University of Michigan, Ross School of Business
Hometown: Oak Brook, IL
Undergraduate School and Degree: B.B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison
Where did you work before enrolling in business school? Northern Trust Company, Portfolio Manager
Where did you intern during the summer of 2015? Finance Manager Intern at Microsoft, Seattle/Redmond, WA
Where will you be working after graduation? United Airlines, Senior Financial Analyst
Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School: Co-president of MBW Allies (club promoting the value of gender equity); Co-vice president of Corporate Finance; MBA1 Career Peer Coach; admissions interviewer; and head of Media Committee for Admitted Students Weekend. I am also a candidate for graduation with high distinction.
Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? Last year for my Multidisciplinary Action Project (student consulting work, commonly known as MAP), our team was assigned to assist the National Network of Depression Centers. Having come from a family working in mental health, this was a very important topic that I was excited to approach from the business perspective. After conducting over 70 interviews, our seven-week project resulted in actionable results bridging the gap between academia and mental health in the workplace. This short project has inspired me to continue contributing to broader mental health issues after graduation.
What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? After I received my CFA charter, I was selected to be part of a small team tasked with launching a new wealth segment initiative specifically targeting $100,000,000 clients. I am proud of what we accomplished with developing the concept into a pilot group. Our efforts laid the groundwork that eventually led to a national practice.
Who is your favorite professor? I was fortunate to have Professor Gautam Kaul in the Fast Track Finance program as Ross. Given my prior finance background, I wasn’t sure how much new information I would gain from additional finance courses. However, his love for finance was very contagious, as he would constantly engage students with humor and thought-provoking discussions. There is a mutual respect between Kaul and his students and we feel that we will always have his support outside of the classroom and after graduation. I highly recommend to anyone to take his online course, as a few hundred thousand people have all across the world.
Favorite MBA Courses? Financial Communication and Investor Relations, Marketing Engineering, and Business Leadership in Changing Times
Why did you choose this business school? After attending the University of Wisconsin for my undergraduate degree, I felt very comfortable and at home when I first arrived in Ann Arbor. I feel each business school has a personality, and the friendly and collaborative culture at Ross helped distinguish it from other schools. Finally, since I was planning on being a career-switcher, the diversity in companies that recruit at Ross was also an important requirement for me.
What did you enjoy most about business school? The incredible friends I have made at Ross have contributed to my learning beyond the classroom. Ross and the broader Michigan network has a very diverse reach in every industry and field imaginable. I have enjoyed getting to know my classmates on group projects, the Ross Leadership Initiative, club events, attending Michigan football games, performing Follies skits, and traveling the world together through Mtreks. I have been truly inspired by the accomplishments of my fellow classmates, and I can’t wait for more adventures together here and abroad.
What is the biggest lesson you gained from business school? The biggest takeaway from Ross has been a much better understanding of my leadership style. I also feel I am better equipped to be an impactful manager or a team member thanks to my involvement with MBW Allies. This two-year old Gender Equity group focuses on identifying inherit biases both men and women have in the workplace as well as tools to overcome some of these obstacles. Being more aware of these biases, I have learned the values of having diversity on teams.
What was the most surprising thing about business school? I was surprised by the opportunities available to me as a business student from a top school. Companies from every industry would reach out to me within the first few weeks at Ross. I had never imagined I would be able to work for a phenomenal company like Microsoft with no prior tech experience.
What was the hardest part of business school? Balancing the various aspects of business school, whether it was academics, clubs, social, and career, can be challenging. Recruiting is especially stressful as it peaks at different times for different people. Having a good understanding of priorities helps with navigating a busy MBA calendar.
What’s your best advice to an applicant to your school? Be as genuine as you can on your application and demonstrate your passion.
“I knew I wanted to go to business school when… I noticed a majority of my professional mentors had obtained their MBAs. I was also excited about transitioning to a completely different industry outside of financial services.”
“If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be… exploring different opportunities within financial services.”
Which executive or entrepreneur do you most admire? Satya Nadella. With a company as large as Microsoft, it is remarkable how he was able to change the culture of the company in a short amount of time. I was able to see first-hand how even tenured employees are excited and inspired by the new direction of the company.
Manoj Bhargava, local entrepreneur and founder of 5 Hour Energy, has truly done something remarkable with his tremendous success. His inspiring Billions in Change movement looks to tackle some of the most serious global issues.
What are your long-term professional goals? I hope to gain a wide range of experiences within my industry, and eventually move up to a management role. Being a CFO of a division or a company has been my goal since high school.
Who would you most want to thank for your success? Throughout my life, my parents have always been supportive of any field I wanted to pursue, allowing for a tremendous amount of freedom as well as guidance along the way. I am also thankful for having very successful and driven childhood friends who pushed me out of my comfort zone throughout my life.
Fun fact about yourself: I have been known to do a good “movie trailer voice,” which has come in handy with some of the Ross variety shows.
Favorite book: Devil in the White City by Erik Larson
Favorite movie: Back to the Future
Favorite musical performer: Dispatch
Favorite television show: “Game of Thrones”
Favorite vacation spot: Rome, Italy
Hobbies? Badger and Wolverine sports, Chicago sports, running races, trying new restaurants, traveling, and a newfound interest at business school in video editing
What made Tej such an invaluable addition to the class of 2016?
“Tej has a deep commitment to diversity, helping others, and contributing to the community. He was one of the leaders for Michigan Business Women (MBW) Allies, a group of men working with MBW, to help further the equity of women in the workplace. He worked in collaboration with MBW and other organizations to bring workshops such as Practical Preventative Measures, Uncovering Uncommon Truths and Sharing Them, and the Intel Diversity Case Competition. In addition, Tej was active in the Finance Club and Follies. It is impressive to me his array of talents and abilities, from finance to video editing. Tej is also a pleasure to be around. He has a great sense of humor, a deep sense of empathy, and a positive attitude. His ability to build consensus and to listen while everyone else is talking has made him a wonderful addition to the Ross community.”
Full-Time MBA Program
University of Michigan, Ross School of Business
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