Meet NYU Stern’s MBA Class of 2018


Chris Larsen

New York University, Stern School of Business

Describe yourself in 15 words or less:  A dedicated and driven combat veteran who is not afraid of a challenge.

Hometown: Princeton, NJ – Just moved from Oklahoma City, OK

Fun Fact About Yourself:  I was a competitor in the 2009 Crossfit Team Games in Aromas, CA.

Undergraduate School and Major: United States Military Academy – Operations Research (Applied Mathematics)

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

United States Army – Infantry Officer – Platoon Leader, Company Commander, Operation Officer

Chesapeake Energy – Engineering Technician/Project Coordinator, Sr. Supply Chain Coordinator

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Returning to lead in the Army as an Infantry Company Commander after being wounded in combat and spending two years in and out of the hospital.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants? Overall: Plan, plan, plan. I would also take the time during the planning phase to get a sense of where you want to end up and what different programs are like by tapping into the different affinity groups or other networks at the prospective schools. This is a very cost effective method to start narrowing your search to see where you would fit.

GMAT: If you have been out of school for a while definitely invest in a GMAT prep course – take as many practice tests as you have time for or until you feel comfortable with the test.

Essays: Have someone who doesn’t know you very well read your essays to make sure they convey the message you want them to.

Recommendations: Give your recommenders a packet of information for each school explaining why you want to go to business school and what aspects you would like them to focus on. Give them plenty of time and do NOT write your own recommendations.

Interview: Just as the old adage says “how do you get to Carnegie hall? Practice, practice, practice.” During the interview, I would recommend “being yourself,” but also messaging your strongest qualities and other important aspects of you as a person and a professional.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA? When I evaluated what I wanted to get out of going to business school I focused on three things:

1) building upon my professional network

2) getting a great financial and quant foundation

3) being located in a city with unparalleled opportunity

These three things helped me focus on the ‘fit’ aspect that is always spoken about when people talk about their programs. NYU Stern offers professional networking opportunities that will greatly facilitate my transition into the consulting space as well along with continuing to build on my already northeastern aligned network. Stern is also extremely well-known and respected for its ability to produce financially-minded individuals with the help of its strong connections and proximity to the financial center of the world, Wall Street. Lastly, Stern is located in the heart of New York City. Almost every potential company and career path is represented in the Big Apple, as well as Stern alumni willing to help you along your path to your next career.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life My dream job after school would be to work for one of the large strategy consulting firms working on a global project focused on the crude oil recovery and its effect on our client and the world market. The consulting career path appeals to my desire to be constantly challenged by difficult business problems and to work in a team environment to collaboratively solve them. I am also excited about the opportunity to work across functions and industries that are currently foreign to me to gain a better understanding of the full spectrum of business.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program? That I was a great resource and an even better friend.