Category: MBA

Class of 2021 Spotlight: Andrew Datu and Shruti Mishra

Next up in our Class of 2021 Spotlight series are Andrew Datu and Shruti Mishra, MBA graduates in the Class of 2021:

Andrew Datu ’21S (MBA)

Where are you headed after graduation?
I’m headed to New Jersey for a marketing manager role at Verizon.

What was your favorite class and why?
My favorite class was easily Professor Mitch Lovett’s Advanced Market Strategy course. We simulated running a company and delegating roles, and we then dissected the simulated data to inform our decisions against other companies.

If you could use three words to describe your MBA experience, what would they be?
Collaborative, challenging, and self-driven.

What have you learned that will help you most in your new role?
The most important thing I learned is to trust my own decisions. Throughout my student experience, I’ve had to write reports, do my research, provide the evidence, solicit opinions, and then synthesize my findings into a digestible conclusion. I’ve learned to value my insights and ability to add value to my teams and organizations.

What advice do you have for prospective Simon students?
Visit different campuses, talk to students from different schools, and ensure that the curriculum and opportunities provided at those schools are in line with your goals. You’ll know what fits when you find it. 


Shruti Mishra ’21S (MBA)

Where are you headed after graduation?
I’m joining HP Inc.’s Strategy and Business Development unit in Houston, Texas. As a part of the Digital Transformations team, I’ll be identifying optimization opportunities within HP’s Go to Market processes and leading the implementations of machine learning-based solutions.

What was your favorite class and why?
I’m split between Managing Digital Products and Platforms taught by Professor Ravi Mantena and Digital Business Strategy taught by Professor Roy Jones. Both the classes were very engaging and informative, and I came out having learned things about business practices that are definitely going to help me in in my current role.

If you could use three words to describe your MBA experience, what would they be?
Unpredictable, challenging, and rewarding.

What have you learned that will help you most in your new role?
Simon’s focus on analytics helped me develop a very strong set of skills that I was able to utilize during my internship, and I believe these will also come in handy for my full-time role. Also, the compassion and generosity I’ve experienced during my time here has made me a better person, and I think that will help distinguish me from my peers more than any other skills.

What advice do you have for prospective Simon students?
Work hard, remain true to your goal, and don’t be afraid to take chances.

Women in Marketing: Alia Tabet ’09S (MBA)

Earlier this year, the Simon Admissions team and several student groups co-hosted a virtual moderated Q&A with MBA alumna Alia Tabet, former senior director of marketing for NFL Media.

Alia spent an hour chatting with Jenna Callan ’21S (MBA), the 2020–2021 president of Forté and vice president of alumni relations for the Simon Marketing Association, discussing her career path since she left Simon, how the skills she learned during her MBA program have helped her advance to and succeed in each role, and her insights on being a woman business leader in the sports marketing industry.

Below is an excerpt from the conversation, in which Alia discusses her “special sauce” that has helped her become a marketing executive:

Alia also shared her take on the importance of career coaching, as well as who she feels most impacted her leadership style in other excerpts.

The audience of prospective, admitted, and current Simon students benefitted from her expertise and perspective—we are so grateful to Alia and all our alumni who generously give their time to mentor and advise our students!

Class of 2021 Spotlight: Kitenge Ngongo and Jenna Callan

In the coming weeks, we will be highlighting a few members of our graduating class so prospective students can “meet” them and get a sense of where some of our recent graduates are heading.

We wish the very best of luck to all our graduates—the newest members of our alumni network. Don’t forget to keep in touch with your Simon family!

Kitenge Ngongo ’21S (MBA)

Where are you headed after graduation?  
Thermo Fisher Scientific in the General Leadership Development Program (GM track). I will be rotating through three functions in the next two years to gain exposure to the company and have an impact as I look to transition into a general manager role.

What was your favorite class and why?
Business Modeling with Professor Ravi Mantena. I loved being challenged and stretched with relevant business problems for seven weeks while collaborating with teammates. The challenges we faced as a team were invaluable.

