“Idealistic introvert striving to create balance in the world through empathy and candor.”
Hometown: I was born in Brooklyn, NY; I moved with my family to Florida when I was 12.
Fun fact about yourself: I really enjoy playing and watching others play video games. Some of my fondest memories with my brother are coming home from school and playing Halo together when we were younger.
Undergraduate School and Degree: Georgetown University, School of Nursing and Health Sciences – International Health major
Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? AchieveMission, Development Associate – Washington, DC
Where did you intern during the summer of 2019? Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Giving Pledge Intern — Seattle, WA
Where will you be working after graduation? Bain & Company, Consultant
Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:
- Black Students at Tuck co-chair
- Tuck Admissions Associate
- Net Impact co-chair
- Consortium for Graduate Study in Management Fellow
- Consortium for Graduate Study in Management Liaison
Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? I am most proud of the work I’ve done as one of two Consortium Liaison members at Tuck. Coming to Tuck, I knew I wanted to focus on diversity and inclusion; specifically, I wanted to make sure that students of color felt safe and seen on campus and were able to quickly surface any concerns or recommendations. In this role, I’ve served as a bridge between the Consortium T’19, T’20, and T’21 classes supported Consortium students with recruiting and academic endeavors and helped build awareness of the Consortium and its purpose among the broader Tuck community. One of the highlights of my Tuck experience is seeing how the Consortium network has created a “home away from home” feeling among our fellows.
What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? One of my earliest professional assignments was as a consultant working with a health client that was introducing alternative health therapies to support individuals with traumatic brain injuries. My responsibility involved gathering and analyzing data to justify the establishment of this clinic and track the progress of the patients who participated in the program. Because I worked on-site, I had a chance to see the impact of these alternative therapies through the data. Even more, I heard from patients who felt so appreciative after their stay at the clinic that they were eager to share their stories of recovery with me and the others who worked there. This experience solidified my desire to chart a professional career that prioritized delivering a positive impact on others.
Who was your favorite MBA professor? One of my favorite Tuck professors would have to be Professor Adam Kleinbaum. I first encountered Professor Kleinbaum on my first-year Global Insight Expedition (GIX) experience, where he served as our faculty representative. It was evident from our first interaction that he was thoughtful and truly enjoyed getting to know others. My most vivid memories of the GIX were watching Professor Kleinbaum at a table with one or more students engaged in deep conversation after breakfast. I admired Professor Kleinbaum’s concerted efforts to build rapport with each one of us and valued the honesty and curiosity he brought to those conversations. I was fortunate to also later take the core course Personal Leadership with Professor Kleinbaum in the spring of my first year, where his passion for understanding social networks and personal behavior shone through as he guided the class through different approaches to developing a high-performance organizational culture.
What was your favorite MBA event or tradition at your business school? One of my favorite traditions at Tuck is Tuck Talks. Tuck Talks is a storytelling night that occurs every term where 6-8 students, TPs, faculty, and staff share the experiences, relationships, and/or passions that have shaped their perspective and given them purpose. Tuck Talks is an intimate event that allows students to get to know the people that work and study alongside them on a deeper, personal level. Tuck Talks is an important part of Tuck because it amplifies the voices and stories of students who wish to share a lesser-known part of themselves as a way to foster stronger Tuck fabric.
Why did you choose this business school? I ultimately chose Tuck because I wanted an MBA experience that would push me out of my comfort zone, expose me to global opportunities, and support my personal and professional goals. As someone who is used to city living, Tuck’s location was an immediate draw because it was outside of my norm. The location naturally lends itself to a more immersive experience, which means that building strong, lasting relationships is emphasized across classes. I also wanted the MBA to be an avenue for me to gain a greater global perspective and the TuckGO requirement offered many opportunities for me to do so (I have so far taken part in the Israel GIX and term exchange in Barcelona, Spain). Lastly, even before stepping on campus, Tuck presented itself as a community firmly invested in my personal development. From the engagement with admissions representatives during the application process to the highly personalized acceptance call from an alumna I mentioned in my essay, Tuck made me feel seen.
What is your best advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? The best advice I would give is to take your time and try not to get overwhelmed by the application process. I realize this is easier said than done, but taking the time to understand your motivations and how they fit into the culture and resources of Tuck, or whichever school you’re applying to, is so necessary. The MBA goes beyond just the two years of the program: it’s an institution that you are a part of for the rest of your life, so make sure it’s an academic and social fit. I found that visiting the school and speaking to as many students and alumni as possible were the best ways to learn about the community outside of actually attending.
Which MBA classmate do you most admire? Linda Horner is a fellow T’20 classmate and friend for whom I have deep admiration. Linda is a full-time parent who still finds time to participate across campus and excel in the classroom and on the job. She is someone who commands a room when she speaks and isn’t afraid to be her full self in any setting. Her bravery is something I aspire to and her deep sense of service can be felt throughout campus through appointed roles such as Admitted Students Weekend co-chair, Diversity Conference co-chair, and Tuck Africa co-chair. Additionally, Linda is also pursuing her own entrepreneurial interests through Tuck’s independent study program and Center for Entrepreneurship offerings. In her free time, Linda can be found having coffee chats with classmates and prospective students and filling the Tuck hallways with her infectious laugh. Her dedication to her family and her classmates is truly one of a kind and I am proud to be able to call her a friend.
Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? Growing up, my parents always emphasized the importance of education and its ability to be an avenue for a better life. My parents both did their best to ensure that my brother and I had what we needed growing up and seeing their sacrifice spurred me to find a path that would provide me with personal fulfillment and the means to show them my appreciation for their efforts. My MBA journey is dedicated to my parents whose sacrifice and guidance made this possible.
What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?
- Speak at a TedTalk — I am always looking for ways to improve my public speaking.
- Be a mentor — I have been searching for mentors throughout my professional career and I hope to fill that need for others who might be in the same position as me.
In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? I want my peers to remember me as a thoughtful and sincere person who believes in the good in humanity and who challenges those around her to use their resources and access to confront pressing problems.
Hobbies? Cooking, jogging, hiking, video games, dancing, and reading.
What made Sonovia such an invaluable member of the Class of 2020?
“It was at the end of Sonovia’s first year at Tuck when I sat with her and the other four members of her First Year Project team, inviting each to share what makes each person in the room a good leader. Sonovia had the role of project lead, and had orchestrated her team’s work helping a non-profit organization in Flint, Michigan to improve wellness in the community. In addition to calling out her leadership role and ability to navigate ambiguity, the quality that most identified with Sonovia was her honesty. As a professor in two of her courses and as the advisor for this project work, I have witnessed her commitment to honesty in the way she works, leads and inspires others to participate. Not boastful or arrogant, Sonovia’s style is one of grounded, honest, and eyes-wide-open leadership.
I’ve watched Sonovia leverage these skills at Tuck since early in her first year and have seen her confidence blossom as she continues to make a lasting impact on the Tuck community. As a Consortium Liaison and a co-chair of Black Students at Tuck, she’s committed to creating spaces for students of color to thrive on campus, and as a co-chair of Net Impact she brings her previous expertise in nonprofits and the public sector to support students looking to break into the space. Furthermore, Sonovia has shown her commitment to investing in the Tuck community through her work as a Tuck Admissions Associate. Sonovia clearly operates by the mantra that you should leave a place better than you’ve found it. The care and concern she brings to the classroom, in her extracurriculars, and in her interactions with classmates and prospective students is undoubtedly felt throughout campus.”
Clinical Professor of Management
Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College