Meet The MBA Class of 2022: Vedanti Shah, Vanderbilt University (Owen)

Vedanti Shah

Vanderbilt University, Owen Graduate School of Management

“Finance enthusiast passionate about learning, leadership, and love for adventure sports.”

Hometown: Ahmedabad (Gujarat), India

Fun Fact About Yourself: I love Rubik’s cubing. Currently learning how to solve a 5*5 cube.

Undergraduate School and Major:

St. Xavier’s College – B.Sc. Biochemistry

Gujarat University- M.Sc. Biochemistry

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Art Amore (creative arts startup)- Marketing Manager

Aside from your classmates, 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? There are so many things! I was immediately drawn to Vanderbilt’s LDP program. I wanted to use the b-school experience to evolve as a leader while transitioning career paths. A designated program to support this goal was a no-brainer. Despite a small international community, Vanderbilt has a plethora of resources for international students – a designated orientation component for International students (ISBP), support gatherings for international students throughout MBA, affinity groups, and much more.

Although, picking one, it would be that Owen is competitive but not cutthroat. While I had heard this statement multiple times during the application process, every single day in the program I realize how true it is. I appreciate everything at Owen, but none of it is possible without the people.

At Owen, you are part of one of the most dynamic business environments in the country. What has made Nashville such a great place to live and learn for you? The vibrant Nashville music community serves as a perfect complement to the Vanderbilt business school experience. The fast-growing business environment brings multiple opportunities to interact with SMBs and the community. This allows us to implement business school learning in real-time projects to create impact for organizations around us.

What quality best describes your MBA classmates you’ve met so far and why? Collaborative, competitive, diverse, inclusive, passionate, and empathetic. My classmates have helped me prepare for interviews at 6 am and 9 pm. I have seen them respect, embrace and appreciate the diversity in the program. We collaborate on projects within and outside the program. The personal scale is very real and authentic. I couldn’t have asked for a better MBA cohort.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Fresh out of college, when I joined my first job, being the new enthusiastic employee, I immediately saw how rapidly the company was running through cash reserves in overhead expenses and proposed that the company change its operational model. I didn’t know a thing about operations or how to determine the impact of such a large-scale project on current organizational processes. I utilized the next few weeks determining the project scope & plan and learning multiple business functions for the first time. When the model was finally implemented, we saved thousands of dollars in operational costs. This project helped me realize the value of constant innovation and a learning attitude in the workplace.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far? COVID didn’t allow me to travel to Nashville until the first few weeks of my program were already through. Vanderbilt had partially in-person classes, but I could only attend everything virtually. Amidst that, we had our student government senate elections. I ran for it but didn’t expect to be elected because all my interactions with my classmates had been entirely virtual. When the results came in, I realized that, albeit virtually, I was able to create friendships meaningful enough for so many classmates to vote for me.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I have worked in startups for years now and was longing to create larger scale impact in my role. I had worked for clients in financial services and liked the industry. But as a biochemistry major working in operations and marketing, I didn’t have the skills or the technical expertise for a role in finance. I decided that pursuing business school would be the best strategy to pivot towards a long-term career in finance.

What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? When I was volunteering with a non-profit in India, I was able to help two kids move out of shelter homes into colleges, and they went on to become first-generation college graduates in their families. One of them pursued nursing and was crucial to relief efforts during the pandemic. I was humbled that my small effort helped a youth achieve their dream. The humility and empathy from them is helping me become a better leader and teammate in business school every day.

DON’T MISS: Meet Vanderbilt Owen’s MBA Class Of 2022

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