“Consistently striving to learn, create, and grow. Collaboration is key.”
Hometown: Bethesda, Maryland
Fun Fact About Yourself: I love musical theater, so I stay as involved in that world as possible. Earlier this year, I directed a comedy musical for a 5-week Off-Broadway residency in New York City.
Undergraduate School and Major: New York University, Tisch School of the Arts
Major: Film and Television
Minor: Business of Entertainment, Media and Technology
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Sony Pictures Entertainment via Avoca Productions, Assistant Editor
Aside from your classmates and location, what was the key part of the school’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? McDonough highlights the importance of considering the social impact our work in the business world will have on others. I believe that we have a responsibility to build people up through the work that we do in an MBA program and beyond, so aligning on this core value was key.
What excites you most about studying in Washington, DC? I grew up in the DC area, but have lived in New York City for almost nine years. It will be exciting to get to know DC as a graduate student – especially because the ecosystem here contains some unique industries.
What quality best describes your MBA classmates and why? Engaged. There is a strong sense of community at Georgetown, especially as we navigate these unprecedented times in a virtual learning environment.
What club or activity excites you most at this school? I am looking forward to getting involved in Georgetown Entrepreneurship because they focus on the entrepreneurial mindset whether that be as a founder, an investor – or someone on a career path unrelated to the startup world. Their overarching view on entrepreneurship is exciting because it opens an array of possibilities for collaboration and support.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Newly-launched television shows are challenging because resources are often limited, departments are small, and timeframes are tight. Recently, I worked on a new show where my department was tasked with creating streamlined editing and media management processes in a constantly-evolving environment. As assistant editor, my role required confident decision-making that utilized my prior startup television experience to formulate workflows for our department and brainstorming with colleagues as we pursued the most efficient processes. My technical knowledge vastly expanded during this season, and I gained deeper insights into the intricate operations of a television production.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I have always been interested in the startup ecosystem, so I began to take that more seriously. Much of what I’ve done throughout my career has had an entrepreneurial approach. I realized that in order to take the next step toward entrepreneurial ventures, it would be extremely beneficial to have the foundation of an MBA education.
What other MBA programs did you apply to? In addition to McDonough School of Business, I applied to Harvard Business School, Wharton, and Columbia Business School.
What was the most challenging question you were asked during the admissions process? The most challenging part of my application process was formatting my resume for an MBA program. Television production is often project-based, so it is common to work at a number of different companies over the years. In the past five years, I’ve done work for Sony, NBC, HBO Sports, CBS Films, and more. Translating that into a digestible resume for business school was a meticulous process.
How did you determine your fit at various schools? Having done my undergraduate degree at New York University, I knew I wanted to attend an MBA program that was in a city environment. This automatically narrowed my search. Beyond that, my goal was to find a program that had an entrepreneurial mindset as well as a focus on management and leadership.
My biggest recommendation for prospective students is to attend a class at one or more of the schools you are seriously considering. This may not be realistic depending on your location, but if you are able to (even virtually this year), I think it is a great way to get to know a program. A few weeks after my Georgetown interview, I visited DC to sit in on a class at McDonough. I immediately felt like part of the community and was able to better understand the campus environment. It was also nice to meet other prospective students who were visiting that day.
What have you been doing to prepare yourself for business school? This summer, I am a part-time fellow, via Score 3 Ventures, at a DC-based angel group called Citrine Angels. It has been a great opportunity to meet passionate people looking to support diverse founders and investors in the startup ecosystem.
McDonough also has resources to prepare incoming MBA candidates for the fall, including mandatory career webinars and pre-MBA quantitative coursework. Additionally, Professor Hunt has been teaching a non-credit summer class for Georgetown students called Venture Capital Externship. It provides an overview of early stage investing and has been a particularly valuable experience both in course content and in acclimating to a virtual learning environment.
Due to COVID-19, there are a lot of unknowns across many MBA programs. Keeping up-to-date with plans for the fall has been an important part of this year’s preparations.
What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? I wouldn’t point to one defining moment. Rather, I would say that my long-standing involvement in theater has fundamentally informed how I approach leadership, problem-solving, and collaboration. The arts have been in my life for over two decades – from dancing and acting, to producing, to directing. All the projects I’ve been a part of have created one fantastic and evolving learning experience. I strongly believe in collaboration between people of different backgrounds, expertise, and talents. The more work I do in theater, the more I learn about various facets of creativity and what an individual’s unique perspective can bring to the table. It is impossible to open a successful theatrical production without trust and teamwork. That reliance on collaboration has given me a skill set that I look forward to utilizing and refining during my time in business school.
DON’T MISS: MEET GEORGETOWN McDONOUGH’S MBA CLASS OF 2022