2022 Best & Brightest MBA: Anna St. Clair Chopp, Ohio State (Fisher)

Anna St. Clair Chopp

Ohio State University, Fisher College of Business

“The curiosity to seek, courage to dream, and work ethic to make it happen.”

Hometown: Boise, ID

Fun fact about yourself:

  • Je parle française (I can speak French)
  • I have played in an underwater poker tournament

Undergraduate School and Degree:

  • The Ohio State University, College of Public Health
  • Master of Health Administration
  • Colorado State University, Honors College
  • Bachelor of Science, Health and Exercise Science- Sports Medicine
  • Minor: French Language and Culture

Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? Medical Assistant at Colorado Heart and Vascular

Where did you intern during the summer of 2021? McKinsey & Company Inc. (Cleveland, OH)

Where will you be working after graduation? McKinsey & Company Inc., Associate

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

  • President, Fisher Healthcare Association
  • Treasurer, Fisher Consulting and Strategy Club
  • Member, Fisher Graduate Women in Business
  • John A. Russell Scholarship Recipient, 2021-2022
  • First Place, Illinois Gies College of Business MBA Strategy Case Competition
  • First Place, The Ohio State University Internal Case Competition

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? I am most proud of winning first place at the Illinois Gies College of Business, MBA Strategy Case Competition during my first year at business school because it was when I realized I was growing in my business acumen. I had come into the MBA program from a non-traditional background of healthcare. I had a sports medicine undergraduate degree, experience as a fellow at Ippokrateio Hospital in Athens, Greece, and was a medical assistant in a cardiology clinic before deciding to pursue a dual MBA, MHA. My first semester of business school was rough. I was thrown into the business world at a master’s degrees pace with no prior experience. I attempted to balance studying, networking, internship searching, and résumé building but seemed to be failing at it continuously.

With nothing else to lose, I applied to be a part of the strategy case competition team, and surprisingly, was chosen. I endured the most grueling 24 hours of no sleep, analyzing every data point and sentence, exploring every avenue and option, and trying to recall all that I had attempted to learn thus far — all while battling the feeling of never knowing what the “right answer” was. When all analyses, presentations, and questions were over, they called the winning teams in reverse order. 4th place wasn’t us. 3rd place wasn’t us. 2nd place wasn’t us — and just when I thought we didn’t place at all, our name was called: The Ohio State University, 1st place. In that moment and in the days of reflection to come, I realized I had been retaining the information I was studying, was successful in learning all that was thrown at me, and most importantly, was growing in my business acumen more than I realized. That is why being apart of the Illinois Gies College of Business, MBA Strategy Case Competition Team is the academic achievement I am most proud of during business school.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? Being chosen to be a McKinsey & Company summer associate (and further being offered a full-time position as Associate upon graduation) is the achievement I am most proud of in my professional career thus far because I proved to myself that I have the ability to create my own future. Obtaining a McKinsey & Company internship is a tough feat for any business student, and especially for one whom had very little experience in business, strategy or otherwise. Although I had done my best to gain experience through case competitions, short-term consulting engagements, and other extracurriculars, I assumed it didn’t truly reflect what was needed for a high-level consulting position. Yet, I still made the decision to simply apply and exercise my standard of work ethic throughout the process.

Starting from square zero of not knowing what a case interview was, I prepped for months reading, practicing, and doing case interview drills, never knowing if I would even get the opportunity to interview. On top of this, I was still studying, networking, “extracirricular-ing”, and applying to other internship positions as well. I figured that when I received a rejection from McKinsey, I would at least have a couple other options for the summer. I was ecstatic when I got the opportunity to do a first round interview and somewhere in-between shocked and nervous to get called back for a second-round interview with partner level consultants. Having to push aside my nerves and not “get rusty” on cases for another week, I finished my second-round interviews the best I could with the preparation I’d done. I gave myself a high-five afterword, simply being proud for making it this far.

That night, I got a call from a phone number I didn’t recognize and on the other side was the McKinsey partner I had interviewed with saying, “Congratulations, we would like to extend you an offer for summer associate,”. I’m pretty sure my reply was somewhere along the lines of “what?!” out of sheer disbelief. It took me a good weekend to believe that I had been offered a position, and actually signing the paperwork to know it was real. With this experience, I made the realization that I truly do have the ability to create the future that I want with the work ethic I have. I went from use-to-be medical assistant not knowing what a case interview even was, to getting an offer for summer associate at one of the MBB, Big Three management consulting firms. That is why being chosen to be a McKinsey & Co. summer associate, and further being offered a full-time position as Associate upon graduation is the achievement, I am most proud of in my professional career thus far. It taught me that I have the ability to create my own future.

Why did you choose this business school? The reason that I chose the Fisher College of Business, and the larger Ohio State University, was due to the vast international opportunities that Fisher provided. Global volatility is on the rise, which has created more and more avenues of globalization throughout all industries and sectors. With this globalization, as well as having some personal experience working abroad, further learnings and teachings about how to navigate international business terrain was incredibly important to me. Fisher was able to offer classes programs exploring that. These included core classes of “Global Business Environment”, electives of the “GAP Program” (Global Applied Projects, a semester-long consulting engagement with an international company/non-profit), and further participation in non-traditional campus programs like “The Washington Campus” and “FASPE” (Fellowships for the Study of Professional Ethics), I knew that I was going to be able to have forefront globalization discussions and experiences that I wanted and needed for my future career. That is why I chose the Fisher College of Business, and the larger Ohio State University.

