2019 MBAs To Watch: Maggy Deiters, Georgia Tech (Scheller)

Maggy Deiters

Scheller College of Business at Georgia Institute of Technology

Art history nerd; happily curious; Teach For America veteran; dog mom; pragmatic optimist.”

Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

Fun fact about yourself: Although it was a secret at the time, I was my school’s mascot for sporting events in college. My favorite team to cheer on was our women’s lacrosse team — their teamwork was amazing!

Undergraduate school and degree:

Sewanee: University of the South, Art History

University of Georgia, M.A., Art History

Lipscomb University, M.Ed.

MBA Degree: Full-time MBA with concentrations in Business Analytics & Marketing.

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? I was determined to make a positive change in the world and decided teaching was a good place to start. To achieve this goal, I joined Teach For America and landed myself a job teaching high school English in Antioch, Tenn. After spending three years in my Teach For America placement school, I moved back to Atlanta and joined Charles R. Drew Charter School as its 9th grade English teacher and 9th-grade lead. It was an amazing experience because of the students and my fellow staff. Primarily serving a mixed-income housing unit adjacent to the school, I focused on building literacy by making reading fun and critical thinking in real-world situations.

Where did you intern during the summer of 2018? I interned with Delta Airlines in Commercial Strategy.

Where will you be working after graduation? I’ll continue with Delta Airlines in Commercial Strategy.

Community work and leadership roles while in business school (include school awards and honors):

  • Merit-based Full Scholarship: Scheller College of Business
  • Graduate Research Assistant for VentureLab: Collaborating and conducting research for entrepreneurs innovating in the tech and science space.
  • Scheller MBA Ambassador: Liaison to promote the MBA program to prospective students.
  • Scheller Interviewer: Conducting interviews with prospective students to help decide the future of Scheller.
  • Vice President, Student Engagement, Women in Business: Working with our members and other clubs to engage the women in our community and create empowering experiences.
  • Alumni Committee: Building connections between alumni and students and hosting major events, such as Homecoming.
  • First Year Case Competition Winner: selected as the category winner in our annual First-Year case competition.
  • Drew Charter School College Essay Tutor: helping Drew’s juniors and seniors learn the art of essay writing and submit their final essays to their dream colleges.

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school and why? Outside of Scheller, I am most proud of my work tutoring Drew students and helping them write their college essays. While some of them were prior students of mine and some were not, I taught them about the power of story-telling and helped them write compelling essays to their dream schools. While many of these students were going to be first-generation college students, I am especially proud as they have received admission some great colleges, including University of Georgia, Yale, Tufts, and my very own Georgia Tech.

Within the Scheller community, I have especially loved roles that allow me to give back to Scheller. For example, on the Alumni Committee, I got to be a problem-solver and connector for this year’s student body. A frequently cited issue was lack of substance in networking experiences and I wanted to help turn mediocre conversations into meaningful ones. My idea was a simple one: create casual, open-conversation spaces for alumni and current students within the same industry to get to know one another.

My vision came to fruition in the fall with our first dinner. Alumni from all across the city working in technology firms, including Amazon, Mailchimp, and Salesforce, gathered with several tech-focused students and enjoyed some real talk. From pitfalls of the job to the daily aspects that got alumni excited, everyone learned something. The alumni enjoyed reminiscing about their favorite professors, and the students were able to make authentic connections that they will be able to carry well into their job searches. Now, the dinners will be annual, and future Scheller students will enjoy this unique opportunity.

What was your biggest work Achievement? During my second year as a teacher at Drew Charter School, our 9th-grade team of teachers, students, and parents held a symposium for the community. We were raising money for education in the name of stopping child trafficking, specifically motivated by the film Girl Rising. My students culled knowledge from their core classes and held creative events such as spoken word, games featuring facts around the tragedy of trafficking in third world countries and even a mathematics exhibit all in the name of raising money to help fund education for this group of girls from the film. The producer of the film flew down to be our keynote speaker, and our doors opened to the Atlanta community to come to learn with our ninth graders.

We raised over $500. While this may seem minuscule, for a group of fourteen-year-olds from uniquely challenging backgrounds, it felt like a great feat. My students used what they were learning in class and applied it to a project which would make the world a better place. As I watch those students get accepted to college and make their life plans, I’m proud to know they remember this project and are still striving to work hard and be a positive change. As I shift into the world of business, I remember this project for all of the transferable skills: working across departments, motivating others, being resourceful, and keeping the big picture in mind.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? This is certainly a challenge since the quality of Scheller professors has been absolutely top-notch. However, I would have to say Charles Mulford. He exhibits what can only be described as pure joy when teaching accounting concepts and quickly establishes a bond with his students by encouraging words and endearing anecdotes. Beyond our core accounting, I took a course on analyzing technological firms and gained insights on my own investing as well as how to spot suspicious cash flow on a balance sheet. Admittedly, two years ago, I don’t think I knew what a financial statement really was, so it has been enlightening to learn such a substantial amount from a professor with such substance. Not only was Professor Mulford an inspiration in best accounting practices, he is a great leader. Professor Mulford inspired me to think more deeply, work more assiduously, and live a life with great purpose, and for that, I am truly grateful.

