Meet Dartmouth Tuck’s MBA Class Of 2019

Tayo Odusanya 

Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth 

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: Born Nigerian, naturalized American; mom to a son who fuels my drive yet keeps me grounded.

Hometown: Atlanta, GA

Fun Fact About Yourself: I’d rather watch the movie previews in theater than the actual movie. It’s like watching all the good parts in under a minute.

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Virginia: Economics (Bachelor); Special Education (Masters), and School Administration (Education Specialist)

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation: My career has solely been in education since graduation. I worked for Charlottesville City Schools in Virginia both as a special education teacher and school administrator. I moved to Georgia and worked in Gwinnett County Public Schools as a special education teacher, and most recently taught middle school math in Fulton County Public Schools.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far:  A remarkable accomplishment to end my last year in the classroom was generating a 147% increase in the number of my students scoring at the highest level on state assessments. More poignant was receiving beautiful notes and messages from my middle schoolers describing how my class strengthened their math sense and increased their self-confidence.

Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants? Your essays are going to be one of the most time-consuming parts of the application process, but also a valuable opportunity for your voice to come through. More than anything, it allowed me to do some deep introspection that helped refine and effectively articulate my story.

Really take the time to be reflective before putting pen to paper. I would jot down random thoughts as they came to me throughout my day and build upon them in multiple edits. Be your whole authentic self as you create this narrative. I also found talking to Tuckies, both current students and alumni, to be helpful in terms of understanding the Tuck culture and how I would fit within it. If possible, do a school visit prior to choosing.

Lastly, lean in on others to help provide honest feedback. I was lucky to have had a good friend read all my school essays who was able to let me know when I was starting to sound generic and losing my authentic voice. I also had Tuckies who were all so gracious in providing helpful feedback.

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?  The one big consideration was where I felt I could stretch myself the most and leave much better rounded than I came in, while leaving a strong footprint. This meant considering living in rustic Hanover for two years; being a part of a small class where I can’t hide as easily; tackling a strong core curriculum; exploring global opportunities (a required part of the curriculum); and relying on fellow students, faculty and alumni who have consistently lived up to the reputation of being supportive and helpful.

What would success look like to you after your first year of business school?  Conquering fall term with my wits still intact. More seriously, my goal is to finish the first year having done one or two activities outside my comfort zone—lead an initiative, give skiing another go, or stretch myself on a first year project in an unfamiliar country.

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