Meet the MBA Class of 2021: The Go-Getters


Lydia Kickham-Dawes

Georgetown University, McDonough School of Business

“I am relationship-oriented and passionate about giving back to our future leaders of tomorrow (children).”

Hometown: Charlotte, NC

Fun Fact About Yourself: I eat my cereal without milk, and I think it tastes so much better this way!

Undergraduate School and Major: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Business Administration

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Credit Suisse, Operations Analyst

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: When I joined Credit Suisse’s Whole Loan Operations Team, there was no training program in place to prepare new hires for success. Throughout my first several months on the team, I noticed that the training resources needed to understand our business were not readily accessible or cohesive. I proposed to my management that a structured training process would enhance the new hire learning experience, and in turn, give our clients the best representation possible. My managers were receptive and asked me, a new hire myself, to lead the training development initiative. Additionally, I created training manuals to explain more intricate processes such as financial modeling and client remittances to help new employees onboard more smoothly.

What quality best describes the MBA classmates you’ve met so far and why? Caring and Passionate. We’re all adjusting to the intensity of the program and it’s so awesome to have classmates who are experts in subjects like Accounting and Economics. Everyone is so willing to help one another and it really shows that we’re in this process together and support each other fully. Georgetown curated a great class full of diversity, and I’m so happy to be part of a community that welcomes and embraces everyone.

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? Georgetown’s Career Center is so hands-on and I knew that they’d prepare me well for the internship and full-time job process. It was obvious that the career center staff truly cares about McDonough students. Additionally, I felt that the Jesuit principles were instilled within the Georgetown community because the staff and students were so welcoming and selfless. I wanted to be a part of the community and give back to future students the same way that they did for me.

What club or activity are you looking most forward to in business school? Net Impact- so that I can volunteer with my classmates and give back to the community at large. I also want to become a Student Ambassador in the spring so that I can work with admissions to recruit talented and diverse candidates for next year’s class.

What was the most challenging question you were asked during the admissions process? “Why Georgetown?” was probably the most important/challenging question that I answered because I wanted my interviewer to get a true sense for the passion I had for Georgetown.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I wanted to pivot from operations to supply chain management. After looking for potential jobs, it made sense to return to school to improve my business expertise, quantitative and leadership skills, and broaden my global experiences to support my path to becoming a supply chain leader.

What other MBA programs did you apply to?  UNC Kenan-Flagler and Emory Goizueta

How did you determine your fit at various schools? I knew I wanted to join a top 25 business program. After visiting multiple schools and chatting with students and staff at some of the programs, I knew I would receive a great education at any school. The most important factor to me was how I fit in with the culture and people at McDonough, and how I felt I could contribute and give back to the school and community. I went to five on-campus events at Georgetown and had a phone call with a different student nearly every week throughout the fall to get a grasp of the culture. I went to diversity programs, sat in on a Supply Chain Management class (and really enjoyed Professor Ernst’s teaching style), and went to an info session where I heard Dan from the career center describe how involved they are with students. I also researched student organizations so that I could determine which organizations would allow me to volunteer and mentor children in the community. All these moments and pieces of research showed me that not only would I grow professionally and academically at Georgetown, but also as an ethical, principled and passionate leader.

Where do you see yourself in ten years? My long-term goal is to become an executive supply chain leader for an airline where I also plan to serve on airline-supported boards that advance community development. My dream has always been to pursue a career in an industry that reflects my enthusiasm for international business in a dynamic global economy; by working for an airline, I can also help people have experiences that broaden their thinking and perspective – something I am passionate about.

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