Seniors Named Poets & Quants Best and Brightest

Two Babson undergraduates were named the Best and Brightest Business Majors by Poets & Quants.

Each year, the publication honors undergraduates who “embody the spirit of their school, demonstrate the possibilities, and set the standard for classes to follow.” Centennial class members Adam Kershner ’19 and Leslie Parra ’19 were this year’s Babson honorees.

Adam Kershner ’19

A student-athlete and a Presidential scholar, Kershner came to Babson from Scottsdale, Arizona. In and out of the classroom, he found joy in becoming a member of the College’s close-knit community.

“I’ve developed a personal relationship with every one of my professors, College administrators, dining hall staff, athletics administrators, and staff beyond my own coaches, and with facilities workers,” he said. “None of that would have happened so easily elsewhere. Babson is a special place, and its size and structure gave me a rich college experience that I will never forget.”

Babson won’t forget him, either. Kershner has made his mark on campus, from leading the Swimming and Diving Team as captain in 2018–2019, to welcoming prospective students as an Admission Fellow, to teaching a Senior-Led Seminar, and much more.

“Adam’s excellence is contagious in the best of ways; he makes everyone around him better,” said Ian Lapp, Dean of the Undergraduate School. “He has been at the top of his class academically from start to finish and all along the way he has lifted others up through his work as a math tutor, a peer mentor in our flagship course Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship, and as a team leader on our swim team.”

After graduation, Kershner will join EY in its Transaction Advisory Services group. His advice for aspiring business students? Balance your course selection. “Part of why I enjoyed my business education so much was because of Babson’s well-rounded curriculum. While I was able to focus my studies in an area that interests me, I was also forced to continue exploring other areas of business, from the beginning of my freshman year and well into my senior year.”

Leslie Parra ‘19

A Posse scholar from the Bronx, N.Y., Parra ’19 told Poets & Quants she loves trying new activities in pursuit of what she calls her true gift in life.

It’s no surprise, then, that Parra found joy in her liberal arts courses. “While I entered Babson knowing that I wanted to seek  career opportunities in business, the classes that challenged me the most were outside my career choice,” she said. “The social science, history, and literary courses I’ve taken at Babson have allowed me to explore my interest in hobbies and topics beyond my future career.”

Outside of the classroom, some of those interests translated to leadership positions on campus, including serving as vice president of communications for O.N.E., the student chair for the Babson Black Affinity Network Conference, and a Habitat for Humanity volunteer, among others.

After Commencement this May, Parra will begin a career as a sales planning analyst at the Clorox Company.

Of all her accomplishments, what Babson moment makes Parra the most proud? Studying abroad in Denmark. “It was a transformative experience for me personally,” she says. “I learned so much about my social skills, my natural instincts, and my ability to adapt to drastically different environments in a way that I never thought I would.”

Her Posse mentor, Marjorie Feld, professor of History, told Poets & Quants that Parra has been an invaluable member of Babson’s Class of 2019. Said Feld, “She has taught me invaluable lessons about doing the right thing, about commitments and goal achievement. And, she modeled these lessons for her peers.”

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