Meet Vanderbilt Owen’s MBA Class of 2019

Travis Bouchard 

Vanderbilt University, Owen Graduate School of Management 

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: I continually seek ways to improve myself and help others do the same for themselves.

Hometown: Detroit, MI, USA

Fun Fact About Yourself:  I have already surpassed my self-imposed “30-by-30” goal, which was to travel to—and most importantly immerse myself in—the culture of 30 different countries before I turn 30.

Undergraduate School and Major: Michigan State University, Psychology and Communications

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:  

Arc Worldwide – Senior Account Executive

Arc Worldwide – Account Executive

Meredith Xcelerated Marketing – Associate Project Manager

Gail & Rice Productions – Product Specialist

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: P&G asked my shopper marketing firm to help with a limited-distribution launch for a new eco-friendly Tide product at retail. I led the initiative to work with top retailers in the category, developed a marketing plan that married the retailers’ unique objectives with the product proposition, and sold this plan to P&G. After developing an award-winning marketing campaign and acquiring enough retailer support for the limited-distribution launch, we successfully released the product throughout North America. Moreover, the success of this product launch further solidified P&G’s commitment to sustainability via subsequent new products.

Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants?  Take the GMAT as early as possible so you can spend enough time researching schools. If you put ample time and thought into determining your fit with prospective schools, it will not only inform the schools to which you will choose to apply, but will help you build a much stronger application. Additionally, you will be much more prepared to answer the “why our school” question during your interviews.

What was the key factor that led you to choose this program for your full-time MBA and why was it so important to you? First, I was drawn to the small, yet extremely collaborative, learning environment. Second, I could personalize my own MBA experience through programs such as Project Pyramid (a student-led course that addresses issues of poverty around the globe) or the Wond’ry (the new Vanderbilt innovation and entrepreneurship center).

These key factors were critical because I did not need to compromise one or the other: I could acquire global hands-on experiences through countless courses and projects without losing the small classroom environment.

What would success look like to you after your first year of business school? Having just completed my summer internship with Apple, I would be actively securing a full-time placement with them for the following year. I would be contributing to the booming entrepreneurship community in Nashville through student clubs and networks. Lastly, I plan to assume a Project Pyramid leadership position during my second year using the experience I gained as a first-year participant. In this position, I would help classmates plan their global outreach projects.

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