Meet The Berkeley Haas MBA Class Of 2022

Students from the Class of 2022. (From left to right: Chris Quaidoo, Kevin Hu, Torrey Mayes, and Jon Thompson)

P&Q: How has COVID-19 impacted your business school?

PJ: “Like many schools, we transitioned quickly from in-person to remote instruction in early March, allowing faculty to teach remotely and students to continue the program remotely despite the challenging public health situation.

Since then, our faculty and staff have been working around the clock, designing and investing in technological innovations to provide students the best academic experience. Some of those innovations include: launching state-of-the-art “virtual classrooms” in conjunction with Berkeley Executive Education; creating a new Faculty-Student Engagement series, which brings together students and faculty to talk about any topic ranging from current events to faculty research; and designing high-quality asynchronous content to supplement synchronous remote learning.”

Haas Exterior

P&Q: Berkeley Haas is being increasingly associated with entrepreneurship. What types of programming and resources do you devote to entrepreneurship? What have been some of your successes in this area?

PJ: “Students interested in entrepreneurship have access to an abundance of resources through our Berkeley Haas Entrepreneurship Program.

Some of those resources include:

* The Trione Student Venture Fund, which provides $5,000 grants to early-stage startups that include Haas students.

* Access to an industry specialist in the Career Management Group who advises students interested in working at startups.

* Opportunities to participate in competitions such as LAUNCH, the Berkeley Startup Competition and social impact ventures through the Global Social Venture Competition (GSVC).

* Access to NSF Innovation Corps, a science program that encourages cross-disciplinary innovation.

* Lean Launchpad, a training platform for innovators

* Opportunities to join SkyDeck, a multidisciplinary startup accelerator located at UC Berkeley.

Mentorship programs and mixers that tap into our rich Haas Alumni Network and greater Berkeley community, connecting current students with entrepreneurs and those working in related industries.”


Entrepreneurship is certainly popular among the Class of 2022. That includes Tomás Campos, who cites the Bay Area location and the entrepreneurial ecosystem as reasons why he joined the class. Thus far, he hasn’t been disappointed. “Since enrolling at Haas, I have been exposed to so many resources, including accelerators, incubators, education programs, VC’s, clubs, etc. I’ve also had the opportunity to learn and talk with many Haas entrepreneurs.”

What are some of the other big attractions to the Haas School? Here are thoughts from students past and present:

1) Leadership: “I was drawn to Haas’ emphasis on preparing to lead in the new economy — a world where human productivity and economic output has been, and will continue to be, fundamentally changed by automation and artificial intelligence. As a university, UC Berkeley has long served as a meeting point for STEM, progressive social policy, and access to excellent, world-class public resources. These forces can work together as an ideal vehicle for societal growth. Haas, as a business school, also emphasizes training in diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), which is embedded into our decision-making techniques. DEI has been a fundamental part of my own career and personal experience, and will continue to be a crucial part of my work.”
Vasu Panicker (’22)

2) Silicon Valley: “Many students are attracted to Haas because of its proximity to Silicon Valley and various opportunities like Haas’ Student Seed Fund and accelerator programs like Skydeck. There are also opportunities in sustainability, clean tech, and social impact.”
Sevita Qarshi (’22)

3) Defining Leadership Principles: “I chose Haas for its Defining Leadership Principles: Question the Status Quo, Confidence Without Attitude, Student Always, and Beyond Yourself. Those principles are woven into the Haas community and literally etched in stone in the courtyard. I’ve found that Haas students are bright, curious, talented, and incredibly humble individuals who see opportunities to make the world a better place. Haas is collaborative, and students are constantly finding ways to climb to the top and lift each other up along the way.”
Geena Haney (’20)

Berkeley Haas Interior.  UC-Berkeley photo

“Curiosity and an aptitude for tackling difficult problems have never been more important now that the world is undergoing serious changes. Before school even started, Haasies started modeling the Students Always principle. I had the pleasure of working with nine other Haasies on an Instagram AR filters project to promote social distancing and spread school spirit in a digital, innovative way. Although most of us come from non-technical backgrounds, we watched tons of tutorials to create fun filters for Haas and Berkeley students. I believe that being a “Student Always” will carry me a long way at Haas and beyond.”
Aileen Lu (’22)

