Meet The MBA Class Of 2023: Giustin MacLean, Ivey Business School

Giustin MacLean

Ivey Business School at Western University

“Creative problem solver, inclusive collaborator, concert pianist, conductor, music director.”

Hometown: Halifax, NS

Fun Fact About Yourself:

Undergraduate School and Major: University of Toronto – Philosophy

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Self-employed – Director of Music

How has the case method enriched your learning? The case method constantly tests you on what you think you know, pushes you to quickly acquire what you don’t, and forces you to make decisions with limited information. As one of my professors said early days, the benefit of case learning is that you get to make mistakes in the classroom and learn from them so that you don’t make them in your career.

Aside from classmates and cases, what part of the school’s MBA programming led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? One of the biggest reasons I chose Ivey is its extensive alumni network. Ivey’s network offers seemingly limitless opportunities to connect with incredible people in virtually every industry. In my experience, Ivey alumni are always happy to connect with me.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I’ve been blessed with a pretty incredible career, from working with Broadway actors, to conducting shows at some of Canada’s biggest theatres. It’s hard to hold up just one moment as “biggest”, but I will say something that sticks with me is one of the last gigs I got to do before the pandemic hit – playing keys for a PBS special.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far: When I was accepted into Ivey, I was honored to be named a ROMBA (Reaching Out MBA) fellow. ROMBA is an organization supports and gives opportunities to MBA students in the LGBTQ+ community. Apart from the generous scholarship, ROMBA provides many different events and opportunities to connect with fellow LGTBQ+ members around the world.

Where is your favorite hang-out in London (Ontario)? Why do you (or your classmates) gravitate there? If it’s a good day, Barneys. If it’s a great day, Jacks. Those dollar beers at Jacks were the beginning of many friendships.

What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you enjoyed and would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why? Unprecedented is a book that was curated and edited by Steve Mayer and Andrew Willis. It’s a collection of first-person stories written by the CEOs of 29 of Canada’s biggest companies looking at how they navigated the COVID-19 pandemic. I think it’s chock full of valuable insight on how to manage the unforeseeable from people who are at the top of their game.

What did you do during the application process that enabled you to get accepted into Ivey? From very early on, Ivey pairs you with a recruiter who guides you through the process. I was fortunate enough to have an amazing recruiter who kept in regular communication with me. She encouraged me to go to different events, meet and greets with past alumni, and a virtual case-based class with one of the Ivey profs. I think asking questions and attending these events really helped me understand Ivey’s core values and strengths, which helped me authentically articulate why I wanted to do my MBA at Ivey and what value I believed I could bring to my classmates if I was accepted.


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