Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Maryam Adewumi, U.C. Berkeley (Haas)

Maryam Adewumi

University of California Berkeley, Haas School of Business

“I’m a proud Nigerian-American who’s passionate about technology, healthcare, public policy, CrossFit, and baked goods.”

Hometown: Cincinnati, Ohio

Fun Fact About Yourself: For the last three years, I have organized a conference for 300+ undergraduate students interested in careers in technology.

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Cincinnati; BBA in Business Economics

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Financial analyst at Google

Berkeley Haas is founded on four Defining Leadership Principles: Question the Status Quo, Confidence Without Attitude, Students Always, and Beyond Yourself. Which principle resonates most with you and why? “Beyond Yourself” resonates with me the most. When I reflect on my undergrad experience, time at Google, and the arduous MBA application cycle, I think of everyone who has supported me or served as a mentor along the way. While at Haas, I am looking forward to growing as a leader and learning from those with diverse professional and personal backgrounds.

What word best describes the Haas MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far and why? Open. Throughout the application process, I have leaned heavily on current Haas students or alumni of color to make sure I understand the intricacies of pursuing an MBA. I was blown away by their thoughtfulness and willingness to answer questions or chat about their experiences during such a busy time.

Aside from classmates and the Defining Leadership Principles, what was the key part of Berkeley Haas’ MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Haas is very vocal about their commitment to social impact and DEI, which was a key factor in making my decision to attend. The Center for Equity, Gender and Leadership (EGAL) as well as the social impact experiential learning opportunities were standout aspects that Haas offers.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at Berkeley Haas? With my post-MBA goal of pivoting into social impact or product, I am particularly interested in participating in the Social Sector Solutions (S3) program to learn directly from McKinsey consultants and work with peers to solve real-world problems. In regards to clubs, I am excited to be an active member of BBSA, Q@Haas and Net Impact.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: While at Google, I managed the budget for the artificial intelligence and machine learning teams, including Quantum Computing and Google Translate. During my time on the team, I implemented a complete overhaul of the finance systems and tools used to track the budget. The overhaul took over a year, required building a new budget management process, training dozens of AI/ML experts while ensuring business was not disrupted.

How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? I have always been passionate about social impact and DEI, but it was always something I did on the side or outside of work. COVID gave me the time to think about what was truly important to me and what I wanted to do with my career, including getting my MBA.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? After four years of working in finance, I decided to pursue an MBA to make a pivot into social impact or product management. Haas will provide the opportunity to continue building my technical skill set while taking courses that closely align with my long-term goals of working at the intersections of social impact and technology.

What other MBA programs did you apply to? Stanford GSB, Yale SOM, NYU Stern, Michigan Ross, UCLA Anderson, and Harvard’s Masters in Public Policy program. I was accepted to the majority of the programs I applied to, but Haas’ commitment to DEI, its Defining Leadership Principles, and current students and alumni led me to Haas.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Berkeley Haas’ MBA program? Spend time truly thinking about what makes Haas a fit for you, including the career opportunities, experiential programs, courses, and professors. I also found speaking to current students and alumni allowed me to learn more about the program and determine if I could see myself as a Haas student.


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