Meet Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA Class of 2018


Erica Toews

Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: Vegetarian from California who owns too much tie-dye

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA

Fun Fact About Yourself: From childhood to age 18, I was barefoot whenever I wasn’t in school.

Undergraduate School and Major: Stanford University, English with a Creative Writing Emphasis

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

Legal Assistant on the patents team at Google

Fulbright English Teacher in Malaysia

Product Manager at an education technology startup called Zearn

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: At Zearn, I managed the creation of free online math lessons for elementary school students. My greatest success has been figuring out how to use technology to equalize access to high quality math content. I learned how to use Adobe Illustrator so I could work with designers to create on-screen animations that help students visualize problems. I learned basic JavaScript so I could work with developers to build interactions that provide students with feedback at the point of misunderstanding. I identified the need for, and helped devise and execute, user tests to measure how students absorb information and interact with digital manipulatives.

The most important metric of success has been proof that Zearn has a positive impact in the classroom. The 2014-15 academic year was our Beta year with about 10,000 students in 500 classrooms. Students who completed more than 100 Zearn lessons gained more than one year of math understanding. This is particularly exciting given that most children in America do not gain one year of math learning after one year of schooling.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants? Even if you don’t have a traditional business background, you may still have a lot to offer in a business school setting, so be confident. For whichever schools you consider attending, visit the campuses and talk to as many alumni as possible.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA? I spoke with several Tuck graduates during the application process, and I couldn’t believe how many people shared their experiences with me. Their enthusiasm for the program and eagerness to help in any way possible made me realize that Tuck is a special place. They emphasized the inclusive environment at Tuck, where classmates learn from and support one another, and that’s the type of atmosphere in which I thrive.

I love spending time outside. When my partner and I realized the Appalachian Trail goes through Hanover, we decided to walk from our apartment in Brooklyn to Tuck. We’ve met many kindred spirits here who share our love of nature.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life? I want to launch my own startup focused on education. I envision partnering with urban school districts to develop the widespread use of technology in the classroom and eventually bringing rigorous and engaging technology into every classroom in the world.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program?   I’m generous with my time and energy, trustworthy, and self-aware. I generate interesting ideas while supporting and encouraging others in their efforts to implement their own ideas.

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