Meet the MBA Class of 2025: Ishita Singhal, UC Riverside

Ishita Singhal

“I lead with passion and am led by curiosity.”

Hometown: Hyderabad, Telangana, India

Fun Fact About Yourself: I bake healthy treats! During the COVID-19 pandemic, when we all tried leading a healthy lifestyle, I was unwilling to compromise on my love for baking. So, I experimented with healthier ingredients that made equally tasty treats, and I was extremely successful!

Undergraduate School and Major: Symbiosis Centre for Media and Communication, marketing communication

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Deloitte India, human resources analyst

What word best describes the UC Riverside MBA students and alumni you’ve met so far?
Passionate. My first real impression of UC Riverside was based on my in-person interaction with someone from the Graduate Admissions team and his passion about the school came through with every piece of information he shared. After accepting my offer from UCR, I began interacting with more members of the staff, students, and alumni and observed how passionate they all were about what they do, where they are, and how they want to help you succeed. It truly fuels me and makes me want to do better and give back.

Aside from classmates, what was the key part of UC Riverside’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you?
Filtering through the large pool of prospective colleges, I was certain about studying at a university that would help inculcate a mindset of excellence and innovation, provide global perspectives, and hone my leadership skills. The culmination of these elements builds leaders who possess a blend of analytical, creative, and social intelligence skills. Today’s interlinked challenges in the changing business landscapes demand exactly such leaders, and this kind of preparation is what I found at UCR.

The STEM-designation also enables me to navigate complicated business problems using data and finding compelling solutions with authority, while staying committed to my cause of growing better businesses. It will fine-tune my creative approach to marketing and help me provide qualitative solutions supported by quantitative facts to create measurable impact.

The emphasis on hands-on problem solving, intimate knowledge of industry needs and practices, and a multidimensional approach will equip me with a holistic approach toward solving business problems through marketing and provide me with a competitive advantage.

What course, club or activity have you enjoyed the most so far at UC Riverside?
While my courses officially started in fall 2023, my journey with UC Riverside started months ago through the Summer with UCR and Business Ready programs. The curated sessions gave me a glimpse into life at UCR, what to expect, how to be more prepared, and most importantly, how to be business ready. It was a much-needed prelude for me as I transition back into school after working for more than three years. It made me feel comfortable and even more excited to start fall classes.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far:
Leading with curiosity and a problem-solving mindset, I was able to strategize an effective brand launch plan and communication strategies for a health-tech startup in my first job as an assistant manager at a branding firm in India. While curating marketing content, my focus was to create a brand campaign that reflected customer insights and translated into successful outcomes for the client. I created sticky messages by combining best practices with a little ingenuity. The campaign was based on well researched data and tailored to communicate to doctors as a target audience. I knew the campaigns were working well when the doctors started interacting with the content. It helped amplify the positioning of the brand and set the stage for in-person conversations with the target audience and focus group discussions, and it paved the way for concentrated and customized sales efforts. The challenging domain and audience made this success an accomplishment.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far:
I am the first in my family to be studying outside India, and getting here has been a long journey. Being a part of a highly reputed university makes it worth the struggles, and I am hopeful about what my MBA life has in store for me.

What is your class’s favorite hangout away from school? Why do you gather there?
The campus is always alive and buzzing with energy, so when I go out, I like to change the pace a little by hitting the beach with my friends. We play games, walk along the coast, eat hot dogs, and toast s’mores. The rhythmic waves and sounds of happiness make it a wholesome outing!

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation?
“Conscious consumerism” is gaining steam, and it is my personal passion to make social responsibility a part of an organization’s DNA to drive societal and environmental change through marketing. With my prior education and experience in advertising and branding, an MBA will be a career accelerator in my journey to build successful brands and contribute to a more holistic framework of marketing—one that creates consciousness and sustainability.
I want to lead a culture of responsible marketing. I aim to harness the trifecta of brand reach, marketing—a weapon of influence—and social responsibility to build a better society. Ethical businesses can use the power of content and marketing practices to drive socio-economic change.

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