If you could use a few words to describe your MBA experience, what would they be?
Relentless and rewarding.

What have you learned that will help you most in your new role?
Data analytics, particularly as it relates to making decisions using data.

What is your favorite Simon memory?
My favorite Simon memory is the house we built in Dutchtown with Habitat for Humanity as a part of Orientation week. It was awesome to partake in such a gratifying endeavor and build connections with new classmates at the same time.

What advice do you have for prospective Simon students?
Cast aside the “not having income for two years” worry. I personally used it as an excuse for way too long. The investment in yourself is 100% worth the sacrifice! And it goes very quickly! Also, visit campus—it will enlighten you so much as to whether Simon is the right fit for you.


Jenna Callan ’21S (MBA)

Where are you headed after graduation?
I am headed to Cognizant as a senior consultant in the Retail, Consumer Goods, Travel, and Hospitality Group.

What was your favorite class and why?
This is a ridiculously hard question because I could list almost every class I took—but Advanced Marketing Strategy with Mitch Lovett and Neal Burns not only pushed me to solve ambiguous problems quickly and creatively, but it also was a ton of fun! Also, anything Ravi Mantena or Jeanine Miklos-Thal teach are musts, simply because of their teaching style and personalities.

If you could use three words to describe your MBA experience, what would they be?
Community, challenging, and rewarding.

What have you learned that will help you most in your new role?
Simon gave me an entirely new way to look at problems. I am more analytical in my approach, more creative in my solutions, and more understanding of those around me—including the differing work styles and backgrounds we each bring to the table.

What is your favorite Simon memory?
The Forté Conference and Fall Ball 2019 are tied in my mind, but getting to hug my fellow vaccinated classmates for the first time in over a year during Grad Week was quite incredible!

What advice do you have for admitted Simon students?
Have faith in yourself. You were admitted for a reason and you are more than capable of achieving great things here! Remember your “why” for business school and let that guide you.

Simon Students Make a Positive Impact in the Rochester Community

Social impact is a key part of our Simon culture. Students pursue campus leadership opportunities to make a difference not only in our business school community but also in Rochester, the city we call home. 

To celebrate Earth Day this year, Simon students volunteered at several local organizations, sprucing up community gardens and even building a tiny library where local residents can pick up something new to read and leave books they would like to share with others. 

But our commitment to social impact goes way beyond Earth Day. During the 2020–2021 academic year, the Graduate Business Council and Net Impact created the Simon Impact Initiative, which culminated with a Net Impact award ceremony. To be eligible to win, Simon clubs were posed the following challenges:

  1. Have an impact—both with the club’s voice and its budget.
  2. Document the impact consistency throughout the year.
  3. Communicate that impact effectively in a way that demonstrates value to the club’s stakeholders.

After submitting both a metrics report and white paper to three committees consisting of faculty, alumni, and staff, Simon Volunteers won the social club category, Simon Black Student Alliance won the DEI club category, and the Simon School Venture Fund won the professional club category. Each winning club received additional budget to be used for impact-focused programming next year. We are so proud of our student leaders’ hard work and dedication to making a difference.

Here’s a look at the Simon Impact Initiative by the numbers:

  • 132 impact events held
  • 740 hours volunteered
  • 4,015 people engaged
  • $66,764 donated to or invested in community initiatives

Learn more about the Simon Impact Initiative in this video created by Andrew Datu ’21S (MBA):

If you’re looking to take the first step toward your future career while having a lasting impact on your business school and local community, you belong at Simon.

We are still accepting MBA applications for 2021 entry on a space-available basis and prospective students interested in our full-time MS programs—Accountancy, Business Analytics, Finance, and Marketing Analytics—can apply through June 15 to begin their studies this year. Better yet: our $90 application fee is waived for all 2021 applicants!

Contact admissions@simon.rochester.edu to discuss your candidacy.