Meet MIT Sloan’s MBA Class Of 2025

At MIT, they’re called Sloanies. They are the MBA students from the Sloan School of Management. Beyond Cambridge, Sloanie means something very different. And that distinction, ironically, follows the school acronym: MIT.


You might assume M stands for “Math.” After all, many people picture MIT classrooms with intricate formulas scrawled across long blackboards. In reality, M means Mens et Manus – “Mind and Hand” – the motto for MIT. Being a Sloanie involves more than poring over research and memorizing theories. Instead, it entails being a doer, stepping out of the classroom and making useful applications in the real world. At Sloan, learning is conducted hand-in-hand with purpose – a commitment to drive change, build communities, and formulate solutions. That’s one reason why Sloan combines experiential learning with an evidence-based approach. While Sloanies may forget their readings, they’ll always be able to fall back on the many times they practiced how to generate ideas from opportunities and produce results from process.

“MIT Sloan prioritizes building, designing, innovating, and getting your hands dirty,” explains first-year CC Obi-Gwacham. “I wanted to get a top-notch business education while graduating with the utmost confidence in my ability to start my own venture one day.”

That said, MIT Sloan has expanded its credo beyond mind and hand to include something else that truly matters to success, says Paolo Luciano Rivera, a ’23 grad. “Some of the soft-skill leadership classes have changed my life and there’s a world of other courses than just the nerdy ones. As an example, I’m also taking an Electronic Music Composition class…It is a totally new creative outlook…While there’s still a lot of emphasis on the Mind-Hand the Heart is more prevalent than ever.”


Known for excellence in engineering, information technology, and physical sciences, MIT has long been described as intense. Here, students juggle jam-packed schedules and endure unrelenting demands. While the MBA programming is rigorous, Sloanies are more imaginative than intense. They are self-starters who’ll simply invent what they can’t find themselves. Think of Sloanies as ideas people, always looking for the meaning, the edge, and the impact – the ones who don’t need to be told but simply make it happen. They’re proactive and resourceful, open-minded and unconventional, global-minded and future-centered. Most of all, Sloanies make a difference because they live and love their mission.

Sofie Netteberg, a McKinsey analyst who joined the Sloan MBA Class of 2025 this fall, describes her classmates as “nerdy, humble, and no-nonsense” – the kind of people who are “deeply passionate about at least five topics but doesn’t rush to talk about themselves.” Cameron Russell, a history major who became a lawyer, has been struck by how creative his Sloanie classmates are. And he would say the same about MIT as a whole too.

“There is an incredible array of success stories of MIT students leveraging the learning and platform provided by MIT in creative and unexpected ways. My favorite—especially given how messy some of my housemates have been over the years—is actually the Roomba, which was a venture created by MIT students in the 1990s!”

Aerial view from MIT Sloan


T stands for Technology, right? Before you roll out rockets and robots, you first need toughness – tenacity certainly – to overcome setbacks. That’s what sets Sloanies apart. You won’t find a Sloanie putting in the minimum. Instead, they go deep, go wide, go hard, and go big. And they’re the first to step up when they see a lack of structure or certainty. That may be why Sloanies gravitate to entrepreneurship, with MIT and greater Boston boasting a deep and diverse ecosystem, says ’25 candidate Swaraj Dharia.

“What truly resonated with me was witnessing current students embarking on new ventures in an environment where failure is embraced and reflected upon in an organized way. The supportive atmosphere at the Martin Trust Center for MIT Entrepreneurship and the Legatum Center has fostered an environment of innovation and risk-taking, which is crucial for successful ventures. Moreover, MIT Sloan’s certificate programs…breaks down new ventures into their core components—the nuts and bolts of starting a business—that equips students with practical skills essential for launching impactful companies. These versatile skills can seamlessly translate into various career paths beyond entrepreneurship.”


If you want to tag on a S for Sloan to the MIT formula, Spirited might fit well according to Leah Budson, a first-year who was previously a BCG consultant. “A former student told me that “Sloanies take their work seriously, but they don’t take themselves too seriously”, and that is exactly the environment I am looking for in a graduate school.”

Mind and Hand. Imaginative. Tough. Spirited too. That’s a Sloanie. When it comes to Sloan programming, the Class of 2025 would boil its appeal down to one word: Cutting edge.

“I wanted to attend a program where I could gain real-world experience designing or redesigning business processes for the future,” says Jake Daniels. ”With the plethora of MIT’s incredible talks about revolutionary technologies, entrepreneurial resources, and the emphasis on learning as a mind and hand endeavor, there’s a pervasive energy of creativity and possibility at Sloan..The program feels current, skill-focused and aimed at engaging with a changing world.”

