Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Rohit Kolar, UCLA (Anderson)

Rohit Kolar        

UCLA, Anderson School of Management

“Fun loving, laid-back, light-hearted, Wikipedia enthusiast, outdoorsy, optimistic, adventurous.”

Hometown: Laguna Niguel, California

Fun Fact About Yourself: I’ve been told I’m a pretty good cook!

Undergraduate School and Major: Stanford University, Economics

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Citigroup Markets – Assistant Vice President, G10 Rates Sales

UCLA Anderson is founded on the Three Pillars: Share Success, Think Fearlessly, and Drive Change. Which pillar resonates most with you and why? Among these three pillars, “shared success” resonates with me the most. I believe that people can achieve the most when they can collaborate with, and draw on, the resources of their colleagues and network. I want to study and work at institutions that understand the power of bringing diverse sets of people together.

What makes Los Angeles such a great place to earn an MBA? LA is one of the most dynamic cities in the world, vast and filled with the right niche and setting for anyone. It’s a cultural hotspot as well, a place that sits on the cutting edge of arts, music, film, and sports. Opportunities are abundant here in virtually any industry. Of course, who doesn’t want to go to school a few miles from the beach?

Aside from your classmates and location, what was the key part of UCLA Anderson’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? One of the key facets of the program that stood out to me was the capstone project. Students here can form groups to tackle quarter-long consulting projects for partners, create their own business, or compete to come up with the best real estate projects (among other options!).

What course, club or activity excites you the most at UCLA Anderson?  AREA (Association for Real Estate at Anderson) is going to be an invaluable resource where I can meet and learn from my classmates who share my career interests. I’m excited to dive in and learn as much as I can about the real estate field. I also would give a shout out to the craft beer club – it’s important to remember to savor the hops in life.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: At Citi, I stepped up to temporarily manage my team’s clients and business for four months until a new senior manager could be brought in to lead us. It was a trial by fire in which I learned a ton about managing relationships, working with management, and the rates business. I’m proud to say I succeeded in holding down the fort.

How did COVID-19 change your perspective on your career and your life in general? It served as a timely reminder that the way we work and the very industries in which we work can change in a blink of an eye. Leaders need to be adaptable and flexible now more than ever, and be capable of visioning, inventing, and relating their ideas throughout their organization.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? I was looking to refine my skillset as an effective team leader/collaborator and learn about other opportunities in more illiquid asset classes. I hope to work in commercial real estate development or investment after I graduate.

What other MBA programs did you apply to? Haas, Kellogg, Booth, Stanford GSB, Ross, HBS, Columbia.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into UCLA Anderson’s MBA program? It’s so important to be authentic and open to new ideas and ways of working. At Anderson, we believe we succeed only when we all succeed together. Show through your application how you’ve strived to be a collaborator, and how you’ve worked to raise up those around you! And don’t forget to show that you love to learn! We’re all here to test new waters together.


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