Prospective Students Learn about Yale SOM Community at Explore Diversity
Each fall, scores of prospective students travel to Yale SOM for Explore Diversity, a unique series of events that provides an in-depth look into the Yale MBA program. Over the two days of programming, attendees sit in on a mock class, listen to alumni talk about their experiences, learn about career opportunities for SOM students, and meet current students and faculty.
This year, prospective students arrived on campus on November 7; they participated in an admissions presentation, a panel with current students discussing life at SOM, heard a welcome address from Dean Sharon Oster, and a cocktail reception with faculty and students. During her talk, Oster explained the schoolís mission to educate leaders for business and society and stressed how important diversity is in accomplishing it. "Embracing diversity isnít an add-on for us," she said. "Itís central to our education process."
Osterís talk was followed by an alumni panel, which showcased recent SOM alums including Paul Holzer '09, Dr. Bobby Ndu '07, Amanda de Zutter '06, Ivy Washington '09, Jonathan Lehr '09, Tomasz Matwijow '09, and Courtney Williams '10.
Explore Diversity is designed to provide prospective students a compact, but full view of life at SOM. A key part of this is the informal activities on the evening between the first and second days. Current students and faculty go out to dinner with attendees, and later give them a sampling of New Havenís nightlife. Shyam Sunder, James L. Frank Professor of Accounting, Economics, and Finance, went to dinner with four candidates ó an attorney based in Atlanta, a marketer for a Kenyan coffee enterprise, a New York-based consultant, and a Chinese college student ó and came away impressed. "It was such a pleasure to converse with them," he said.
Claire Ruud '12, who was on the student life panel, had a similar experience. The evening included a visit to a downtown tavern, where a group of current and prospective students talked about life at SOM and the significance of an MBA education. "We launched into an extremely dynamic conversation about leadership," she said.
On the second day of Explore Diversity, attendees listened to a presentation from the Career Development Office; got a feel for the classroom experience via a mock session taught by Rodrigo Canales, assistant professor of organizational behavior; sat through a presentation on the Yale integrated MBA curriculum; and had the opportunity to tour the Yale University campus.
Patricio Gonzalez '11, who participated in the student life panel, said that Explore Diversity gave the candidates a real feel not just for the academic side of the school, but its community. "All of us did our best to give them an idea of how our experience at Yale SOM has been so far," he said. "It was very rewarding that many prospectives reached out to us to talk about how they liked our community and that they canít wait to be part of it. Our community is one of the best assets Yale SOM offers and Iím glad the event was able to paint a real picture of it."
Chris Grey, associate director of admissions and student services, said the Admissions Office has already heard from several prospective students who said Explore Diversity solidified Yale SOM as their first choice. "Our aim with Explore Diversity was to expose prospective applicants to Yale SOM's learning and social environments, career resources, and the MBA application process, while highlighting the many aspects of diversity at Yale SOM that makes our MBA program and community unique," he said. "The initial responses thus far have given us the impression that we accomplished this goal."