Meet the MBA Class of 2022: Francesca Sally, Georgia Tech (Scheller)

Francesca Sally

Georgia Institute of Technology, Scheller College of Business

“Adventurous leader driven by curiosity. Competitive problem- solver constantly searching for humor in every situation.”

Hometown: Denver, Colorado

Fun Facts About Yourself: My dream is to be a singer, but I am tone deaf so that dream will never come true. I don’t think I’ll ever get over it. I love movies that can make me cry. I hate peanut butter. I thoroughly enjoy building puzzles. The largest puzzle that I have completed had 5,000 pieces and was over six feet in length. Through seventh grade, I played ice hockey on the boys’ team. I’ve held the Stanley Cup Trophy and the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

Undergraduate School and Major: Northeastern University, Electrical Engineering

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Jacobs Engineering Group, Electrical Engineer in Aviation Services

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? Scheller is at the forefront of solving business problems by leveraging technology and I loved that I could combine my interest in learning business principles with my engineering background and technical expertise in a city as vibrant as Atlanta.  Because I was the leader of the Black Employee Networking Group for New England at Jacobs Engineering, I was excited to pursue two areas of interest at Scheller: strategy and innovation and cross-cultural human resources management. Ironically, Georgia Tech was one of my final undergraduate choices. Being here now is sort of a full-circle moment for me.

The Scheller MBA ranks among the best for instilling innovation and creativity according to alumni and students surveyed by Bloomberg Businessweek. How have seen this in the programming so far? I believe that Scheller students are graduating with innovative and creative mindsets through a combination of the programming and the makeup of the cohort. Each of my classmates has a unique and interesting story that I believe helps each of us expand our way of thinking and our approach to problem-solving. The programming then enhances that by remaining in touch with the latest technologies, facilitating real world application through practicums and fostering an environment of collaboration.

At Scheller, you are literally across the street from Tech Square and living in one of the dynamic business environments in the world. What makes Atlanta such a great place to live and learn for you? It is extremely exciting to be a part of such a young, educated, and diverse city. Despite starting school during a pandemic, I have been able to meet a wide array of people who provide unique perspectives, challenge my beliefs, and help expand my approaches to problem-solving. I hope that I will have more time in Atlanta to continue learning about everything that the city has to offer both personally and professionally.

What quality best describes your MBA classmates you’ve met so far and why? The best quality to describe my MBA classmates is intellectual curiosity. They are all eager to learn from their professors and classmates. They are also eager to experience new things and, most importantly, eager for the world to get back to normal so we can enjoy the Scheller community and all of its traditions.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: My biggest accomplishment in my career so far was being selected to participate in the prestigious Jacobs Engineering Global Opportunities (JacobsGO) Program where I had the chance to move to Australia and work in a different business unit. I was able to represent the Black Employee Networking Group on multiple panels and in conversation with our CEO. This experience enabled me to grow my global network and connectivity and cultivate a global mindset and cultural sensitivity.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far? Earning an internship with IBM’s Extreme Blue program as a Product Manager has been my biggest accomplishment as an MBA student thus far. Being surrounded by so many incredible classmates makes me very appreciative for the opportunity to represent Scheller with one of the world’s most well-known and respected companies.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point in your career? I had reached a crossroads with my job and was ready to expand my skill set and knowledge base. I wanted to move to the business side of STEM, but recognized that I needed to acquire some critical business knowledge to make the transition successfully. By obtaining an MBA, I would be able to procure such knowledge, network with a wide range of people, and have an opportunity to gain experience with practicums and a great summer internship.

What was your defining moment and how did it prepare you for business school? In 2019, I had the opportunity to participate in JacobsGO, a six-month program in Brisbane, Australia. While in the program, I learned about new technologies, worked on some new projects, met a myriad of new people from around the globe, represented the Jacobs Black Employee Networking Group on various panels with our CEO, and travelled throughout Australia, New Zealand, and Southeast Asia. That experience taught me to jump into everything with two feet and make the most of how short the two years will be.


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