Meet Arizona State’s MBA Class Of 2020

Srinija Boppudi

Arizona State University, W. P. Carey School of Business

“A go-getter on the lookout for creative solutions to complex business problems.”

Hometown: Hyderabad, India

Fun Fact About Yourself: A part-time entrepreneur who launched healthy home-cooked meal delivery services for working professionals.

Undergraduate School and Major: JVWU, Jaipur- Bachelor of Technology in Electronics & Communications Engineering.

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: CBRE Inc., Project Marketing Associate.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Along with a full-time job, I led a team of 4 unskilled workers and generated 10% profits within 3 months of launching my food business. Since I was an active end user, I was aware of all the pain points. This helped me establish key delivery metrics and effectively monitor food quality.

What quality best describes the MBA classmates you’ve met so far and why? I am surrounded by high achievers who are humble and grounded. This quality shapes an overall culture of collaborative competition. We are all great team players who believe in growth via collective contribution and knowledge sharing. Such an attitude promotes accelerated learning and enhanced MBA experience, both inside and outside the classroom.

Aside from your classmates, 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 primary reason for pursuing an MBA outside my home country was an aspiration to become a global executive. With that in mind, I wanted an MBA experience that had the maximum potential for personal transformation and professional growth. I was equally adamant on making it to a Forté sponsored school as I am passionate about supporting women in business. This combination of a robust curriculum, collaborative culture, and small class size seemed like the perfect launch pad. The generous scholarship was also a key driver that influenced my decision. Without a debt, I feel powerful and I can pursue my dreams without fear.

What club or activity are you looking most forward to in business school? The MBA Ambassador’s program is a student engagement club that serves as a channel of communication between current students and prospective candidates. I am particularly excited about being part of a panel that interviews prospective candidates. The program also gives us the opportunity to coordinate on campus employer engagement events. As an ambassador, it gives me immense pride to represent my school in front of prospective candidates and employers.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? Since I lacked formal business education, the gap between my real-time business knowledge via experiential learning and desired skill set kept increasing with each passing day. I found it difficult to present strong business cases for my ideas and gain critical buy-in from stakeholders. Meanwhile, my startup was facing crucial supply chain optimization issues that I could not handle independently. I realized that I had to go back to school to understand business from a holistic perspective.

How did you decide if an MBA was worth the investment?An MBA is not a mere degree, it is an investment in yourself. The course is designed to push you beyond your limits, ensuring soft and hard skill development. A full scholarship and a Graduate Assistantship from W. P. Carey made it relatively easy, but I strongly believed that an MBA pays for itself in the long run.

What other MBA programs did you apply to?A few B-Schools on the West Coast.

How did you determine your fit at various schools? The location, culture, class size, concentration ranking, and Forté Fellowship opportunity were my key evaluation metrics. I was looking for a highly ranked supply chain school with a small class size on the west coast. I met various MBA admissions officers at the QS MBA Tour in India. I also spoke to many student ambassadors and followed their activities on LinkedIn. These early connections not only helped build a network even before my MBA, but also gave a deeper insight into the school’s offering and overall student mix.

What was your defining moment and how did it shape who you are? I was volunteering as a scribe to a visually impaired student who was taking an online exam. My job was to read out the questions on the computer screen and record the student’s answers subsequently. The student fared well on the verbal reasoning section, but could not answer questions on the quantitative and analytical sections because he could not interpret the data and the graphs while I was reading them aloud. The student was attempting the exam for the fifth time after four failures in a row and he told me he was ready to try it again if needed.

This experience forced me to delve into my previous failures and I realized that the difference between success and failure is that “one limiting thought”. Since then, I have stopped taking life for granted and I have started viewing my life as a tool or means to create meaningful impact in my surroundings, without limiting myself to the boundaries of pre-defined success and failure.

What do you plan to do after you graduate? I aspire to work in a rotational leadership role for a global corporation with a major social impact. This, I believe, will give me exposure to various departments and business interactions, laying a strong foundation for the “CEO mentality”.

Where do you see yourself in five years? In five years, I see myself transitioning into a global citizen, leading cross-cultural and cross-functional teams. I enjoy roles that entail revenue generation and I aspire to manage key accounts in Sales and Marketing Operations.

It is my life’s personal goal to empower at least 100 women before I die. I plan to start a non-profit foundation in India to support women in business.

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.