Meet Virginia Darden’s MBA Class of 2019

Jingxian Chen 

University of Virginia, Darden School of Business 

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: I am: Chinese, Foodie, Adventurer. I like: Music, Giraffe, Drink wine.

Hometown: Haikou, China

Fun Fact About Yourself: When in junior high, I burped so loud that my friends gave me a nickname called Miss Hippo.

Undergraduate School and Major: Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, International Business

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:

PwC (2013-2015) – Associate Auditor

E&Y (2015-2017) – Associate Transaction Advisor, Senior Transaction Advisor

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Earned myself the chance to be the youngest transaction advisor and a fast promotion three months after I joined E&Y.

Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants?  I benefited a lot from the MBA application process, especially from the process of writing essays. It pushed me to dig deeper in myself and understand myself more.

Here are some tips for essays wiring for future applicants:

  1. Recall every details of your career. Try to summarize the keys to each of your achievements and the reasons for the failures, so you can find out your strengths and weaknesses. You can start by asking yourself a few questions: Have you done a good job in your daily work? How have you done it? Do you have a specific pattern when solving problems? What is this pattern and why?
  2. Go through all your important choices such as why you choose your major in college and why you choose your first job, so that you can understand your motives and what you value the most. Ask yourself: by making this decision, what have you sacrificed and what is it that you try to pursue? And why you want to pursue such things?
  3. Do not overthink whether the story is not fancy enough. As long as you have done a good job in self-reflection, even a small story will tell who you are.
  4. Talk to your close friends and supervisors, or even ask them to read your essays.

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? Close community!

Other than professional considerations, I want the MBA experience so that I could take a step back to prepare myself better for future journey and make some life-long friends. So a close community is what I am looking for.

After some school research and further chat with the alumni, I knew that the Darden is dedicated to create a close community. There are quite a lot of events for students and faculty to build close bonds such as sport meet and various parties. One little detail that really impressed me came at the Shanghai information session held last year. There were so many alumni there to support the event, the number of alumni attended even seemed to exceed the number of prospective students! I can feel the alumni’s gratitude towards Darden. All these show that Darden is a very close community, and that is exactly what I need.

What would success look like to you after your first year of business school? 

  1. Get an internship for my dream job

    2. Make some close friends

    3. Learn more about myself, and be more confident

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