Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Jack Heaphy, Harvard Business School

Jack Heaphy

Harvard Business School

“Banker by day, musician by night.”

Hometown: Northport, NY

Fun Fact About Yourself: I’ve performed at Carnegie Hall.

Undergraduate School and Major: Liberty University – Business Administration (Finance concentration). Piano and Accounting minors.

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Societe Generale – IB Associate (oil & gas sector).

What word best describes the Harvard Business School students and alumni you’ve met so far and why? Conviction. Every student and alumni I’ve met from HBS has a life mission they’re chasing after, held with a deep and unwavering conviction. They’re not afraid to break norms or convention to accomplish what they’ve set their minds on. These are world changers with a laser focus and equipped with an arsenal of world class resources through HBS.

What makes the case method so attractive as a means to learn and become a better manager? My learning experience, until this point, has been traditional: read the textbooks, memorize the power points, correctly answer the multiple choice questions. The case method presents a daunting but exciting challenge: to confidently (maybe sometimes a little less confidently) reach and defend a conclusion, with limited data and time. You have to think on your feet and put yourself in the mindset of a CEO. I can’t think of a better way to prepare for business or management.

Aside from your classmates and cases, what was the key part of Harvard Business School’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? The Harvard innovation lab (i-lab) excites me because it’s an incubator for great ideas and cutting-edge technologies. HBS is the definitive leader among all business schools in fostering innovation, as evidenced by its exceptionally high yield of founders and its ample investments in entrepreneurial programs such as the i-lab. This was certainly an important consideration for me in choosing to apply and attend HBS as I hope to get involved in the i-lab to create technology that equips musicians and artists to retain ownership and maximize the value of their creative output.

What course, club, or activity excites you the most at Harvard Business School The Christian Fellowship Club. My faith is the most important part of my life. I’ve leaned upon it during my lowest and highest moments and have seen firs-thand the power of Jesus transform peoples’ lives. My faith will continue to be my anchor over the next two years at HBS, and the Christian Fellowship Club will be an important community for me to rely on.

When you think of Harvard Business School, what is the first word that comes to mind? Why? Excellence. In my mind I’ve always equated HBS to a company like Apple or sports team like the New York Yankees. Those brands that are in a class of their own, and are instantly recognizable for doing things the right way, with excellence, and never taking shortcuts. HBS demands and produces excellence, which is why its brand is recognizable and impeccable.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I navigating the 2020 oil crisis (depressed oil prices and deteriorating demand) to structure and execute critical financing solutions for our clients, helping them maintain liquidity and ride out the COVID storm.

How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? COVID-19 reminded me that life is short and unpredictable, and that it was time to run after what I was passionate about. It gave me a little more time to reflect on life and clarity that now was the best time to pursue my MBA.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? I want to make a pretty significant career shift from finance to the music tech space, and felt now was the perfect time given my age (26) and work experience (4 years). I knew there were several practical knowledge gaps I needed to fill (strategy / marketing) and a new network I needed to be connected to in order to make this dream a reality. HBS checked those two boxes (and so much more). My goal after graduation is to be an advocate for independent artists by creating a solution for them to retain ownership of their music and careers in light of the surging creator economy.

What other MBA programs did you apply to? Yale SOM.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Harvard Business School’s MBA program? Authenticity and boldness are key. Be confident in yourself and don’t shy away from your amazing accomplishments. At the same time don’t deviate from those core value that got you to where you are, and make sure those values are etched into the fabric of your application. More practically, be tactical with how you utilize each short answer prompt (HBS mandates strict word counts) and use each question to reflect a different attribute of yourself. Most importantly – have fun! The application process is equally introspective as it is challenging, and you’ll be amazed at how much you learn about yourself going through the process.


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