What was your favorite MBA course? Marketing Research with Cem Ozturk combined my two passions: marketing intuition and the analytics to guide business decisions. This course fundamentally changed how I think about decision-making and gave me the tools to validate my decisions. From building predictive models to testing those models, I felt a spark of excitement as I began to understand the “why behind the why.” Whether it was working through a pricing case or making sense of actual sales for a drug store, I was hooked. Not to mention, Professor Ozturk is a master of pedagogy, winning our “Elective Professor of the Year” award several times. I know I’m not alone in my appreciation for this course!

Why did you choose this business school? Having very little exposure to business due to my humanities background, I knew I wanted an up-close view into my future as a problem-solver for businesses. Scheller’s practicum courses were the answer I had been seeking; getting to work with NCR, Boeing, and the DeKalb Department of Watershed provided the opportunity to solve real problems for real companies. Additionally, I wanted to challenge the other side of my brain, and the quant-heavy course offerings have been essential to my growth.

What is your best piece advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? My best advice would be this: get to know the students! Come chat with us – attend a class. The best way to make your decision about business school is to truly put yourself in the shoes of current students, and they are eager to talk about all things Scheller!

What is the biggest myth about your school and how was it the same or different than what you experienced? The biggest “myth” about Scheller is that its students are a bunch of analytics nerds! Okay… so technically, yes, we’re total analytics nerds. That said, we’re also kind, collaborative, and from a wide range of backgrounds with a diverse range of interests from rock climbing and investing to sustainable energy and real estate.

Think back two years ago. What is the one thing you wish you’d known before starting your MBA program? You will end up loving numbers, so embrace them now before you get started!

MBA alumni often describe business school as transformative. Looking back over the past two years, how has business school been transformative for you? First, I feel more hopeful for the world thanks to Scheller’s alumni and current students. This bunch of people has an unmatched drive and awesome creativity. I feel so lucky to have met and learned from each and every one of them.

Second, thanks to Scheller, I transformed my career, and it started with the accumulation of skills. From the jargon and high-level economic concepts to the “into the weeds” technical skills and hands-on, challenging practicums, my ability to perform a number of different roles increased exponentially. This growth was due in large part to the core classes which were both rigorous and fulfilling. Finally, career coaching was essential in my pivot from high school English teacher to Delta Air Lines intern. My advisor was a support system and a critic. (I am especially grateful for the practice interviewing!)

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? Only one?! Being in the company of such thoughtful and brilliant humans makes it hard to choose. However, Karin Manley has become a dear friend and is a truly exceptional woman. As the vice president of finance for Women and Business, president of Marketing Club, and a leader of the Peer Leadership team, she is smart and a wonderful collaborator. I am inspired by her willingness to help others through challenging work and her quiet, confident leadership. Even outside of school, I am amazed at her range of talents from playing Beethoven to winning Jane Austen writing contests. She is undoubtedly Scheller’s wonder woman!

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? I often say I took the circuitous route to business as my college degrees are in art history and education. It was my parents who encouraged me to pursue my passions of art history and teaching and those same parents who later supported my decision to get my MBA at Scheller College. Although they took a “hands-off” approach, they were critical in helping me make decisions that led to my current path. They asked tough questions and were eager to learn with me at every step of the way.

What is your favorite movie about business and what was the biggest lesson you learned from it? Hidden Figures. I learned that superior work wins and smart negotiations can lead to win-win situations for all parties.

What was the goofiest MBA term or acronym you encountered during your time at Scheller and what did it mean? During one of our early and particularly stressful first weeks, one of my peers vocalized some panic about the workload. Another peer and self-designated class clown simply responded, “Duh, This. Is. Grad. School.” otherwise known as “TIGS.” With that, we all had a big laugh and hunkered down to help our distressed friend.

“If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be…unabashedly hounding sixteen-year-olds about the importance of grammatically correct semicolon usage; it is the “game-changer” of punctuation.

What dollar value would you place on your MBA education? Was it worth what you paid for it – worth more or worth less? While I couldn’t come to an exact number, as a current student in our Pricing Strategy and Revenue Management class, I feel that the value it’s added to my life and future path is well above what I paid. Scheller is certainly the best bang for my buck… I’d make the same decision again in a heartbeat!

What are the top two items on your bucket list? 

  • I studied abroad in Italy and I’d like to return… mostly for the gelato.
  • To cheer 100% of my first group of Drew freshmen students across their graduation stage.

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? As a friend with a positive attitude and a creative solution to whatever problem needs solving.

Hobbies? Anything outdoors! Lately, I’ve enjoyed hiking the trails that surround Atlanta, and I am training for a half marathon. And, as a future Delta Air Lines employee, travel is pretty high on the list as well!

What made Maggy such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2019?

“Maggy Deiters is the kind of student that every professor wants to have in class. She has a warm and engaging personality and is always quick to help others. Her comments and questions in class help me to better understand how other students are grasping the materials. She is a sheer pleasure. I was fortunate to have her in both my core and elective courses.”

Charles W. Mulford
Invesco Chair and Professor of Accounting
Scheller College of Business at Georgia Tech

“I was consistently impressed by how Maggy was able to learn new methods very quickly. She independently completed challenging analytics assignments with the highest quality. She was also a superb team member. She demonstrated her ability to collaborate and convert her learnings in the classroom to address unguided, real-life problems by generating interesting insights for Walmart stores using historical data. Please accept my highest recommendation for Maggy.”

Cem Ozturk
Assistant Professor of Marketing
Scheller College of Business at Georgia Tech

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