Katie (Katherine) Hill
Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth
Describe yourself in 15 words or less: Adventure seeker, Kindle owner, and aspiring Italian speaker striving to make a global impact.
Hometown: Damascus, MD
Fun Fact About Yourself: After seeing a snow leopard for the first time in the Central Park Zoo in 2010, I committed to someday seeing one in its natural habitat. Last February I made that dream a reality when I spent two weeks camping at 4000m in the Indian Himalayas. There I saw two snow leopards.
Undergraduate School and Major: Pennsylvania State University, Economics
Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation:
International Executive Service Corps:
- Program Associate (Washington, DC) 2014-2015
- Implementation Administrator (Afghanistan) 2015
- Grants Implementation Manager (Afghanistan) 2016-2017
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: During my last short-term assignment in Kabul, I began what would eventually become my full-time job. This was to overhaul our project’s international shipping and logistics procedures. We sourced heavy machinery and equipment from around the world for partner businesses based throughout Afghanistan. As customs and transit into Afghanistan are highly regulated, it often took more than 6 months to deliver a piece of equipment. In collaboration with local staff, interpreters, freight forwarders, and my leadership team, I managed to enact new policies that allowed for delivery in less than 4 months. It was genuinely remarkable to me that with so many different stakeholders, we were still able to find a solution that saved our project months of backlog and hundreds of thousands of dollars.
Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants? My favorite part of the business school admissions process was the interview. I’d encourage every applicant to use the interview to put your best foot forward in possibly the only personal interaction you have with admissions and to gather more information on each school. The best advice I can give in this regard is:
- Prepare for your interviews ahead of time in whatever way(s) available to you—browse the school’s website and blog, visit campus, talk to current students and alumni, and attend school-sponsored events online and/or in your city. Doing the ground work really helped boost my confidence in the interview room.
- Dig deeper into what qualities go into your personal decision matrix for selecting an MBA program and address how these characteristics are valued at each school when your interviewer inevitably asks, “So, what questions do you have for me?” You may be surprised at the candor of your interviewer and learn something that completely shifts your perspective of a school.
- Keep in mind that once you’ve narrowed down your choices to a few outstanding programs, fit becomes increasingly important when making such a huge investment into yourself. Conveying your authentic personality in the interview is a great way to gauge how you may (or may not) see yourself fitting into that school’s community.
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? Having a nontraditional background and being a hopeful career switcher, it was important to me to find a school where I felt welcomed into the community and empowered to try new things, not judged for the path I chose pre-MBA. I found all that and more at Tuck. In every interaction with current students, other T19s, and faculty and staff, my experience was valued as an addition to the incoming class, not a burden for career placement statistics. Tuck’s location, size, and focus on the full-time MBA encourage an immersive and inclusive experience but it’s really the people of Tuck that come together to make it a reality. After several visits to Hanover, I knew I would thrive in Tuck’s supportive and close-knit community.
What would success look like to you after your first year of business school? Success to me is balancing personal goals with professional goals and pursuing relationships and a career in support of both. After my first year at Tuck, this ideally manifests in an internship with a team-based environment where I can really challenge myself intellectually, connect with like-minded people, and learn how I can best serve those around me.