2022 Best & Brightest MBA: Angie Siefert, New York University (Stern)

Angie Siefert

New York University, Stern School of Business

“Epilepsy Warrior, NYU Stern Class of 2022, and President of NYU Stern CannaBusiness Club.”

Hometown: Naugatuck, CT

Fun fact about yourself: I was the captain of the Varsity Flute Ensemble in high school

Undergraduate School and Degree: Villanova University, Undergrad School of Business – Economics and Finance

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? Citigroup, AVP in Firm Relationship Management

Where did you intern during the summer of 2021? Summer Associate at Greenrose Acquisition Corporation (cannabis SPAC), Amityville, NY

Where will you be working after graduation? Curaleaf

Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School: (Include school awards and honors)

    1. President of NYU Stern CannaBusiness Club, a professional club on campus to provide Stern MBA students with the education, critical thinking, and access to excel in the nascent cannabis space. Through a balanced approach of responsibility and entrepreneurship, we contribute to shaping the cannabis industry into an equitable, socially conscious, and sustainable industry
    2. Co-Founder NYU CannaNetwork:

Bridging our sister chapters:

NYU CannaLaw (Leverage NYU’s student talent to build a more responsible and reasonable cannabis industry, and will be offering legal services assisting individuals previously convicted of cannabis crimes)

NYU CannaHealth (NYU student organization exploring the intersection of cannabis on health, policy, and social justice)

NYU Wagner CannaPolicy (Offer resources and education necessary to responsibly advance cannabis legalization, rebuild communities harmed by prohibition, and positively impact the development of the cannabis industry)

  1. Participant in the NYU Stern Leadership Accelerator
  2. Co-founded a non-profit, Bridge To Cure, with six volunteers to fundraise, raise awareness and support the Epilepsy Foundation of Connecticut; Raised $140,000 and solicited donors through planning, organizing, and hosting five events in NYC and Connecticut
  3. Patient Mentor, Gala Committee and Member at NYU Langone Health FACES (Finding a Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures)
  4. Control in NYU Langone Ketogenic Diet For Epilepsy Study

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? I am most proud of co-founding CannaNetwork. Like the “seed to sale” intricacies in the plant-touching supply-chain side in cannabis, there are several ancillary professional elements and hurdles to overcome in the industry. A few include business, law, healthcare, and policy, all of which are part of the NYU CannaNetwork.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? I am most proud of finding my calling within the healthcare space to help others who are battling epilepsy, in addition to several other conditions, to have access to an alternative and holistic approach for positive healthcare outcomes.

Why did you choose this business school? After I had my first unexpected grand-mal seizure at age 24, my professional dreams took a back seat for four years as I navigated my health and underwent several failed treatments. Following a miraculously successful neurosurgery at NYU Langone, today I am seizure free. I have been given a second chance to not only let my career take the front seat again but also dedicate myself to others with healthcare difficulties.

I saw firsthand how talented, innovative, and passionate all the movers and shakers are at NYU and Stern, and I wanted to be part of this unparalleled ethos for the chance to dive deep into holistic healthcare breakthroughs with irreplaceable colleagues, alumni, and opportunities.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? I will say Professor Mary Billings. She made accounting at 8am Monday morning one of my favorite classes. Even as she taught over zoom, she naturally is very engaging and assigned very intriguing case studies. Can anyone say an 8 am Monday morning class was their favorite?

What was your favorite MBA event or tradition at your business school? Typically, Stern takes first year MBA students out to Ellis Island for a welcome dinner, and because of COVID last year, we didn’t have that opportunity to meet classmates in a school sponsored social setting – but Stern didn’t forget. Stern hosted that event for MBA2s in fall 2021, and I made soon-to-be lifelong friends from business school from that evening alone.

Looking back over your MBA experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently and why? When I was a first-year MBA student, I didn’t know what I was missing when electing to take courses and events remotely. If I could go back, I would have opted to take as many classes as I could in-person to build my network in-person and learn and grow in this beautiful city!

What is the biggest myth about your school? I’ve heard Stern is overtly competitive, and I couldn’t disagree more. I felt very included in all my team group projects, as my teammates were looking out for the entire outcome of the project, not just for themselves.

What surprised you the most about business school? I knew there would be great of opportunities, but NYU Stern opened doors to a new career that I didn’t even know existed – I never thought I would intern at a cannabis edibles technology start-up and also at a cannabis SPAC within a few months of being in b-school (both internships were found via NYU Stern network)!

What is one thing you did during the application process that gave you an edge at the school you chose? I started networking with students early. I found club events via social media, club pages and Eventbrite and attended some including the Stern Private Equity Venture Capital Club Annual Conference off-campus.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? I would say Khalil Romain. He was on my team for the NYU Stern Leadership Accelerator’s live case, and he gave me reassurance and positive support when I felt overwhelmed and nervous due to the time constraints. His team-player skillset turned my anxiety into confidence, which in retrospect, was one of the catalysts to my communication skills today.

Additionally, he joined the NYU CannaBusiness Board as VP of Club Partnerships and Corporate Relations, and has brought in a unique perspective of social justice in the cannabis industry to the forefront of the club. He is also Co-President of the Association of Hispanic and Black Business Students (AHBBS).

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? All it took was me talking to the teller at the local bank in Connecticut when I was on a field trip during elementary school. She never will realize that she sparked such an interest in a young girl to learn more about finance.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?

I would love to start a fund where I could invest in, advise, and mentor social equity applicants (individuals previously impacted by the war on drugs) to start and run their cannabis businesses.

I will continue building out my non-profit, Bridge To Cure, to provide scholarships for future Sternies who have epilepsy in their family.

I know first-hand the struggle of managing each day with the fear of an episode, which leads to a unique vantage point on career, life, and healthcare for all, and coming to Stern will give those students opportunities to achieve their aspirations too.

How has the pandemic changed your view of a career? The pandemic opened my eyes to the capabilities a virtual team environment can bring. Also, newly discovered cannabinoid compounds have been shown to help protect individuals from COVID. The advances in cannabis treatments are already on the forefront, and going to NYU Stern opened those doors for me to make a difference in the industry.

What made Angie such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2022?

“In my experience working with hundreds of full-time MBA students at NYU Stern, Angie Siefert stands out as a courageous, driven, and focused leader who is relentless in her commitment to helping her community.

I’ve gotten to know Angie through leadership development programming. I immediately noticed her ability to empathize and connect with people of all different backgrounds. She was consistently the first student to raise her hand in groups and be open about her experiences, setting a tone in which her classmates felt comfortable sharing. This was particularly meaningful during students’ first semester at Stern when programming took place over Zoom, allowing for authentic building of community.

Angie seizes challenges as opportunities. Mask mandates required her to change an event venue for her nonprofit’s gala at the last minute. Not only did she quickly find a new venue without complaint, but she harnessed the opportunity to craft a new, more intimate experience for guests, ultimately raising $45K+ for the Epilepsy Foundation of CT. Following the event, she shared with me how grateful she was to have had this new experience and that she might reconfigure the event in the future.

Angie consistently brings this innovative mindset to her experience at Stern. Founding a new industry club at Stern is no small feat. In a short time span, she brought a vision to life as co-founder of the NYU CannaNetwork, which ties together Stern’s CannaBusiness club with other canna clubs across NYU, providing networking opportunities for her classmates. Angie’s commitment to community impact is unparalleled.”

Hannah Levinson
Senior Associate Director, Leadership Accelerator

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