INSEAD | Ms. Social Business
GMAT 750, GPA 4.0
Stanford GSB | Mr. Healthcare AI
GRE 366, GPA 3.91
Harvard | Ms. Risk-Taker
GRE 310 (to retake), GPA 3 (recalculated)
HEC Paris | Ms. Freelancer
GMAT 710, GPA 5.3
Harvard | Mr. Hedge Funder
GMAT 790, GPA 3.82
Chicago Booth | Mr. Non-Profit Latino
GMAT 710, GPA 3.06
Harvard | Mr. Fresh Perspective
GRE 318, GPA 3.0
USC Marshall | Mr. Supply Chain Guru
GMAT GMAT Waiver, GPA 2.6
Kellogg | Mr. Danish Raised, US Based
GMAT 710, GPA 10.6 out of 12
Harvard | Mr. Green Energy Revolution
GMAT 740, GPA 3.4
Harvard | Mr. MPP/MBA
GRE 325, GPA 3.6
Harvard | Ms. Analytical Leader
GMAT 760, GPA 3.9
Stanford GSB | Mr. MBB to PM
GRE 338, GPA 4.0
Stanford GSB | Mr. Technopreneur
GRE 328, GPA 3.2
Berkeley Haas | Mr. Hanging By A Thread
GMAT 710, GPA 3.8
London Business School | Mr. College Dropout
GMAT 690, GPA NA
Harvard | Mr. MBB Latino Engineer
GMAT 710, GPA 3.75
Stanford GSB | Ms. Top Firm Consulting
GMAT 710, GPA 3.7
INSEAD | Mr. Truth
GMAT 670, GPA 3.2
INSEAD | Mr. Powerlifting President
GMAT 750, GPA 8.1/10
Harvard | Mr. Mojo
GMAT 720, GPA 3.3
Ross | Mr. Law To MBA
GRE 321, GPA 3.77
Stanford GSB | Mr. Failed Startup Founder
GMAT 740, GPA 4
Wharton | Mr. African Impact
GMAT 720, GPA 3.8
Harvard | Mr. Sommelier
GMAT 710, GPA 3.62
Wharton | Mr. MBA When Ready
GMAT 700 (expected), GPA 2.1
Kellogg | Mr. AVP Healthcare
GRE 332, GPA 3.3

Meet the Vanderbilt Owen MBA Class of 2018

gaffney-vanderbilt-poetsandquants-classof2018

Sarah Gaffney        

Vanderbilt Owen Graduate School of Management

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: I am passionate about innovative social impact, leading teams, and strategic problem-solving to improve systems.

Hometown: Washington, D.C.

Fun Fact About Yourself:  When I was in the sixth grade, I performed at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center.

Undergraduate School and Major: Vanderbilt University, Human & Organizational Development

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

Viacom (CMT)

Manager, Public Affairs for CMT

Coordinator, Public Affairs for CMT

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: One of the biggest accomplishments in my career so far was working with McGavock High School, the largest public school in Metro Nashville. CMT was among the first business partners to commit to an innovative model of business engagement in schools. I led CMT’s efforts at McGavock and worked extensively with teachers, administrators, and students to develop correlations between our work and the standards taught in classrooms. Over five years, I worked to strengthen teaching and learning and to expand opportunities for students.

As a result, student achievement increased significantly across several key measures and in 2014, President Obama came to McGavock to observe the school’s business engagement. The strategies I implemented resulted in an invitation to join the Ford Next Generation Learning team as a part-time contract consultant, working with school districts across the country to develop similar techniques.

Looking back on your experience, what advice would you give to future business school applicants? I suggest giving significant consideration to the culture and fit of the programs that you are applying to. While programs of study, rankings, and school networks are certainly important, you should consider what type of student the program seems to attract. Ask questions during your campus visits about student collaboration and the type of community that exists. Closely observe the general climate among students both in and out of class. In the end, these will be your lifelong peers and friends; rankings won’t be as much of a factor day-to-day.

What led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA? While I was already familiar with the caliber of Vanderbilt’s academics, I ultimately chose this program because of the culture. I knew from friends who attended Vanderbilt and my campus visit that the school had a warm social dynamic. My instinct was that Vanderbilt Business would be a welcoming, collaborative community where I would feel at home. And I’ve found that my instinct was spot-on; I could not be more certain that I made the right choice in selecting Vanderbilt. Here, I am surrounded by people with unique backgrounds who are driven, social, and don’t take themselves too seriously – just like me.

Tell us about your dream job or dream employer at this point in your life? I am pursuing opportunities in human capital, particularly in organizational transformation and talent service at Deloitte. I am drawn to this work because it very much aligns with my background and passions of change management, working to strategically solve problems and improve organizations’ functions. I believe a company’s greatest resource is its people and that there are many fascinating iterations of this work to pursue.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program? I hope my peers will say that I was a leader who supported and encouraged my classmates at every turn.