts strategy for their anaesthesia equipment in East Africa

Hugh Hampton Young Memorial Fellowship Recipient

Vice President of Sloan Christian Fellowship

Organizing Committee for Believers in Business Conference

MIT IDEAS Global Challenge Reviewer

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? I am most proud of building a team of students to work with Gradian Health Systems to evaluate their after-sales service and spare parts strategy in East Africa. I believe in Gradian’s product and their mission to improve access to safe surgery. We got to visit hospitals in Tanzania and Uganda and hear about the impact of Gradian’s product and understand the needs of their users. We provided valuable feedback and recommendations to Gradian that will help them provide even better service to the hospitals that use their machines.

Who is your favorite professor? Anjali Sastry, because of the inspirational work she does in the field of Global Health. Her Business Model Innovation: Global Health in Frontier Markets was one of my favorite courses at Sloan and it was great to work with her on a independent study project as well.

Favorite MBA Courses? Dilemmas in Founding New Ventures

Why did you choose this business school? I chose MIT Sloan because of the Leaders for Global Operations program and the opportunity to get both an MBA and a master’s of science in engineering in two years from MIT.

What was the hardest part of business school? Choosing which of the vast amount of opportunities and activities to pursue and trying to reserve time for reflection while being so busy.

What’s your best advice to an applicant to your school? Be able to articulate what you will bring to the Sloan community that is unique and how you want to use what you will get out of an MBA to improve the world. Be ready to look for opportunities to engage across the MIT community, beyond Sloan.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I thank God for everything He has given me, the community of friends and supporters He has placed around me and the strength He has provided to make it through difficult times along the way.

Fun fact about yourself: I speak conversational Swahili.

Favorite book: Living Mission by Scott Bessenecker

Favorite television show: “Downton Abbey”

Favorite vacation spot: Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Hobbies? Traveling, learning languages, hiking

What made Iris such an invaluable addition to the class of 2016?

“Iris joined MIT to expand her interest in development issues in Africa. She completed the Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) program, earning a degree in Systems Engineering and an MBA at the same time. At MIT Sloan, Iris developed an independent study project under the supervision of Professor Anjali Sastry and in conjunction with Gradian Health Systems. The project developed a sustainable strategy for eliminating and reducing equipment downtime of Gradian’s Universal Anesthesia Machine. Iris was awarded the Hugh Hampton Memorial Fund Fellowship, an MIT-wide annual award for students completing research that directly benefit the world and society. She was also a MasterCard Foundation Fellow through the MIT Legatum center. During her last months at MIT, she spent a month in Uganda working with Hilinga, an organization that provides loans to savings and credit cooperatives across the country.

“For her bachelor’s degree, Iris double majored in Industrial Engineering and Linguistics (emphasizing African Studies) at the University of Florida, where she also received NSF research funding for another project in Tanzania. Before coming to MIT Sloan for her MBA, she worked at Kujali International in Tanzania and then as a consultant at Tribridge Inc., in Washington D.C. After she graduates from MIT, Iris plans to join the global operations team of One Acre Fund. She will be based in Kampala and will work with the organization’s operations throughout the region.”

Jolene Monson
Director of Marketing and Admissions
Leaders for Global Operations
MIT

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