Meet INSEAD’s MBA Class of 2017


Claudia Kampel


Describe yourself in 15 words or less: MBA-student with a passion for music, outdoor sports, sun, and my best friends!

Hometown: Augsburg, Germany

Fun Fact About Yourself: I am now working for the world’s largest consultancy. But when I was pursuing my first undergraduate degree, I didn’t even know who they were!

Undergraduate School and Major: Musical Performance (Classical Guitarist) and Musical Education (Major: Classical Guitar)

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation: McKinsey&Company – Fellow, Fellow Associate, Fellow Senior Associate

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Looking back, the transition from being a classical guitarist to a career in consulting seems to be my biggest accomplishment.

During my last year as an undergrad, I realized I my original career path might not be the perfect fit for me. Admitting this, even only to myself, was the first big step. I thought a lot about what alternatives there were and which of them seemed most attractive to me. I read a lot about different industries and firms, talked to friends and wrote and refined applications. It took me about half a year, but I finally secured an internship at McKinsey (The firm that since that time has been my employer, and now sponsors my MBA). I think it is most important to keep going and not get demotivated when your original plans don’t work out or when you experience drawbacks during an application process – there always is an alternative and it might turn out to be a much better fit than what you originally wanted to do!

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

  • Discuss the topics and matters you want to mention in your essays with your colleagues, friends and family – often they have a more objective view of what your accomplishments as well as development needs are.
  • When choosing your school, have a close look at the exiting careers of the school’s MBA students and what really differentiates the schools – rather do 2 very specific targeted applications than 10.
  • When preparing for the GMAT, take some online test-exams to get the GMAT feel.

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

  • Most of all, the people! I talked to various alumni as well professors before choosing the school, and I just seemed to click best with the crowd here.
  • INSEAD is the most diverse business school. There are only minorities, and the school simply stands for tolerance and intercultural relationships. I also wanted to build a network in Europe/Asia, rather than in the US.
  • The 1-year program offers great value for money financially.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life?  I am very happy at McKinsey, and I am looking forward to return there after the MBA program.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program? “I am really looking forward to seeing her again shortly!”

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