Meet Columbia’s MBA Class of 2018

shuli-hervitz-and-moises-eskinazi-poetsandquants-classof2018

Shuli Hervitz and Moises Eskinazi

 

Columbia Business School

Editor’s Note: Shuli and Moises, are married.

Describe yourself in 15 words or less:

Shuli:  Fun-loving, easy-going, open-minded, consumer-focused marketing strategy professional.

Moises: Software Engineer from Venezuela and aspiring entrepreneur who enjoys cooking and photography.

Hometown:

Shuli: Miami, FL

Moises: Caracas, Venezuela

Fun Fact About Yourself:

Shuli: I love fashion design. I’ve made dresses, gowns, skirts, pants, and just finished sewing a leather jacket.

Moises: I make a mean soy-glazed salmon.

Undergraduate School and Major:

Shuli: Yale University, Anthropology

Moises: Universidad Simon Bolivar, Computer Engineering

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

Shuli: I started at a social media agency, Big Fuel, as an Audience Insights Analyst then moved to the Consulting group at Rosetta, a customer engagement agency, where I rose to the Manager role.

Moises: Soon after moving to NYC I joined a 10-person social media aggregation startup, Pixable, as Lead Backend Engineer. I then moved to Shutterstock, a digital marketplace for stock photography, video, and music where I worked as a Full-Stack Engineer.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far:

Shuli: One key accomplishment was leading the development of a client’s digital ecosystem strategy. For 12 weeks, I managed a 13-person cross-disciplinary team that included the senior leaders across multiple departments. By facilitating collaborative work sessions and interactive workshops, I drove the strategic direction that inspired innovative solutions for our client.

Moises: One of my biggest accomplishments was leading the re-architecture of a subscription billing and payment system, a six-month project that involved two teams of engineers. As my role expanded from individual contributor to project leader, I gained greater responsibilities coordinating the development, data migration, and release. After launch, we were able to create video subscription and loyalty products that helped expand to a new market and increase our customer retention. This project set the precedent for establishing SLAs between teams and marked an important step toward a Service Oriented Architecture.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants?

Shuli: Applying to business school as a couple meant we needed to get organized from the beginning. Since applications were due just a few weeks after our wedding, we were especially focused on managing our time and prioritizing responsibilities throughout the application (and wedding planning) process. In between our GMAT study sessions, we’d take breaks to pick out invitations and curate guest lists. It was nice to go through the application process together, although we each ended up going at our own pace. I was ready to apply by the early deadline, so I submitted my application as soon as I felt confident that it reflected everything I wanted to share with the admissions team. Moises was juggling several other responsibilities and took a few more months before submitting his application. Even though we had intended to apply at the same time, we couldn’t control all of the factors that impacted the process. The biggest takeaway is to realize that it’s okay if your plan changes. Be flexible when new situations come up and adjust your timeline as needed.

Moises: You should feel confident about your application. Don’t rush into submitting if you aren’t ready. You might have to retake the GMAT and spend more time studying than you had originally anticipated. Or, you might have other commitments at work or in your personal life that prevent you from dedicating as much time to your application. These obstacles are normal. It’s okay if your process takes a little longer or shorter than others. Work at your own pace until you feel good about your application.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA?

Shuli: Deciding on a program involved introspection and candid conversations on what each of us wanted. What did we want to get out of business school? What types of jobs did we want to pursue? Where did we want to be? We laid out multiple scenarios and discussed our thoughts on each of them. What if I’m on the East Coast and you’re on the West Coast? What if we’re in the same city but different schools? What if one of us keeps working while the other one goes to school? What about the executive MBA program? After narrowing down the possibilities, I began speaking with current students and alumni to learn more about the different options. I attended several prospective student events, which were extremely helpful ways to experience the schools first-hand. After hearing the enthusiasm from current students and seeing the vast opportunities that would be available to me on campus and in the city, I decided that Columbia Business School was the right place for me.

Moises: After we aligned on our overall criteria, I looked for a program that would allow me to stay connected to the tech scene. Columbia’s location allows me to be close to the companies I want to work at, and provides me with the opportunity to do internships throughout the semester. Given our Latin American backgrounds, finding a school with a diverse and international student body was also a consideration. The Columbia community and opportunities for international experiences made CBS a great choice.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life?

Shuli: I’ve always been fascinated by why people do what they do. I love learning about different cultures and societies and figuring out what makes people tick. My passion for understanding people allowed me to move from an academic background in cultural anthropology to a customer-centric marketing strategy role, where I advised top technology companies like Samsung and Microsoft on how to best engage customers. After my MBA, my goal is to leverage my experience in promoting consumer and business value to drive the strategic decision-making of a technology or retail company.

Moises: I’d like to be a leader in the software industry, creating innovative products that empower users. I’d determine what to build based on the customer’s needs and collaborate with a team of designers, engineers, marketing, and sales to bring the solution to market.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program?

Shuli: I’d like my classmates to see me as a valued member of the CBS community who is committed to the culture on campus, a collaborative team member who they’d like to work with, and a dedicated leader across the organizations I am passionate about.

Moises: I’d like them to say that I’m a good leader who’d make a great partner for starting a company and that I made a difference in the clubs I participate in (Technology Business Group, here I come!).

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