Meet the MBA Class of 2025: Pei-Hua Yu, University of Michigan (Ross)

Pei-Hua Yu

University of Michigan, Ross School of Business

“Ex-journalist covering the clean energy transition and China’s business relations with the developing world.”

Hometown: Hsinchu County, Taiwan

Fun Fact About Yourself: One day at the age of 6, having read and checked up on all my picture books, I got upset that most of the stories “were fake.” I turned to the set of children’s encyclopedias and decided to look only for books that told “authentic stories.” This was the moment I discovered my love for truth-finding.

Undergraduate School and Major:

The University of Hong Kong – Bachelor of Arts – Major in History, Minor in Journalism

The University of Hong Kong – Master of Journalism

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Contributing Writer, The People’s Map of Global China

Michigan Ross is best known for experiential learning programming like MAP, Living Business Leadership Experience, and the Leadership Crisis Challenge. What experiential program interests you the most? The +Impact Studio Course interests me the most. Throughout my career, I have constantly sought out methods to transform truth and knowledge into greater real-world impacts. I am excited about elevating my design and communication skills by collaborating with graduate students from different disciplines, as well as faculties and business owners.

I am particularly keen on advising businesses on aligning their activities with various sustainable development goals. My experience in covering business-civil society relations in frontier and emerging markets and strong research skills will be highly beneficial for the project.

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of Michigan Rosss MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? Tracing China’s energy infrastructure in Global South countries showed me the private sector’s enormous power to transform lives and affect the environment. My goal for business school is to better understand the corporate world and help companies do business responsibly. I do believe that the changes essential to a greener and more inclusive future we want can be driven by businesses. Thus, I looked for MBA programs with a substantive focus on the intersection of business and sustainability.

Ross easily stood out with its Erb Institute, Business and Sustainability Concentration, along with a diverse offering of courses, experiential learning programs, and clubs in this respect. Additionally, through LinkedIn searches, I found the activities and projects of many students and alumni participated speak to me. An in-depth coffee chat with an MBA2 pursuing a career in renewable energy further demonstrated the offering as well as the collaborative spirit Ross advertises. I accepted the offer quickly, knowing that I would thrive in this supportive community.

What course, club, or activity excites you the most at Michigan Ross? The Climate Venture Fund excites me the most at Michigan Ross. As a journalist, I reported on the impacts of a given investment project or news event mainly by interviewing people and examining data of faits accomplis. Nonetheless, the climate transition, which I have been focusing on and am passionate about, is also about what futures the present people are opting for. I look forward to enriching my skillset to evaluate impacts and future potentials, advance my understanding of the venture capital ecosystem, and forge ties with students and entrepreneurs who care deeply about building a greener future of the globe by participating in the fund.

When you think of the Michigan Ross MBA program, what is the first word that comes to mind? Why? Collaborative!

After receiving an invitation to interview with Ross, I was stunned that the Taiwan Business Association (TBA) assigned an interview buddy to me. My buddy took one hour to help me adjust my narratives for a couple of interview questions and answer my burning questions about MBA careers. The vibe of the student events I attended before and after receiving the offer was extremely supportive, too. The two Ross students I had coffee chats with continued to offer advice on my relocation to Ann Arbor. Two weeks into Ann Arbor, I feel a strong sense of belonging in the MBA community. The faculty members and fellow students I have met are all supportive and open-minded. I am highly thankful for what the Ross community has already offered, and I can’t wait to contribute more.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: I became an independent journalist writing for both international and Chinese readerships to broaden the reach of my work. I experienced a different relationship with news outlets as I had to negotiate terms of collaboration on my own. I learned to actively manage my editors and identify niche areas to maximize my reporting impact.

I advanced global discussions of China’s overseas investment and Southeast Asia by adding depth and nuances. First, I contributed my insights into China-Myanmar relations – including perspectives that were previously seldom discussed internationally – as the first writer of The People’s Map of Global China. Furthermore, I developed a reporting style featuring diverse voices from Chinese and host country stakeholders, discussions of energy technology alternatives, and a systemic view of climate and other development goals.

I succeeded in getting the stories of Chinese enterprises published internationally (mainly via the South China Morning Post) and amplifying the voices of Southeast Asian civil society members in Chinese media, such as Phoenix Weekly and Caijing Magazine. My reportage was recognized by journalism prizes (including the Vivian Wu Journalism Excellence Award in International Reporting, one of the three major journalism prizes in Taiwan, in 2021) and circulated by industry insiders. It has also helped scholars and fellow journalists further their work.

I was thrilled to see how sharing the truths and working across different outlets engendered greater impacts.

What do you hope to do after graduation (at this point)? My reporting demonstrated to me a rapid, just transition to a prosperous, green future in many of the world’s most climate-vulnerable countries is impeded by a lack of finance, technology, and data-driven insights. In the short term, I aspire to help shape the fledging sustainability industry by joining the climate practice of a leading consulting firm. This – along with Ross’ supportive community – will lay the foundation for my long-term goal to create a specialized consulting firm using data science and evidence-based insights to advise climate and energy transitions in frontier and emerging markets.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into Michigan Ross’s MBA program? I can share how to make the most out of the application process, a soul-searching journey with the potential to transform one’s life.

  1. Get thankful for what you already have. People seek to pursue an MBA as they are more or less dissatisfied with something in their current career, a circumstance that can lead to emotional downward spirals. Simply shifting your view on the world outside can make a huge difference.
  2. Find your community, and take advice only from select people who are supportive and credible. The application process involves a lot of vulnerability, and you don’t want to waste energy by following advice that leads you to a wrong direction. Building a small group of “success buddies” and finding a proper echoing board — someone who is really familiar with the MBA world — can be very helpful.
  3. Speak the truth, and be who you are. From my perspective, integrity — being consistent with your intent, behaviors, and words — is the most powerful strategy for an MBA application and to live a meaningful life.

As long as you understand who you are and live who you are, the option best for you will naturally come to you, whether it’s a Ross offer or something else.


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