Meet the MBA Class of 2023: Stephanie Vetsch, IMD Business School

Stephanie Vetsch

IMD Business School

“Passionate engineer/outdoor enthusiast, aims to reshape how we consider impact on people & the planet.”

Hometown: Calgary, Canada

Fun Fact About Yourself: I have a fascination and adoration for air balloons. I’ve been in two air balloon rides in my life, once in Calgary, Canada and once in Cappadocia, Turkey where we flew above the Rose Valley.

Undergraduate School and Major: Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, Calgary, Canada

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Whitefox Technologies – Process and Field Engineer

What has been the best part of being in a small class with this group of classmates, known for their talent and versatility? The best part about being in a small class is getting to know everyone on a much more personal level and thereby getting so much support from those in my cohort. I’ve been able to learn a lot from the previous experiences of my classmates, as well as getting to know them outside of the class while travelling or at the pub. They’ve been able to support me on many aspects in my personal development and have given me valuable feedback and encouragement.

Aside from classmates, what part of IMD’s MBA programming led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? The big appeal was the focus on sustainability, as I wanted to continue my career in the renewable energy and sustainability space. Secondly, the small cohort size was very important for me, as I wanted to make meaningful connections with my classmates and not feel like a generic member of the class.  Thirdly, as an avid skier and outdoor sports lover, my dream was always to live in Switzerland, the home of the Swiss Alps.

IMD is known for academic rigor. What is one strategy you used that would help a future IMD MBA better adapt to the workload early on? I believe in not sweating the small stuff. I strive to be pragmatic about what needs to be accomplished and setting times to finish small goals one at a time. To avoid getting overwhelmed, I practice yoga, go for runs and get lots of sleep, which all help me to manage the stress.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I received my designation as a Professional Engineer in Canada which represents “the highest standards of engineering knowledge, experience and professionalism in the country.” My qualification and experience allowed me to lead and coordinate a plant commissioning of a brand-new renewable fuel technology. I provided training and onsite start-up support for 50+ operators and plant managers and delivered the project with 200M BTU/year energy savings.

Describe your biggest accomplishment at IMD so far: My biggest accomplishment at IMD so far has been making it to the finalist round of the IMD Venture Award, a grant of CHF 100,000 and mentorship given to the top MBA entrepreneur in our class to help grow and innovate new business ideas. I’ve always had the dream of starting my own business. Pushing myself to pitch a ski marketplace app and later pitching an AI digital transformation technology  within the energy sector was an opportunity I will never forget.

Where is your favorite hang-out in Lausanne? Why do you (and your classmates) gravitate there? Lacustre is a delightful venue within walking distance of the campus, known for its scrumptious oven-roasted pizza and a diverse selection of drinks. Nestled beautifully next to the water, it offers a picturesque setting. The DJ consistently plays catchy tunes, creating a lively atmosphere for dancing. The patio provides a perfect space for everyone to catch up, making it our go-to classic hangout spot.

What do you hope to do after graduation? I hope to work in project management and strategy in renewable energy companies. Should I win the venture award, I hope to start my own business after the MBA in data analytics and AI for renewable energy companies.

What has been your best memory at IMD thus far? One of my favourite memories was organizing a ski trip to Verbier with 20 of my classmates. I helped teach one of my classmates how to ski, and I still remember the joy he had on his face when he was able to ski down the slope next to the Swiss Alps. Sharing my passion for the outdoors, travelling, and socializing with other IMD classmates is a big highlight for me.

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