Meet Georgetown McDonough’s MBA Class Of 2023

Solar panels outside Row Houses at Georgetown University.

P&Q: The larger Georgetown University is known for its public policy and international development programming. How does McDonough connect to the larger Georgetown (and even Washington DC) ecosystem to provide opportunities for MBA students?

PM: “A differentiating quality of the Georgetown MBA is the opportunities to engage with our professors and programs across a host of disciplines, including public policy and international development. We offer two dual degrees in these areas — an MBA/MPP with our McCourt School of Public Policy and an MBA/MSFS with our Walsh School of Foreign Service, in addition to joining MBA/MD and MBA/JD programs with Georgetown Medicine and Georgetown Law.

We also build “only in D.C.” experiences into our curriculum. In addition to the numerous individual faculty who incorporate D.C. institutions into their classroom experience, more formalized examples of this include:

* MBA Certificate in Nonmarket Strategy: MBA students in this program have the unparalleled opportunity to incorporate the rich resources of Georgetown’s Washington, D.C., location in their studies and to observe and experience up close how business success and principled leadership are shaped by regulatory, political, cultural, and social forces. Students have the opportunity to attend events on campus and off at federal agencies, firms, and organizations that feature prominent global figures, and to interact directly with business leaders, government officials, policymakers, leaders of interest groups and industry alliances, and the media.

* MBA Certificate in Consumer Analytics and Insights: In this program’s practicum course, students work closely with local organizations to learn about their business context, conduct research, and analyze their consumer data. These organizations range from nonprofits (such as AARP and Share our Strength (No Kid Hungry)) to large companies (such as Audi USA, Volkswagen and its Electrify America subsidiary) to startups (OmMade Peanut Butter).

* MBA Certificate in Sustainable Business: In this program’s practicum course, students engage in experiential consulting projects sourced from local D.C./Maryland/Virginia companies. For example, in Spring 2021, we had multiple projects with Framebridge and one with a startup called Joylet.

* Business for Impact: This faculty-led initiative at the school connects with D.C.’s corporate, public policy, and international development ecosystem through teaching, research, symposia, and applied learning activities. For example, its Portion Balance Coalition works with dozens of partners with a presence in the D.C. region including companies (such as Nestle and KraftHeinz) and nonprofits (such as Partnership for a Healthier America and Center for Science in the Public Interest) to co-create systemic solutions to the U.S. obesity epidemic. Through activities funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), project directors and student leaders employ social marketing strategies to improve health outcomes in Global South countries such as Jordan and Tanzania. And through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Rural Opportunity Initiative (ROI) fosters economic development in rural communities nationwide and engages 30 student leaders annually in experiential impact investing opportunities through the ROI Scholars program.”

Georgetown McDonough Students. Courtesy photo

P&Q: Two hallmarks of the McDonough MBA experience are the Global Business Experience and the Executive Challenge. Talk to us about these events and how they prepare MBAs for the future?

PM: “Experiential opportunities are hallmarks of the Georgetown MBA. We want students to graduate with the confidence of having successfully navigated complex business environments.

The Global Business Experience is a required course in the Georgetown MBA that connects student consulting teams with organizations around the world to work on a real-life business issue. Once students are assigned to a company and country, they engage with representatives from the local embassies, as well as organizations like the Inter-American Bank and the World Bank, to learn more about the business environment and culture of the regions to which they will travel. They work remotely with their organization’s executives and then travel to the country to finalize the projects and deliver recommendations to leadership of their organization. While abroad, they also have opportunities to immerse themselves in the business culture of their host country through company visits, cultural excursions, and meetings with alumni. While we were remote last year due to COVID, we were still able to complete these consulting projects and cultural engagements virtually to provide that consulting experience.

The Executive Challenge is the final exam of the core Leadership Communications course, testing their leadership communication, influence, motivation, and relationship-building skills. During this day-long case competition, student teams role-play three different leadership interactions with executive-level Georgetown alumni, who take on the personas of board members, investors, and senior executives and also serve as judges for the event. We are excited to welcome more than 100 alumni from around the world back to campus each year for The Executive Challenge, where they also have an opportunity to network with our students and with one another.”

