Gurnoor Singh Gandhi
“Inquisitive with a high zest for life, who enjoys connecting with people and savoring life’s small joys.”
Hometown: Karnal, India
Fun Fact About Yourself: Being a seafarer, I have sailed to more than 2 dozen countries on 5 different continents.
Undergraduate School and Major: Indira Gandhi National Open University, Nautical Sciences
Most Recent Employer and Job Title: CARD – Centre for Advanced Research and Development (CARD) – a Non-profit.
Title: Digital Outreach Manager
How has the case method enriched your learning? Reading and analyzing cases help you think critically and use the limited information to decide and act – simulating the real business world. The case methodology not only taught me business principles experientially but also communication skills – how to articulate my thoughts persuasively and listen to others. Through case discussions in class, I understood how, in a boardroom environment, I can participate proactively and disagree gracefully, basing my analysis on the available data.
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? Apart from my awesome classmates and case-based learning, the inclusive and collaborative environment at Ivey was the biggest draw for me. I reached out to many B-schools, but found the Ivey admissions committee as well as the alumni the most helpful and responsive. As an international student, I got the feeling that they were all invested in my success from the get-go. Additionally, there is a strong sense of purpose behind the curriculum with sustainability principles embedded in our case studies, which was another major draw for me. The experiential learning opportunities like learning to pitch recommendations to the CEO, and self-exploratory opportunities like doing a weeklong expedition-based outdoor workshop in tough terrain and conditions with the Canadian special forces personnel also stood out for me.
Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Designing and launching the new website for CARD, the non-profit, is one of my most cherished accomplishments. The 4-month project that I led increased online traffic by 40x and gave CARD new capabilities like an online job posting board, feedback forms, and advanced online traffic monitoring. The website development and integration of different apps and widgets like chatbots and social media feeds was a transformative learning experience, a far cry from my sailing days, and helped the organization to showcase its impact emphatically across different developmental themes.
Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far: It has been the opportunity to co-lead the Ivey Social Impact committee with my fellow MBA friend Max Garcia and curate events and experiences for the cohort to give back to the community of London has been a wonderful experience. Ivey hosts the Social Impact days during the program, in which MBA students volunteer with local non-profits, sharing their time and expertise to advance social causes.
Where is your favorite hang-out in London (Ontario)? Why do you (or your classmates) gravitate there? My favorite hangout in London is Evergreen Park. I, along with my classmates, go there every week for a game of basketball. The park, surrounded by walking trails, is tranquility personified, a stark contrast to the high-octane action at the court. Playing basketball together helps us bond, relieve stress, as well as appreciate and value the health that we enjoy. Special memories and strong bonds have been forged at Evergreen Park.
What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you enjoyed and would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why? Reading the best-selling novel, The Goal, is part of our operations curriculum. I read The Goal during the term break. As part of experiential learning, I got the opportunity with my learning team to make and present an instructional animated video for my cohort. All the learning teams were given components of the book that we had to teach each other interactively and creatively. Teaching methods adopted by the MBA cohort included a game of family feud, a dating show, and a cup flipping competition to discuss and understand the various aspects of the book. I would highly recommend all MBA prospects read the book and understand the different elements and paradigms discussed in the book.
What did you do during the application process that enabled you to get accepted into Ivey? I think the most important aspect was the genuine curiosity about the Ivey experience. Guided by my curiosity, I leveraged online resources like Ivey admission podcasts and blogs on the Ivey website. The current students, as well as the international student ambassadors, were resources that I relied on a lot during my admission process. One MBA student even proofread my essays and a couple of others gave me interview preparation tips. I was very authentic in all my interactions, making sure that I was portraying my real best self. Once I touched base with the Ivey community and sought out help, the community ensured that I was successful. I would strongly suggest all MBA prospects be genuinely interested and reach out. You will be pleasantly surprised by the care and interest, the current students, and the admissions committee will show to you..