Meet INSEAD’s MBA Class Of 2018

Gijs Pelt


Describe yourself in 15 words or less: Fun, outgoing and at the same time ambitious and results-oriented.

Hometown: Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Fun Fact About Yourself: My first full-time job was as a professional sailor for the Dutch national team in the Olympic Laser class. When I was 20 I put my university studies on hold and did not intend to pursue a career in business at all.

Undergraduate School and Major: Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University Rotterdam – BSc International Business Administration & MSc in Finance and Investments

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation: Roland Berger – Senior Consultant

 Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Having been able to combine working hard with having fun and being active. I’ve always found it very important to have fun and practice sports in and outside of my work. During my work at Roland Berger, I’m able to combine all of that, of which I’m quite proud. For example, I go skiing every year with a group of colleagues and participate in the Amstel Gold Race, a cycling race in the South of the Netherlands, with a group of 30 colleagues each year. I’m very fortunate to have had these opportunities and fun colleagues to share those moments and experiences with.

Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants? There are three things that, I think, can help during the business school application process:

  1. Start early with your application. There are always unforeseen circumstances that impact your optimal application process and having ample time allows you to improve the quality of your essays and ability to properly prepare for the GMAT.
  2. Be yourself. During the process. it is easy to think that a certain answer, either in essays or the interviews, is what they want to hear. I personally strongly believe this is not the case. Being authentic and genuine in your answers will be much more powerful.
  3. Have fun in the process. The application process requires a lot of work and can be daunting at times. Having fun in the process helps your motivation to keep going. For example, I enjoyed dusting off my high-school math skills during the GMAT and I really enjoyed learning about the stories and career paths of my interviewers.

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? I only applied at INSEAD, since I genuinely believe it is the best MBA program for me. Being able to study in Singapore and in France with the most international group of students is what clearly sets INSEAD apart and appeals to me.

What would success look like to you after your first year of business school? I would be very happy when I am able to bring home from my MBA at INSEAD a refreshed set of skills and tools, but more importantly a wealth of experiences and perspectives from my fellow students. In addition I sincerely believe in life-long learning and improving yourself. For me the MBA would be a success if I’m able to achieve the above and in the meantime have a great year full of fun and new experiences.   

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