McDonough School of Business, Georgetown University: Washington D.C., Architect: Goody Clancy


1) Washington DC: “Sitting at the intersection of global business and politics as well as home to a thriving tech and social impact entrepreneurship scene, Washington DC provides a unique ecosystem of opportunities. This interesting mix of industries gives the city a distinct culture which is young, energetic, diverse, and passionate about social justice. I am also excited to be in a historic city, and looking forward to explore the many museums around town!”
Ameya Deshmukh (’23)

2) Experiential Learning: “What is the biggest myth about [my] school? Experiential learning only happens through the classroom or the global business experience, FALSE! Georgetown has so many opportunities to put classroom learning into practice while in school:

* Want to work at a Venture Capital Firm? Venture Fellows

* Want to work at a start-up? Insite Fellows

* Want to work for a small business? Board Fellows

* Want to work for a non-profit? Impact Fellows

* Want to work for social enterprise? Business for Impact Consultant

These are avenues for experiential learning that give students deep exposure to problems firms are facing and opportunities to use classroom learning to be a part of their solutions.”
Leena Jube (’21)

3) International Focus: “What drew me to McDonough was its distinct focus on global business. The program offers unique opportunities such as the Global Business Experience (GBE), which is taken in the spring semester of the second year. The course provides MBA students with an opportunity to travel abroad to consult for leading global employers on real-life business problems. It sounded like a great opportunity to explore different business environments and build a global perspective.”
Ameya Deshmukh (’23)

4) Culture: I chose Georgetown for its emphasis on instilling a sense of service leadership in its students, by cultivating “men and women for others”. Having cut my professional teeth in the social impact sector, a core value I wanted to deepen in business school was how to live a life in service of others. Georgetown not only offered this through its programming, but also encouraged service leadership as a core element of its pedagogy and amongst my peers.”
Rohan Shamapant (’21)

5) STEM: “I appreciated the flexibility of the program, namely through the electives that allow me to get a STEM designation, which resonates with my interest for technology.”
El Yazid Areski (’23)

And a bonus…

6) Class Size: “I was looking for a program with class sizes that are small and inclusive and where I knew all my peers by name. While I may not yet know all my fellow 250 peers by name, I already know the 60 peers in my cohort in just a month.”
Tanvi Seth (’23)

Georgetown University MSB students prepping for class. (Photo by Leslie E. Kossoff/Georgetown University)


1) “The best advice I received was to understand the significance and gravity of being me. As an applicant, reflect upon your experiences, values, and identity. Lean into those elements to bring your unique story to life in your application. By doing this, the admissions team can visualize how you’d fit into the McDonough community. Who will you be while on campus? What will you bring to the McDonough community as a student and alumni? Washington

Adcoms get thousands of applications so have maximum empathy for the team evaluating them! The best way to make their job easier and you stand out is to reflect on what makes for a great MBA cohort and the role that you can play in making that happen. Much of the learning is peer-to-peer, so emphasize what your experiences and skills will add to the whole – and the video submission is perfect for that so take your time!”
Flora van Vredenburch (’23)

2) “Obviously, you need to put you best foot forward when applying, so if that means taking a little bit more time to make your application as impressive as possible, don’t feel rushed. Make sure to highlight your leadership experience. If you find yourself lacking in that area, go explore ways to volunteer and step up into a leadership role. There is nothing that can replace the experience that comes from leading people and it will serve you well during you time a McDonough and beyond.”
Philip Busick (’23)

3) “I connected the dots of my career journey by answering these questions:

  • Who am I and what am I passionate about? (What I bring to the table?)
  • What do I want to do in the future? (The Post MBA goals)
  • Why MBA? Why Georgetown? Why now? (How Georgetown will be instrumental in getting me to my goals?)

Creating a clear story with tangible examples demonstrates research, interest, curiosity, drive, and communication skills. Head fake, it also gives you a head start in building your network as you reach out to current students and alumni to learn about the program and in thinking about how to make the best use of your time in the MBA program to reach your goals.”
Leena Jube (’21)

MBA Student Hometown Undergrad Alma Mater Last Employer
El Yazid Areski Casablanca, Morocco Ecole Hassania des Travaux Publics McKinsey & Company
Julian Barquin Montevideo, Uruguay Universidad de Montevideo Senator Carmen Asiain
Philip Busick Washington D.C. Truman State University U.S. Army Special Operations Command
Zoë Davis Newton, MA Connecticut College Wayfair
Rio M. Dennis Jersey City, NJ University of Pennsylvania Goldman Sachs
Ameya Deshmukh Dubai, UAE Purdue University Adidas
Brendan Gernes St. Paul, MN Creighton University International Executive Service Corps (IESC)
Tanvi Seth Fremont, CA Drexel University Johnson and Johnson
Rachel Solomon Nambi Atlanta, GA Clemson University Boston Consulting Group
Flora van Vredenburch London, United Kingdom Newcastle University Marks and Spencer’s
Natalia Velasquez Brampton, Canada University of Waterloo Air Canada Vacations
Dazell D. Washington New Orleans, LA Cornell University KIPP Texas

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