Harvard | Ms. Lucky Charm
GMAT 690, GPA 3.2
Tuck | Ms. Green Biz
GRE 326, GPA 3.15
Harvard | Ms. URM
GRE 325, GPA 3.6
Chicago Booth | Mr. Stay Involved
GMAT 730, GPA 3.4
McCombs School of Business | Ms. Second Chances
GRE 310, GPA 2.5
Stanford GSB | Mr. Entrepreneurial Bassist
GMAT 740, GPA 3.61
Rice Jones | Mr. Back To School
GRE 315, GPA 3.0
Cornell Johnson | Mr. IT To IB
GMAT 660, GPA 3.60
Kellogg | Mr. Green Business
GMAT 680, GPA 3.33; 3.9 for Masters
Duke Fuqua | Ms. Account Executive
GMAT 560, GPA 3.3
NYU Stern | Mr. Military Officer
GRE In Progress, GPA 2.88
Kellogg | Mr. Real Estate Finance
GMAT 710, GPA 3.0
Kellogg | Mr. Finance To Education
GMAT 730, GPA 3.4
Stanford GSB | Ms. Artistic Engineer
GMAT 730, GPA 9.49/10
Emory Goizueta | Mr. Multimedia
GRE 308, GPA 3.4
UCLA Anderson | Mr. Commercial Banker
GMAT 700, GPA 3.3
IU Kelley | Mr. Construction Manager
GRE 680, GPA 3.02
Harvard | Mr. Healthcare Fanatic
GMAT 770, GPA 3.46
Harvard | Mr. Sovereign Wealth Fund
GMAT 730, GPA 3.55
Harvard | Mr. Smart Operations
GMAT 760, GPA 4.0
Darden | Mr. Strategy Manager
GRE 321, GPA 3.5
Ross | Mr. Airline Engineer
GMAT 730, GPA 3.73
Stanford GSB | Mr. Corporate VC Hustler
GMAT 780, GPA 3.17
Wharton | Mr. Marketing Director
GMAT 710, GPA 3.3
Ross | Ms. Healthcare Startup
GRE 321, GPA 3.51
Georgetown McDonough | Ms. Air Force
GMAT 610, GPA 3.8
Stanford GSB | Mr. JD To MBA
GRE 326, GPA 3.01

Meet Yale SOM’s MBA Class of 2018


Ali Bandeali

Yale School of Management

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: I wonder if it’s possible to fully know one’s self…a lifelong work in progress!

Hometown: Bedford, Texas

Fun Fact About Yourself: I spent five minutes ruminating over this question, and noticed the ticking sound of my clock with the slightly asynchronous, fainter ticking sound of my watch, creating a solid “fa-lam” rhythm that many percussionists spend years refining. I found this looping track alluring, since we can (un)intentionally play the role of composer/audience with the possessions we acquire.

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Texas at Austin – Business Administration

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

Microsoft Middle East & Africa (Accra/Johannesburg/Islamabad) – Corporate Social Responsibility Program Manager

Microsoft Turkey (Istanbul) – Business Controller

Microsoft Western Europe (Paris) – Business Controller/Finance Rotation Program

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I co-founded a company-wide youth employment and entrepreneurship program directed at young women in Kenya. The bulk of the program was completed in 2015, but questions about what constitutes success are still simmering in my thoughts (can we measure whether improvement in employment prospects in Kenya outweighs a risky corporate cycle of global justice appropriation?). In some ways, my biggest career accomplishment was engaging in new experiences within corporate social responsibility and confronting unexplored questions.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants? What if I’m an engineer with only a 790 GMAT instead of 800 – do I have a shot at xxx school?

As future connoisseurs of bar graphs and humans who will Excel at statistical benchmarking – we analytical folks can be quite methodical about the data points in our application package. It’s tempting to compare our stats with other applicants on clearadmit.com. It’s tempting to write 20 versions of the essay. But, the most important part — how we get read as flawed, but aspiring homo sapiens — can’t be (completely) manufactured or compared with other data points. If the essays and interviews are approached as a time to reflect on our experiences rather than a contrived story one has to spend months revising, I think the “rawness” that will shine through in the application process will trump any hilariously unimportant point differentials we may obsess about.

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

  1. The foliage on campus is beautiful. I’m returning to the U.S. from Istanbul and missed the green(ery) and open atmosphere.
  2. Lately, it’s been easy to be barraged with news of injustices and feel compelled to act right away. At the same time, it can be challenging to sit on thoughts and have a nuanced understanding of global issues. My aspiration while applying was to have the time and space to critically think. This aspiration may seem contradictory to the quick execution and commercial mentality in a business environment (hoarding knowledge for some commercial value, gaining experiences to “market” oneself, etc.), but it’s clear that Yale supports a breadth of management pursuits. During my visit, I sensed a genuine encouragement to question (a faculty member entertained an ethical question about how SOM or anyone can be so sure they know what is “good” for society) and to be creative with academic endeavors (around half of the classes can be taken outside of SOM).
  3. Marimba and vibraphone access at the music school.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life? At this point, it’d be a delight to serve as a TA during year 2. A dream would be to blur the lines between work and play, without feeling entitled.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program?  Nothing. Or – that they couldn’t tell whether I was working or playing.