MIT Sloan School of Management


Despite the larger university’s STEM centricity, the Sloan MBA class comes from a wide spectrum of backgrounds and industries. Daniels is a perfect example. At Northwestern University, he studied Radio, TV, and Film before landing at NBCUniversal, where he worked as the Drama Development Coordinator for Universal Television.

“It’s really lovely seeing audiences respond to television shows I’ve helped develop creatively,” Daniels explains. “My proudest moments, though, come from introducing my company (and some of the creators we work with) to emerging technologies that can help us realize stories in new, artist-supportive ways. I’ve been able to present these ideas to people I deeply admire, and I’ve been working with them to integrate new tools and ideas into everyday creative processes.”

Daniels isn’t the only member of the Class of 2025 to follow a colorful career path. After working as a senior consultant at Ernst & Young, Swaraj Dharia followed his passions into the public sector, joining the Government of India’s Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. Here, he was involved in carbon market implementation negotiation, along with helping his superiors push through Article 6 of the Paris Agreement. At McKinsey, Sofie Netteberg conducted research on the Future of Work that was presented by the company’s Chief People Officer at Davos. During her six years at Dropbox, Easlynn Lee’s role extended far beyond her social impact manager title.

“I launched our company’s global days of service, attended the UN General Assembly, and managed relationships with human rights organizations around the world. In the wake of 2020’s call for BIPOC equality, I led our efforts to empower nonprofits led by communities of color. The result was a fund for nonprofits paving the way in the racial justice movement, which raised over 1 million dollars. This is my biggest accomplishment to date; I was able to use my voice and realm of expertise to make a difference as well as pay an opportunity forward.”


Cameron Russell can list Blackstone among his legal clients. Notably, he was involved in the acquisition of VFS Global, which required him to learn about their operations and financials across over 100 countries. After interning at Merrill Lynch, Michael Akpawu moved over to Ghana’s Black Start Group to head up research. His big assignment: produce an in-depth report on MTN, Ghana’s largest telecom services operator.

“This research yielded remarkable results, with my estimated target price and total return on the company achieved in less than six months,” he explains. “This significantly boosted the firm’s visibility to both local and international investors. Equity trade revenue doubled as a result of this research. The report has since become a benchmark in the CFA Ghana local research challenge, where I now serve as an industry mentor to research participants. My combined experience from Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Black Star Group laid the groundwork for me to pivot into private equity, which I see as my long-term growth trajectory.”

In a university full of aspiring entrepreneurs, Jack O’Brien will certainly stick out. He worked as the CTO for, a startup that raised $19 million dollars in venture capital and was eventually sold after building a customer base of 5,000 companies. CC Obi-Gwacham led the operational processes for a startup that helped a myeloma drug earn FDA approval. At the same time, Hector G. Moncada served as a leader of one of America’s most distinguished establishments – the U.S. Army – eventually becoming Chief of Operations for the 2nd Brigade Combat Team.

“My biggest accomplishment in my career so far is having had the opportunity to lead soldiers as a Company Commander who was responsible for over 100 personnel. Nothing compares to knowing that I am accountable for the health and welfare of numerous individuals. While it can be a daunting task at times, it is also one of the most fun and rewarding times I’ve had in my life.”

MIT Sloan School of Management


In their personal lives, Haoting Pan was once a fashion model, while Easlynn Lee has been featured on a NASDAQ marquee in Times Square. On a mountain biking trek, Cameron Rusell was chased by a bear. After earning his undergraduate degree, Jack O’Brien spent some time off the grid.

“I renovated a full-sized school bus and lived in it for two months with a group of friends while visiting 13 national parks and 33 US states.”

What does the Class of 2025 intend to do after earning their MBAs? Cameron Russell jokes that he, like many of his classmates, are “still working this out.” That’s not to say they don’t have some ideas. Michael Akpawu for one, plans to continue growing the commercial sector in Ghana through consulting and research work – and maybe start a company. In contrast, Jake Daniels hopes to capitalize on the disruption buffeting the entertainment industry.

“As the newest wave of disruption hits the entertainment industry, I think there will be a desperate need to redesign many of the existing business models and workflows – I aim to be a part of that process. Tangibly, this either means a new, tech-focused version of a strategy role at a studio, or a hands-on role shaping new tools within a venture of my own or at an entertainment-facing startup.”

And Russell himself? The former lawyer is weighing strategy consulting…but doesn’t want to commit until he finishes exploring everything Sloan brings to the table. “Sloan offers an extraordinary (and almost paralyzing) range of opportunities, many of which I’d never considered or encountered. The breadth of these opportunities – spanning from start-ups to management positions at multinational companies to strategic roles at sports franchises – continues to amaze me and reaffirm my decision on coming to Sloan. I’m looking forward to exploring some of these as I start and progress through my MBA.”

Next Page: An Interview with MIT Sloan Administrators

Page 3: Profiles of 11 Members of the Class of 2025

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