“Passionate, affable, impact driven and curious.”
Hometown: Setauket, New York
Fun Fact About Yourself: I studied opera in college.
Undergraduate School and Major: Brown University, Community Health
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Account Executive, RubiconMD
What word best describes the MIT Sloan MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far and why? Empathetic
Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of MIT Sloan’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? With one semester of core courses, MIT allowed me to be the architect of a curriculum that best supported my interest in building a career in affordable housing development. MIT’s small class size and the opportunity to take courses alongside students from other programs, like the MIT Center for Real Estate, offered a unique opportunity to build a strong network that I can lean on as I enter a new industry.
What course, club or activity excites you the most at MIT Sloan? I am eager to take the class ‘Doing Good by Doing Well: Planning and Development Case Studies that Promote both Public Good and Real Estate Value’. Having worked in the Public Health space for the last 8 years, I understand how critical it is to grasp the policy behind the healthcare industry in order to drive impact for patients and providers. With little exposure to real estate development, I can gather that policy holds the same influence on one’s ability to have an impact in creating meaningful and impactful communities. I’m particularly interested in understanding how policy can influence the structural designs of a project and the funding pathways.
Action Learning Labs are one of MIT Sloan’s biggest attractions. Which lab interests you most? How does it fit with your interests? The USA Lab caught my attention early on in my evaluation of the MIT Sloan program. My hope is to build communities that put forward solutions addressing the societal issues analyzed throughout this lab. To build home environments that empower communities, I need to deeply understand that community’s needs, the challenges they face and the types of solutions they want to see. This lab will offer an opportunity to flex muscles of working directly with communities to brainstorm and implement solutions that they want to see for real problems and challenges.
When you think of MIT, what are the first things that come to mind? How have your experiences with the Sloan program thus far reinforced or upended these early impressions? MIT struck me as a tech-forward MBA program. As someone who wasn’t looking to build a career within tech, but rather pivot out of healthcare technology, I didn’t see how MIT’s strength in building MBA graduates who have mastered technological innovation could be applied to my aspirations of building a career in real estate development. After taking the time to review the courses, I was inspired by the unique opportunity MIT Sloan offered to take courses that both gave me the foundational knowledge I need to pivot into real estate development. The school also fostered an innovative mindset and approach that can be carried into my work developing affordable housing.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Shortly after moving to New York, I began volunteering with an organization called Harlem Lacrosse. This program embeds coaches and mentors into public schools throughout New York City and engages students in the sport of lacrosse by offering tutoring after practice. After work, I would come to mentor and tutor a young woman who was looking to apply to boarding school. Caroline had an incredible amount of potential, but wasn’t getting the learning assistance she needed from her public school. Over five months, we worked for hours on her applications. Later that year, she received a scholarship to the Episcopal School and is entering her senior year this year on the honor roll. Episcopal was able to support her independent education plan and she is beginning the process of applying to colleges with much more confidence.
How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? In March 2020, my employer instated an indefinite work from home policy and relinquished our lease on our office-space. Shortly after this announcement, I relocated to Block Island, RI – where I could spend time with family and be by the water. This time away from the hustle and bustle of New York City reminded me how important it is for me to regularly take time for myself, preferably in nature. In Block Island, my day would start with a surf before my 8:30 AM meeting. Around lunch, I would make sure to take a mid-day walk to go see the seals. While I know this lifestyle isn’t sustainable as the world re-opens, I realized how much calmer and more productive I was at work after stepping out in the sun for a few minutes each day. Prior to COVID forcing me to slow down, I rarely left my desk and looking back realized that the lack of a break, in the sun, actually hindered my productivity rather than helped it.
What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? I studied Public Health in college and have been working in the space since graduation. We need very smart, very passionate people dedicated to working to improve our country’s healthcare system for years to come. There are very complicated problems with potential solutions – that when found – can impact millions of people’s health and happiness. While I have learned an immense amount in the time I have spent working in healthcare, I am interested in a career where I can see the impact my work is having on people in a shorter timeframe. I saw the opportunity to build tangible communities, in the form of affordable housing, that impact so many aspects of a community’s health and well-being. As a result, I developed an interest to pursue real estate development – focusing on community development and affordable housing development. After graduation I hope to join a firm specializing in affordable housing development.
What other MBA programs did you apply to? Columbia Business School, MIT Sloan, Wharton, Harvard Business School
What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into MIT Sloan’s MBA program? Authenticity and self-reflection. For me, answering why I wanted to get my MBA wasn’t difficult. The difficult question was asking myself how I grew to want that. That process took a notable amount of self-reflection, processing and articulation. Once I understood the answer to that question, and could summarize it, crafting my application went quite quickly.