Student Profile: Making Connections
Sura Tilakawardane '13
Vice President, Student Government
With so many industries undergoing change today, people in my generation are going to have a lot of different types of jobs. I wanted an education that would help me become an adaptable and broadminded leader. I found it at Yale SOM.
The integrated curriculum is one of our strongest competitive advantages, because it covers all the components of what is needed to become a leader in the future. In the integrated curriculum we're always thinking about the broader picture and seeing how everything is connected. For example, with all the regulatory changes taking place today, you need to look at the societal aspects of a business problem. With technology impacting industries, you need to understand not only its competitive advantages but also what it's like to deal with technology issues from an employee standpoint inside an organization.
The skills I learned in the integrated curriculum really came into play during my internship. I worked in CNN's strategy department, on the digital team where a lot of the most exciting stuff is happening today. One project focused on how to grow a specific revenue stream that had been stagnating. It required me to look at the issue holistically and come up with a comprehensive strategy. So many of the concepts we study in the integrated curriculum came into play—data analysis, research, interacting with external partners and with internal employees, and making sure you understand the entire context of a problem. My supervisor at CNN really appreciated my ability to address complex problems and communicate solutions in a clear way.
Interviewed on September 12, 2012.