Meet The Imperial MBA Class Of 2019

Carrico Torres

Imperial College Business School

Hometown: Taos, New Mexico, USA

Fun Fact About Yourself: I grew up on a ranch, and most of my family are proper American West cowboys.

Undergraduate School and Major: Princeton University, Major: Politics, Minor: Latin American Studies

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Kepler Group, Client Solutions Manager

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: For me, the most rewarding, and also time- and effort-consuming aspect of my career has been mentoring and developing new employees who have just graduated from university. Specifically, I love getting to know and help shape the goals for young employees, help them develop a framework for accomplishing their goals, and working to give them opportunities to showcase their talents and set them up for future success in their careers.

What quality best describes the MBA classmates you’ve met so far and why? Team-oriented. Even though most of our programme is about personal development and projects, a significant portion is based on teamwork and team assignments. We all have extremely different interests, work experiences, and goals. Since a majority of us want to change industries, chances are there is someone in the cohort who has the knowledge, experience, and contacts to make that happen! Anyone in the cohort will spend extra time with you explaining the finance assignment, helping you with crafting your CV, or practicing case interviews.

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? There were several facets of the Imperial MBA that played a part. Firstly, I loved the school’s focus on sustainability and innovation, and how to combine the two together. Second, the one-year programme fit really well into my overall plans that helped me finance the MBA, and I was also awarded a scholarship for women in business to help the transition. Finally, the idea of being part of a truly international network enthralled me – and there’s no better place to do that than Imperial in London!

What club or activity are you looking most forward to in business school? While completing my MBA at Imperial, I’ve been involved as a Student Ambassador and as a Forte Fellow, both of which give me opportunities to interact with prospective students at Imperial College Business School. Not only does this give me an opportunity to give back to the Forte community that has supported me in my studies, but I also am able to pass on knowledge, tips, and information to future business school students as they make their college decisions.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career?I had little business training before working at my first job, which was at an advertising agency in New York City. Because I did not know if I was suited to a business-oriented role, I took a job doing just that to test the waters. I found very quickly that I immensely enjoyed it, especially the opportunity to merge creativity and analytics. After three years, I reached a point where I knew I loved business and saw opportunities there. However, in order to have as much of an impact as I wanted, I needed training in the business basics, such as finance, accounting and economics, in order to ensure I am competitive long term. I’m hoping to eventually move into non-profit and development work, where I also see a huge opportunity for a business mindset to make resources go further and have a bigger impact than they currently do.

How did you decide if an MBA was worth the investment? Like any analytical person, I made a checklist, and only selected a programme if it satisfied every piece of my checklist. For me, it needed to make sense in a few categories, such as career forward movement, anticipated salary increase, time spent on the programme, proximity to family, types of connections made, being in an urban center for job opportunities for both myself and my significant other, and even the strength of the economy at the time. For example, take the length of the programme at Imperial combined with only one year’s lost income as opposed to two years. This makes the payoff period for the MBA so much shorter for me particularly, which increased its attractiveness. In addition, knowing that every class I took (save one) would teach me something new, I knew that most of my time would be spent learning new concepts and applying them, so my return on investment in the knowledge sense was very high because I wasn’t ‘duplicating’ educational material. At the end of the day though, I knew that while all of these factors contributed to selecting the right programme for me, I needed a collaborative environment where I could learn, grown, and be challenged, and I 100% found it at Imperial!

What other MBA programs did you apply to?My original intention was to move to the west coast of the USA to be closer to family, so I primarily focused on UT Austin and UC Boulder business programs.

How did you determine your fit at various schools? I determined how I would fit on programmes based on two factors: primary research on the specifics of the programme and speaking to current students on the programmes. For the first part, I found that I was very interested in how sustainability merged with profit-seeking firms, and focusing on programmes that I knew focused on sustainable growth as a primary focus, rather than a secondary focus. I knew it was possible to grow a firm in a responsible way, I just didn’t know how. Secondly, I spoke to students currently on the programmes and tried to understand their primary impressions of the programme were and what type of person would fit in there.

What was your defining moment and how did it shape who you are? I don’t think there’s just one defining moment in a person’s life, rather an amalgamation of small moments that lead to larger ones – small hopes that lead to larger dreams. I’ve always loved traveling and grew up living abroad for some portion of my life as well, which fueled my excitement in moving to London for an MBA. I grew up on a ranch; this gives you responsibility and respect for life and your surroundings, which has driven my long term desire to serve other people to the best of my ability using as many of my talents as possible. I lived in a place that prioritized community over competition. This has underpinned my goal of contributing to the world around me in a positive, impactful, whole-hearted way. I continue to grow and change and the MBA has absolutely contributed to who I am and what I will continue to prioritize in the future.

What do you plan to do after you graduate? I’m hoping to secure a marketing position at a tech or FMCG company where I can own the full development and life cycle of a product and work closely with a collaborative team to drive a real impact on consumer’s lives. I’m hoping to stay and work in London for a few years, and then perhaps return to the West Coast USA to continue working from there.

Where do you see yourself in five years? More than anything, I want to be working with people who inspire me, for a product I care about, and a company that cares about the world around them and contributes to social, political, and economic causes. I don’t think of a career journey with an endpoint because I think a person’s hopes, goals, and dreams change over time as an individual matures. Who knows, I didn’t expect to be in business five years ago. Maybe I’ll consider law school in another five.

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