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Meet the MBA Class of 2021: Alberta Asafo-Asamoah, Imperial College

Alberta Asafo-Asamoah

Imperial College Business School

“An astute problem solver and a ball of energy.”

Hometown: Accra, Ghana and London, UK

Fun Fact About Yourself: I used to be a choreographer for a dance organisation at Syracuse University. Occasionally, I create dance videos with my family.

Undergraduate School and Major: Syracuse University, Double Major: Economics, Political Science

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Founder of AlgebraInTheCity and Impact Investing Analyst at Transformational Business Network

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Imperial’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school? Why was it so important to you? There are many reasons why I chose Imperial. As an aspiring impact investor, I was looking for a programme known for its academic rigor. In reviewing Imperial’s electives, it was evident that the institution would bridge any knowledge gaps I had, as the programme takes a theoretical and practical approach to learning. For example, the Imperial Innovation Challenge compliments the innovation and entrepreneurship electives, and the Group Consulting Project allows students to work collaboratively to understand and address a company’s needs and challenge existing assumptions.

Furthermore, because I was transitioning into a new industry, I had set goals in mind, so I was particularly impressed by how personalised the admission process was. I felt like the programme coordinators understood who I was beyond my profile and statistics. During my interview, I was asked detailed questions about my industry, which led me to delve deeper into my motivations.

I know I am not supposed to mention my classmates, but I have to say that I have been taken aback by the enormous initiative that each member of my cohort displays. It has been incredibly inspiring.

What club or extracurricular activity excites you most at this school? I’m on the committee for the Africa Business Club, so I’m excited about the initiatives we have planned to create opportunities for members and the Imperial network. I’m looking forward to the Entrepreneurial Journey because I have a business idea in mind that I hope to launch. This six-month elective covers the front-to-end process of business development and execution. It covers a wide range of business skills like customer discovery research and value proposition. Imperial provides extensive support for entrepreneurs, so I am excited about maximising all the opportunities. Additionally, social impact underpins all my interests, so I hope to join the Social Impact & Responsible Business Club as a member.

What makes London such a great place to earn an MBA? How have you taken advantage of London to further your business education?

London is a financial hub and the epicentere of multiculturalism in the UK, so it is easy to thrive in the bustle. I’ve lived in three countries across three different continents, and each has provided a unique experience, but I know where to go for what I need in London.

Networking is crucial for MBA students, so for those looking to build relationships outside of the programme, in pursuit of employment, it is easier to do so as many companies are headquartered in London. I know Zoom has played an essential role in our lives, but I still enjoy face-to-face business meetings, particularly when establishing new relationships.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far In 2018, I founded AlgebrainTheCity (AITC) to help bridge the educational attainment gap. In analysing students’ performances in grammar, private, and state-comprehensive schools, it was evident that there was a significant difference in how education was delivered in low-income areas. So, I focused on developing a comprehensive curriculum for parents who sought tuition for their children. I began to assist a new and local tuition business by designing a Math and English curriculum and providing business support. The centre has grown considerably since it was first founded. My current goal is to create products for AITC, design tools for students with learning difficulties, and focus on content for other geographies, namely Ghana and the United States.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I was an Assistant Director in Corporate Banking and had over four years’ experience as a banker. Although I enjoyed the structure and the learning experience, I decided that I wanted to work in development and impact finance in East and West Africa, so I left to transition into this space. Uniting purpose and skill, I had an excellent opportunity to work in a company in London that catalyses impact-driven investments for businesses in Kenya and Uganda. I decided to pursue an MBA because I wanted to learn about different financial instruments and investment strategies to contribute to the investment and startup ecosphere in the emerging markets. With an MBA, I hope to develop new investment opportunities to help governments and investors use funds effectively and help social enterprises create fundable business plans that address the social investment criteria.

What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? The realisation that I could create my own opportunities after leaving a banking career changed my perception of entrepreneurship and my long-term career goals. As a solution-driven individual, I recognised that I wanted to establish a purpose-driven career that went beyond financial gain. I founded an educational tuition and consulting company and, inadvertently, my past experiences and passion for social change formed during my undergraduate years as the VP for UNICEF at Syracuse University, began to align with my professional experiences. I began to read, learn, and engage in discourse around impact investing and sustainability in the emerging markets.