2020 Best & Brightest MBAs: Kevin Rahill, Duke University (Fuqua)

Kevin Rahill

Duke University, Fuqua School of Business

“Dependable, authentic, empathetic, eager to discover new passions, and driven to develop others and communities.”

Hometown: Chicago, IL

Fun fact about yourself: In 2014, I crashed a motorcycle in Tuscany, Italy and broke both of my arms. Several days later, I visited the Vatican and received blessings from what seemed like every nun in the city.

Undergraduate School and Degree: University of Notre Dame, B.B.A. in Accountancy & Anthropology

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? PwC, Chicago – Deals Advisory Manager

Where did you intern during the summer of 2019?
Y Analytics, Washington, D.C. (6 weeks)
McKinsey & Company in Chicago (10 weeks)

Where will you be working after graduation?
FS Investors, San Diego – Impact Investing Associate (6 months)
McKinsey & Company, Chicago – Associate (Full-Time)

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:

  • Recipient, Keller Scholar: Fuqua’s most prestigious scholarship for “excellence in academics and a commitment to improving communities through leadership and service.”
  • Co-President, Fuqua Special Olympics (FSO): FSO empowers the Fuqua community to connect socially, engage and support local athletes, and fundraise for Special Olympics of North Carolina. Since its founding in 1989, FSO has raised almost $3 million for Special Olympics North Carolina.
  • Fellow, CASE i3 Initiative on Impact Investing: I oversee a team of first-year students working on an impact measurement consulting project for Y Analytics, an impact investment advisory firm that was spun out of The Rise Fund.
  • Cabinet Member, Duke MBA Consulting Club (DMCC): I designed and taught the DMCC Roadmap Sessions, a comprehensive curriculum that prepares first-year students for case interviews at top consulting firms. Additionally, I founded the DMCC Case Family Program, which provided 135 first-year students with additional recruiting resources including one-on-one career prep opportunities with second-year consulting mentors.
  • Academic Fellow, Sustainable Business Strategy: Primary academic support resource for more than 70 students. Assisted with curriculum development and served as student liaison to the professor.
  • Active Member, Gender Equity Working Group: I collaborate with fellow students, teachers, and administration to further gender equity and build a more inclusive environment.
  • Co-Chair, Blue Devil Weekend: As a first-year student, I co-led Fuqua’s accepted students’ weekends, which hosted over 400 prospective students over two weekends.
  • 2018-2019 Dean’s List

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? Along with my great friends Sri Ramarao, Penelope Amuyunzu, and Lindsay Haislip, I am most proud of my role as Blue Devil Weekend Co-Chair. We spent countless hours building a vision of how we could genuinely showcase the social, academic, professional, and personal aspects of the business school experience to admitted students in such a short period. And thanks to the willingness of my Fuqua classmates and faculty to volunteer, we were able to provide the 400+ visitors with a weekend that truly reflected the MBA experience at Duke. The most fulfilling aspect, however, was when I had the opportunity to welcome admitted students I met during the Blue Devil Weekends the following August at First-Year Orientation.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? My proudest achievement in my professional career was my involvement in creating PwC Chicago’s Day of Service. During my first year, I, with a group of freshly-graduated new hires, approached leadership with the hopes of organizing an office-wide day of volunteering. Less than one year later, we successfully orchestrated the event involving 900+ employees volunteering at 40+ Chicagoland organizations, ranging from teaching financial literacy lessons in Chicago Public Schools to cleaning and painting local community centers. The Day of Service has since become an annual tradition and expanded nationwide.

Why did you choose this business school? When applying to business schools, I looked for an academically rigorous program that also provided exposure to both the strategy and social impact consulting industries. For these reasons, I was drawn to Fuqua. Ultimately, I chose Fuqua because of its close-knit, Team Fuqua community. At Blue Devil Weekend (accepted students’ weekend), I was struck by how caring and genuine everyone within the Fuqua community was as well as the strength of the alumni network. Now as a student, that feeling has only grown stronger, as I have been deeply impacted by the lifelong relationships I have built with my classmates.

What is your best advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? Fuqua is a diverse and authentic community and one cannot gain a true understanding without talking to current students, alumni, and visiting the campus. Be thoughtful and do not be afraid to consider how your unique, genuine self fits into Team Fuqua. Then, express your true self and let your personality shine in your essays.

What is the biggest myth about your school? The biggest myth is that Duke basketball tickets are difficult to get as a grad student. In reality, you can attend almost any game as a guest of a student season ticket holder or by waiting in the walk-up line.

Looking back over your MBA experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently and why? During my first year, I wish I had done a better job of being intentional with my time and prioritizing the things that are most important to me. Business school is a unique, extremely fast-paced environment where it’s easy to over-commit and say yes to all social and professional activities. During my second year, I was more intentional about choosing leadership roles that maximize community impact and prioritized personal time for working out and self-reflection. As a result, I feel more fulfilled.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? I admire my classmate Andy Chenlo. Andy has an incredible, selfless work ethic to promote safe, inclusive environments. He is not afraid to challenge traditional norms and push his classmates out of their comfort zones. Not only is he a co-chair of Fuqua’s CASE i3 initiative on impact investing, but he also created Change Agents, a new program developed in partnership with Duke’s gender equity working group. The program dives into the topic of Gender Equity through a serious of dialogues, scenarios, and training.

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? My Dad was my biggest influence to pursue an MBA. I have always admired his tireless, blue-collar work ethic, having successfully raised four sons, attend years of night law school, and become an ethical business leader. He is passionate about setting up those around him for long-term success and has always pushed me to be my best self.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?

  1. Live and work internationally
  2. Grow a business wherein expansion and impact are collinear

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? I hope my peers remember me as someone who is sincerely motivated to go above and beyond for his classmates, invites challenge and strives for excellence, and always maintains a positive outlook.

Hobbies? Traveling to new countries, running, riding my bike to school, Notre Dame Football, exploring the growing Durham food scene, reading new books, spending time with friends and family, and obsessing over how to maximize reward points from loyalty programs

What made Kevin such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2020?

“Kevin exemplifies what it means to be part of Team Fuqua. Kevin’s work ethic, intelligence, selflessness, loyalty, and ability and desire to genuinely connect with, and support classmates, establish him as an invaluable member of the class of 2020. Partnering with fantastic students dedicated to service and helping others, like Kevin, reminds me of how blessed we all are to be part of the Fuqua Family. Specifically, when I think of the role that Kevin plays at Fuqua, I think of the Fuqua paired principle of “Loyal Community.” It states, “We are a family who looks out for each other. Team Fuqua has got your back when you need it the most.”

We are all thankful that Kevin has our back! Whether it is collaborating and leading as a Blue Devil Weekend co-chair, setting a positive example as President of the Special Olympics Club, helping mentor as a CASE i3 and Academic Fellow, or reminding students to have fun at a Duke football tailgate, Kevin helps set the standard, that is brought to life in the popular phrase among Duke students “work hard, play hard.”

Kevin pursues his passions, and supports his classmates and their passions, with enthusiasm and positivity that is contagious and inspiring. Kevin’s amazing ability, and authentic desire to bring out the best in others truly helps elevate the experience for all members of the Fuqua Family!”

Steve Misuraca
Assistant Dean Daytime MBA and MMS Programs


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