What was your favorite MBA event or tradition at your business school? My favorite Fisher MBA event and tradition is the big Diwali celebration that Fisher puts on every year for students. Fisher students are an incredibly diverse group of people from different industries, backgrounds, and cultures. Fisher celebrates that diversity and holding the Diwali tradition is just a small example of that. All students are invited to participate to learn more about Diwali and culture it showcases by dressing up and enjoying a fun-filled night of music, food, and dancing. I loved being invited to participate in a celebration that I originally wouldn’t have been able to and learning more about it. I also love that Fisher brings students together to participate in different holidays together and celebrates different cultures. I hope to be able to continue celebrating Diwali with the friends I’ve made at Fisher even after graduation.

What is the biggest myth about your school? The biggest myth about the Fisher College of Business is that it is a school that only specializes in supply chain. The Fisher College of Business MBA program is an incredibly diverse and opportunity filled program. Its core courses focus on development of “soft skills” in addition its technical classes. There are a multitude of credits geared towards experiential learnings by having core courses that are semester-long consulting engagements in various sectors of industry (including non-profit). Its course path is designed to be open by having 60 elective credit choices in order to give autonomy to students to design their own path and/or allow for fulfillment of a STEM designation or any other functionally geared career path (i.e. strategy, finance, marketing, etc.). This openness allowed me to take classes that have challenged my biases and explored my thought processes. I was also able to grow my business acumen and grow as a person. The Fisher MBA is not only a supply chain focused MBA…unless you want it to be.

What is one thing you did during the application process that gave you an edge at the school you chose? Something that helped me through the application process and aided me in making my decision on what business school to attend, was to take the initiative and ask to talk to current students of the programs. By doing this, I was able to learn about their experiences in the program as they were in it. I received advice about different electives to take, programs and scholarships to watch out for, and what living in the area of the program was like. This really helped me rank my preference in schools and make my final decision.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? Thao (Tea) Mai is my MBA classmate and friend who I most admire. Because of her credibility, bravery, and way she always cares for others, she inspires me every day. Tea is from Vietnam and after graduating from undergrad in Pennsylvania went on to work as a strategy consultant, advising insurers in the Asian Pacific region. She has been in board rooms of multinational companies primarily in Life Science Industry, coordinating and providing guidance on complex casualty insurances and clinical trial insurance programs. She is incredibly brave in that she chose to step away from that life and go to business school in order to seek a new job that allowed for more work-life balance. Since being at b-school, Tea has served on multiple student boards including student government, taking in and voicing the opinions of the students to better the program as a whole. Despite her multiple titles, she makes sure to take time for students who ask to sit down with her, and friends that want to see her. She juggles multiple aspects of life in addition to school and does so with grace. She exemplifies what it means to be a leader and to be oneself. She is the classmate I most admire.

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? My brother most influenced my decision to pursue an MBA degree because he showed me that it was possible. I had spent my entire academic career before the MBA in pursuit of becoming a physician or physician’s assistant. However, when I realized that I wanted to have more of an impact, I struggled with the idea of leaving these pursuits behind given I was so far into it. My brother had spent his entire academic career geared towards engineering and even had a Master’s degree in it. Still, he decided to pivot his career, as he also wanted more of an impact, and decided that business school was the route to accomplish that. After a year of studying and applying to schools, he got in and I got to see him graduate two years later. Through this, he showed me that it was possible to pivot and pursue a different career than the one I had originally planned in order to go after the one that I now wanted. My brother showing me that gave me the confidence to take the risk and apply to business school myself, in pursuits of the impact I wanted to have.

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

  • Start a non-profit geared towards pursuit of equity in women’s education worldwide
  • Become a United Nations Ambassador

How has the pandemic changed your view of a career? I’ve always described the pandemic as “The Great Exacerbator”. Not only did it change many aspects of life, but it brought to the surface for re-examination many underlying aspects that most took as facts. For instance, the way healthcare was thought to be delivered has evolved with the emergence of telemedicine. The way classes were taught have changed to now provide options of attending virtually. And the way people work is now in debate about productivity levels between working from home or working from the office. With these rapid and numerous break downs of “what was”, it has introduced the foundation for the question “what’s possible?”. I now carry this question to the viewpoint of my career, in that I no longer look at my career in the sense of “What job or title do I want to be” but instead, “What is possible for me to be?”.

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

“Anna Chopp is a fantastic MBA student.  She is hard working, resourceful, and combines solid insights with great leadership presence.  When Anna puts her mind to something, it will get done. In the words of one of the core faculty: “Anna Chopp doesn’t take no for an answer!” Aside from her impressive accomplishments inside and outside of the classroom, she might be the most genuinely interesting person I have met at Fisher. Her wide interests and great degree of success make her the definition of a renaissance woman. In addition to being a bilingual, piano-playing, figure skating, dual-degree MBA triathlete, she once took her final exams early so she could join a crew sailing from Florida to the Bahamas! Anna Chopp is certainly one of Fisher’s Best and Brightest MBA students, and we look forward to seeing where her career takes her.”

Roger Bailey
FTMBA Academic Director


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