Meet the MBA Class of 2025: Keyon C. Powell, Carnegie Mellon (Tepper)

Keyon C. Powell

Carnegie Mellon University, Tepper School of Business

“A compassionate and driven leader, who loves to collaborate with people from different cultures.”

Hometown: Wilmington, Delaware

Fun Fact About Yourself: I’m an AvGeek (aviation geek). In my free time you can find me plane spotting and working on next steps to obtain a private pilot certificate.

Undergraduate School and Major: Delaware State University, Criminal Justice

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Deloitte Consulting, SAP Senior Consultant

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Carnegie Mellon’s MBA curriculum and programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Several aspects of Tepper’s curriculum and programing ultimately drew me into attending; however, the Accelerate Leadership Center (ALC) was the defining factor. Throughout my research and interactions with the community, there was an emphasis on leading with self-awareness and empathy to enable the intelligent future. Tepper’s approach to building upon a solid analytical foundation and a personalized development plan through the ALC is a game-changer in becoming a more well-rounded leader.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at Carnegie Mellon? There’s an abundance of active clubs to join and exciting courses offered at the Tepper business school. At the same time, you can take electives within the schools in the Carnegie Mellon network. Regarding activities, however, I’m excited to join Tepper’s “Friday Beers” tradition. Every Friday, members of the Tepper community convene in the master’s commons to culminate the end of the week with food and drinks. Connecting with classmates, faculty, and alums in this environment is a great way to foster community building.

The Tepper MBA is known for intensive one-on-one coaching and personal development. What area do you hope to strengthen during your two years in business school and why? One of the many reasons I fell in love with the Tepper MBA program is its intense focus on one-on-one coaching, specifically through the Accelerate Leadership Center (ALC). Having the opportunity to work with full-time coaches through a personalized approach to developing my executive presence through communication is a focus area I’d like to strengthen to be a generational leader for my organization.

The Tepper MBA is also known for being highly data-driven Why does the program’s focus on quantitative analysis and decision-making appeal to you? How have been able to leverage this approach in your career so far? Understanding and using data to drive decisions is a core skill needed in today’s evolving business environment. Throughout my research, touchpoints, and visits, I found Tepper to truly embody its focus on being forward-thinking when mastering advanced analytics while exploring emerging technologies. Thus far in my career, I have had the pleasure of sitting in the integration of business and technology to define complex client solutions. With Tepper’s focus, I look forward to strengthening my understanding in this area.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: For the past five years, I had the pleasure of driving impact for several clients and internally for my firm, which awarded me several professional accomplishments. However, my most profound achievement came this year when five analysts I mentored were promoted to consultant. Through our one-on-one professional touchpoints, technical system demonstrations, and casual coffee chats, I couldn’t be prouder of their matriculation.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Carnegie Mellon’s MBA program? One word comes to mind – reflection. I would say take the time to reflect on why an MBA, why now, and why you think your background makes you a strong fit for Tepper. Taking the time and effort to reflect on these questions will set you up for success when candidly sharing your story, what you could bring to the Tepper community, and your professional aspirations in the admissions process.

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