Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Sudiksha Krishnan, Yale SOM

Sudiksha Krishnan

Yale School of Management

Designer, illustrator, and lifelong learner.”

Hometown: Cupertino, CA

Fun Fact About Yourself: I have one flat foot and one arched foot

Undergraduate School and Major: Rhode Island School of Design, Graphic Design

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Senior Designer at Lippincott (a creative consultancy/branding agency)

The Yale School of Management is regarded as a purpose-driven program. What is your mission? How will your MBA at Yale SOM help you fulfill that mission? My dream is to start my own firm that helps mission-driven startups scale using design and strategy. While I have the design piece from my undergrad and previous work experience, Yale will help me better understand the business and strategy component. At SOM, I’ll be able to learn about the motivations of founders, investors, and customers, which are all crucial perspectives to understand to create compelling and impactful design solutions. I’ll also be able to build the skills I need to lead and grow my own business.

What word best describes the Yale SOM MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far and why?
SOM students are impact-oriented. Everyone I’ve met has such interesting passions and goals. It’s allowed for very rich conversations with my peers, from which I always walk away feeling like I’ve learned something new and inspiring.

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Yale SOM’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? One of the key factors that drew me to SOM was that its MBA curriculum offers both the structure and flexibility that I’m looking for. The core provides exposure to several areas of business, allowing me to build the broad foundation that I need in order to achieve my goals. At the same time, I’m also able to take classes across all of Yale’s schools, which is especially exciting to me since Yale has one of the best art programs in the world. I’m very grateful for the opportunity to receive a world-class education in business while also being able to continue honing my skills as an artist and designer.

What course, club, or activity excites you the most at Yale SOM? I’m very interested in the Global Social Entrepreneurship course to India. The course connects teams of SOM students with social enterprises in India, giving students an opportunity to solve complex issues faced by the organization. I’m excited about the course, as it will give me a chance to use both my design and management skills to help a mission-driven organization, which is the exact type of work that drives me. On a more personal level, I’ve also always wanted to travel around India, and am eager to be able to do that as a part of this course.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: A couple of years ago, I was on a team of designers and strategists at Lippincott that worked with UN Women to develop the branding for an initiative called Women’s Empowerment Principles. The initiative calls on businesses to promote gender equality both in their organizations and their communities. Each of the designers on the team developed and presented a unique branding solution, and the UN Women team ultimately selected my designs to further refine and launch. The work debuted in Times Square on International Women’s Day. It was a very surreal feeling to not only be able to see my work out in the world on such a large stage, but also to be able to create work that so closely aligns with my personal values and beliefs.

How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general?
If the pandemic has reminded me of anything, it’s that the future isn’t guaranteed, so it’s important to go after the things that bring me joy and fulfillment right now, both in my career and my life.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? 
Pursuing an MBA had been at the back of my mind for a while, and this past year felt like the perfect time to go after it. Right after graduation, I would love to work as a design and innovation lead at a VC firm or start-up accelerator. In this role, I could use both design and strategy to help the portfolio companies grow their businesses and reach their goals by working with them to develop compelling brands, products, and marketing campaigns.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Yale SOM’s MBA program? Start early and take some time to reflect on why you want to go to SOM. Look for current students and alumni who are doing things that you find interesting, and reach out to them to learn more about the opportunities at Yale and how the school can help you achieve your goals. Use what you learn from these conversations to build a compelling story that communicates why Yale SOM.

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