Meet the MBA Class of 2024: Rachel Tuskes, Indiana University (Kelley)

Rachel Tuskes

Indiana University, Kelley School of Business

“A part-time storyteller fueled by caffeine, carbs, and curiosity.”

Hometown: Chagrin Falls, OH

Fun Fact About Yourself: I can throw my voice to sound like Alvin and the Chipmunks!  I discovered this ability when I was in middle school and even showcased it during a talent show.

Undergraduate School and Major: The Ohio State University, English (Creative Writing) and French

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Ohio Northern University – Claude W. Pettit College of Law, Law Admissions Counselor

In the second half of the year, you will be completing an Academy devoted to areas like Marketing, Finance, Operations, Digital Enterprises and more. Which Academy interests you the most and why? I was drawn to the Consumer Marketing Academy (CMA) because I’m interested in what influences individuals’ decision-making in the marketplace and in creating a personalized customer experience.  The Academies were a strong factor in my decision to attend Kelley because of the way they serve to bridge conceptual learning with practical application. I’m especially looking forward to site visits with the CMA this fall to see what consumer marketing looks like in different companies and to gain real-world experience through a consulting project this spring!

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Indiana Kelley’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? While there were many factors that led to my final decision, one thing about Kelley’s programming that resonated with me was their emphasis on a holistic and career-oriented approach to the MBA journey. Kelley’s distinguished Graduate Career Services (GCS) has a wide variety of resources and programs in place designed to educate the whole person to become a stronger business leader, starting with Me, Inc in the summer before our first semester. I knew that, by coming to Kelley, I would be setting myself up for success by developing the hard skills, the soft skills, and the networking connections to pivot into a new role as a dynamic marketing professional.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at Indiana Kelley?  I’m excited to participate in the Global Business and Social Enterprise (GLOBASE) Program. My previous experience abroad in France through TAPIF provided me with an incredible opportunity to immerse myself in the French language, share my culture and language with a great group of kids, and forge friendships with people from all around the world. I’m excited to continue broadening my intercultural business competencies and to collaborate on a project that will create a positive social impact.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I ran our Office of Law Admissions during a critical period when my director was out on FMLA. When I took the lead in mid-August, it was a high-stress stage of the admissions cycle, and my team was underprepared and understaffed. We managed and learning along the way until early September, when an unexpected situation arose with our transition to a new application management system. None of our existing reports nor emails had converted from the old system – and we had only three weeks until we were scheduled to release our 2021 application.  The skills required to solve our integration issues were beyond my capabilities, and technical support was lacking from our service providers. I persevered with the support of my team, gaining technical proficiency in the new system and resolved all key issues ahead of our application release date.  My team and I came out of this experience with greater solidarity and confidence in the face of new challenges, and I grew into a better manager and a stronger communicator.

What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why?  From my work as a law school admissions counselor, I noticed something important. Candidates who were more informed about the admissions process and who sought constructive feedback before finalizing their application often received more favorable results. For this reason, I strongly recommend the Clear Admit MBA Admissions Podcast if you’re thinking about applying to an MBA program. Hosts Graham and Alex will review a handful of applicant profiles each week and provide listeners with their insights into each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses. Clear Admit also provides resources to explore MBA programs, prepare your application, gain a clearer understanding of the admissions process, and a forum to find camaraderie with other prospective MBA applicants.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Indiana Kelley’s MBA program? While doing your research, applying early, and getting to know the campus community are all great steps, I also wanted to touch on the importance of self-reflection throughout the application process. A clear, authentic representation of who you are as a person will be a strong asset in an interview and on paper as you’re writing your application essays. Think about who you are: your strengths, weaknesses, values, passions; and think about what you’ve learned throughout your professional career while working as part of a team. This type of reflection goes beyond the basics of establishing your career trajectory and developing an understanding about how Kelley can help you get where you want to be. You’ll make the most out of the application process and ultimately out of your MBA program if you engage fully in this process of self-reflection and personal growth.


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