2018 Best MBAs: Sankha Ghosh, Ohio State (Fisher)

Sankha Ghosh

Fisher College of Business, The Ohio State University

Dubito, ergo cogito, ergo sum” (“I think, therefore I am.”)

Age: 34

Hometown: Kolkata, West Bengal

Fun fact about yourself: I am an enthusiastic budget traveler. Recently, I managed to organize a two-and-a-half-week trip of Europe for my wife and me with a budget of less than $1000.

Undergraduate School and Degree:

University of Calcutta, Bachelor of Science in Zoology

University of Calcutta, Master of Science in Zoology

The Ohio State University, Doctor of Philosophy in Molecular Biology

Where did you work before enrolling in business school?

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center (OSU CCC), Research Associate

Where did you intern during the summer of 2017?

ReHeva Botanicals, Columbus, OH

The Ohio Minority Supplier Development Council (OMSDC), Columbus, OH

Where will you be working after graduation?

McKinsey & Company, Associate

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:

  • Vice President: Fisher Healthcare Association
  • Vice President: Fisher Indian Students Association
  • Case Coach
  • Scotts Miracle-Gro Marketing Consulting Project 2017 Winning Team
  • Best presentation – Fisher MBA Case Competition 2017
  • Best Q&A and runner-up presentation – P&G MBA Case Competition 2016

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school?

I was voted by my peers to win the ‘From Ramen to Riches’ award that is presented in recognition of the student ‘most likely to be a billionaire entrepreneur.’ It was an extremely gratifying experience for me to know that my peers have that much faith in me.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? Before I joined Fisher, I was working as a research associate in the Genetically Engineered Mouse Modeling Shared Resource in the OSU CCC. I was tasked with redesigning their CRISPR as a service offering. The new biotechnology infrastructures that I was able to establish resulted in 30% reduction of cost and 50% reduction in lead time. It enabled the facility with limited financial means to extend more competitive service offering than similar services provided by large pharmaceutical companies. This experience was specifically memorable to me because it corroborated my long-held belief that challenging the validity of every assumptions and a willingness to think outside the box can provide a competitive edge to every David against any Goliath.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? Professor Jay Dial who taught us Strategy and INTOPIA (a strategy-based simulation course)

What was your favorite MBA Course: Strategy. I come from a unique and non-business background. One of the biggest concerns I had before joining the MBA program was how difficult would it be for me to grasp and assimilate the subtle concepts of business. I learned substantially during the first semester but I was still unable to paint the bigger picture. However, it was during the strategy classes when I finally began to connect the dots. I had more ‘aha’ moments in this class than any other.

Why did you choose this business school? Prior to starting my MBA, I did my PhD from the Ohio State University and also worked here in the capacity of a research associate afterwards. I was truly aware of the quality of education a student receives here as well as the intellectually stimulating environment that this vibrant and diverse campus provides. On a personal level, I had grown to love the city of Columbus. It had literally become my second home. So when I had to select a business school, Fisher was an obvious choice where I could receive a world class education without having to leave home.

 What is your best piece advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? Know yourself. It will help you throughout this challenging yet satisfying MBA experience. If you accurately identify your skill sets and know your goals, it will be that much easier for you to show why are a good fit. Once the program starts, it will also enable you to connect with your peers at a more granular level. As the MBA progresses, you will rediscover yourself. Fisher will empower you to show proficiency in skills you did not even know you had. During this critical juncture, familiarity with your roots will enable you to find the suitable direction for you to grow and evolve.

 What is the biggest myth about your school?

Myth: Fisher only excels at operations management.

My experience: Of course, Fisher has excellent faculty in that field as well as numerous opportunities for students to work on operations based real-life projects. However, as I have come to experience, Fisher offers much more than that. Some of my most enjoyable learning experience were in strategy, marketing, and data analytics classes. The diversity of thought generated and shared between the professors and the students with various unique backgrounds, passion, and skill sets enable each of us to follow any interest.

What was your biggest regret in business school? Not taking advantage of the fact that Fisher allows students to take almost any class offered by the university outside the realm of the business school. Considering the diversity of the classes OSU has to offer, opportunities for learning are practically endless.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? This is a hard question for me to answer. By nature, I tend to find positive characteristics in people I know. Accordingly, I have a considerably long list of peers who I admire for various different reason. It is difficult for me to pick just one of them.

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? Jonas Salk. I eventually want to work with future Jonas Salks to ensure that I provide business strategies so that the society at large can easily access and benefit from their inventions just as millions of people did from the polio vaccine.

If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would beworking on perfecting CRISPR to facilitate the use of this immensely powerful genome editing technology in curing human diseases.”

If you were a dean for a day, what one thing would you change about the MBA experience? I would organize more events that facilitate meaningful interactions between alumni and current students.

What are the top two items on your bucket list?

  • View the ‘pale blue dot’ from outer space
  • Visit all the seven continents

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? As someone who would always be there if they need me

What is your favorite movie about business? The Big Short

What would your theme song be? Where the mind is without fear (Bengali: চিত্ত যেথা ভয়শূন্য,) Rabindranath Tagore

Favorite vacation spot: My hometown Kolkata, India

Hobbies? Learning, traveling, taking pictures

What made Sankha such an invaluable addition to the class of 2018?

“How does a PhD in Molecular Biology mesh with an MBA? If Sankha Ghosh is any indication, the answer is, perfectly. Sankha was voted by his class for a Fisher Follies award, “From Ramen to Riches: Likely to be the next Entrepreneurial Billionaire”. Though it was a fun Follies award, it confirms what his peers and professors have learned about Sankha – he is an extremely down-to-earth, wickedly intelligent, supremely unassuming individual who is loved and respected by everyone. If there’s one flaw I had to pick in Sankha, it’s that he doesn’t quite realize how good he is. Always self-deprecating and humble, he is a pleasant contrast to a typical “know-it-all” MBA student. Sankha is a perfect fit at Fisher and Ohio State – like Fisher College, he too is a best kept secret. It has been a pleasure to see him thrive in the MBA program. I have no doubt that he will accomplish much. McKinsey is only the beginning in what I am sure will be a spectacular career.”

Shashi Matta

Associate Professor of Marketing-Clinical & Faculty Director

Full Time MBA and Working Professional MBA Programs