I love all these defining principles — each captures such a critical aspect of what it means to be a powerful, ethical leader. If I had to pick one, I would choose Confidence without Attitude. I believe meaningful change comes from stewardship and examples set by humble leaders. It takes great courage to have conviction, but it takes even greater courage to develop an accepting, empathetic environment where you welcome good-faith debate and discussion.”
Sania Salman (’22)

4) Social Impact: “Haas’ tight-knit community and its focus on sustainable finance and investing led me to choose the program. I wanted a program where I could focus on innovating small business investments while managing a socially-responsible investment fund. The intersection of social impact and finance made it an ideal program for me.
Catherine Romero (’22)

5) Great Traditions: “My favorite MBA event is the Consumption Function. On the first Friday of each month, all of the MBA students come together and celebrate Haas’ diverse community through food, music, and dance. Some of my favorite Consumption Functions include Diwali, Lunar New Year, and Veterans Day. Consumption Function is just one of Haas’ many traditions that strengthen bonds and truly celebrate Haasies.”
Ezgi Karaagac (’20)

My favorite unofficial Haas tradition is HaasBoats. During this event, Haas students drive up to Lake Shasta, rent houseboats, and relax for the entire weekend. We managed and drove the boats ourselves and there was no shortage of complex issues to solve. Furthermore, this was the first Haas trip where I was able to invite my girlfriend. Since she lives in Philadelphia, we don’t get to see each other often. However, the community was incredibly welcoming to her and we both had an amazing time!”
Evan Wright (’20)

Lecturer Robert Strand, executive director of the Center for Responsible Business, demonstrates one of the four new Berkeley Haas virtual classrooms. UC-Berkeley photo

“My favorite MBA event is Story Salon. Students come together to listen to a few classmates share personal stories about their lives and what they’ve experienced. My peers support each other when we listen to gut-wrenching stories and cheer each other in the triumphs that immediately follow. I’ve found that these moments are enriching, not only for each individual listening but also to the community as a whole who is now bound by shared experience.”
Geena Haney (’20)


What does it take to land a spot in the Class of 2023? This is what two members of the Class of 2020 advise:

“Reflect on Haas’ four Defining Leadership Principles – Question the Status Quo, Student Always, Beyond Yourself, and Confidence Without Attitude – and really think about how you’ve embodied them. Haas looks for students who value these ideas and bring them to the classroom and the boardroom.”
Geena Haney (’20)

“BE YOURSELF. The thing we value at Haas above all else is who you are as a person. We embrace our differences and use them to make the community better. Furthermore, we are a community. We are always helping and supporting each other. That is the “Haas way.” So, if you just want to attend to simply look out for yourself and get a high-paying job, Haas is not for you.”
Evan Wright (’20)

What led the Class of 2022 to pursue an MBA? What was the toughest question they were asked during the application process? What other schools did they consider? Check out the student profiles below for answers to questions and many more. 

MBA Student Hometown Undergrad Alma Mater Last Employer
Kanyinsola Aibana Brooklyn, NY Harvard University ideas42
Niklas Bretschneider Lohmar, Germany WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management McKinsey & Company
Tomás Campos Santiago, Chile Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile AES Gener
Aileen Lu Taicang, China University of California-Berkeley Domi Coding Inc.
Nathan Mason Minneapolis, MN University of Maryland U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Torrey Mayes Las Vegas, NV Duke University Palms Casino Resort
Kokei Otosi Fremont, CA New York University Van Alen Institute
Vasudevan Panicker New York City, NY City University of New York Special Music School, Kaufman Music Center (NYC)
Sevita Qarshi Alameda, CA Brown University Tastemade TV
Catherine Romero Los Angeles, CA UC Santa Barbara City National’s Private Bank
Sania Salaman Dallas, TX Georgetown University Dalberg Advisors


Our Meet the Class of 2022 Series

The COVID Cohorts: Meet The Newest MBA Students in the Class of 2022

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Carnegie Mellon University Tepper School of Business

Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management

University of Texas-Austin McCombs School of Business

University of Washington Foster School of Business

Indiana University Kelley School of Business

Emory University Goizueta Business School

Arizona State University W. P. Carey School of Business


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