Meet Harvard Business School’s MBA Class Of 2019

Mike Young 

Harvard Business School 

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: Wants to create technologies that improve the world. Also loves deep late-night conversations and dogs.

Hometown: Commack, NY

Fun Fact About Yourself: As a member of the Yale Whiffenpoofs, the oldest collegiate a cappella singing group, I took a year off during college to perform in 40 countries across six continents. One of the highlights of the year was flying to LA to film a cameo appearance on the season four finale of the US TV show Glee. We play a rival singing group competing against the show’s main characters at “Regionals” (spoiler alert: it doesn’t end well for us).

Undergraduate School and Major: Yale University, BA, Political Science

Employers and Job Titles Since Graduation: 

Bain & Company (management consulting)

  • Associate Consultant, 2014-2016
  • Senior Associate Consultant, 2016
  • Consultant, 2017

Facebook

  • Monetization Product Marketing Manager, 2016

Six-month externship during a leave of absence from Bain

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: At Facebook I was part of a team that launched a new tool to help the 70 million businesses that use Facebook Pages find and hire job candidates directly through Facebook. A few weeks after launching, we traveled to Chicago to meet with and learn from early users of the product, and I was blown away by their stories. We met small business owners who had previously struggled to find the right job candidates, but had used our tool to hire more than a dozen new employees. We even met someone who had been unemployed for over a year before successfully finding a new job with our product. It was inspiring to experience first-hand the positive impact that a new technology can have on people’s lives.

Looking back on your experience, what one piece of advice would you give to future business school applicants? For me, the most important and time-consuming aspect of the MBA application process was understanding and articulating my personal “story” – who I am, what my life ambitions are, and how going to business school right now will help me achieve them. Your story is the central theme that ties your entire application together. Ideally, you want the various parts of your application (your essays, resume, interview answers, etc.) to come together to tell a coherent story of who you are.

There’s one more benefit to investing the time up front to craft your story: It will probably teach you something about yourself.  When I started my application, I didn’t have good answers to questions like “What are my long-term career ambitions?” and “What am I hoping to get out of business school?” The act of answering these questions not only strengthened my application, but also helped me to confirm that business school is the right next step for me (something you should probably know before committing the time and money to earn an MBA). I’ll use my answers as guiding principles to determine how I spend my time over the next two years.

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? It’s difficult to come up with just one key factor, so I’ll cheat a little bit and say I chose Harvard because I think it will give me the best opportunity to learn and grow as a person, through a combination of 1) a rigorous academic curriculum that combines breadth and depth and pushes me to think about problems and areas of business that are outside my comfort zone; 2) endless conversations and vigorous debates with new friends, especially those I meet in my 90-person section, facilitated by Harvard’s use of the case method to structure classroom discussion; and 3) the vast pool of resources Harvard provides, including an unmatched global alumni network and more extracurricular and research opportunities than I can count.

What would success look like to you after your first year of business school? One year from now, I hope to have a much deeper understanding of what it takes to run a business and – just as important – of who I am, what makes me tick and what areas of business and management most excite me. My core beliefs will have been thoroughly pressure-tested and perhaps changed because of things I’ve learned in and out of the classroom. I’ll be working at a summer internship that allows me to devote my time to thinking about what the future will look like, and gives me the opportunity to put my ideas into practice in ways that can improve the quality of life for people around the world. And, of course, I hope to have made some new friends along the way.

Related Stories In Our Meet The Class of 2019 Series: 

The Pioneering MBAs In The Class of 2019

Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business

Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business

Vanderbilt University’s Owen School of Management

London Business School

University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business

Notre Dame University Mendoza College of Business

UC-Berkeley’s Haas School of Business

New York University Stern School of Business

University of Texas-Austin McCombs School of Business

University of Michigan Ross School of Business

Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business

MIT Sloan School of Management

University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business

University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Columbia Business School

INSEAD

Yale School of Management

University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business

Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management

UCLA Anderson School of Management

HEC Paris     

Emory University’s Goizueta Business School

Dartmouth College Tuck School of Business

Harvard Business School