The highest starting salaries and bonuses in more than eight years. A record number of international students offered U.S.-based positions. More new employers making offers than ever before. Despite the pandemic and an ever-shifting employment landscape, the Babson MBA Class of 2021 had a banner year.
Babson MBA graduates landed positions across a variety of industry sectors, including technology (20%), financial services (20%), consumer packaged goods/retail (16%), and consulting (11%). Total compensation across all sectors was up almost 19% from 2020, and 33 hiring companies were new to Babson this year. Almost half (47%) of Babson’s international MBA graduates accepted positions in the United States, the highest percentage in the history of Babson’s MBA program.
Why did Babson’s MBA Class of 2021 experience such unprecedented success? We caught up with several recent graduates to learn more about their job-search experience through Babson’s Graduate Center for Career Development (CCD), and the value of a Babson MBA.
Describe your partnership experience with Babson’s CCD.
Rachel Zelcer MBA’21, consultant, Syneos Health: “I started working with CCD almost immediately upon starting my MBA. I was nervous about the job hunt, mostly because I wasn’t sure what I was looking for or how to tell my story. Working with CCD, I was able to identify my career goals, pinpoint what I was looking for from an employer, develop my professional story, and, when the time came, discuss job offers and even negotiation tactics.”
Karan Savani MBA’21, product manager, supplier experience, Wayfair: “CCD helped me revamp my résumé, but more importantly helped identify opportunities where I could improve as a human, classmate, and teammate to the people around me. Developing the idea and intent for empathy, radical candor, genuine appreciation for diversity and differing perspectives were my biggest wins from the partnership. I practice and apply these daily at work and otherwise.”
“CCD helped me revamp my résumé, but more importantly helped identify opportunities where I could improve as a human, classmate, and teammate to the people around me.”
Karan Savani MBA'21
Rishabh Patawari MBA’21, investment banking associate, Progress Partners: “Babson CCD was a massive help during my journey at Babson. I started early in the job-search process and regularly kept in touch with the CCD team. The meetings were not just about talking about companies or the interview process, it was also about understanding my weaknesses, my strengths, and industry expectations of an MBA candidate.”
Have you tapped into the Babson alumni network?
Issa Qawasmi MBA’21, senior associate, deal advisory & strategy, KPMG: “I reached out to many Babson alumni in the mergers and acquisitions space, and I am still in contact with some of them. I also reached out to a Babson alumnus at KPMG; it was beneficial to understand the culture and learn more about the department and its service offerings before my interview.”
C. Jacob Shotmeyer MBA’21, development manager, Trinsic Residential Group: “As soon as my wife and I solidified our plans to move to South Florida, I reached out to both the CCD and the Babson Miami campus. They connected me with local alumni who were so helpful as we worked through all of the logistics of a big move. Moving to a completely new place can be a daunting task, but the Babson family has helped make South Florida feel like home.”
Patawari: “Absolutely! Babson has a wonderful alumni network and I have benefited a lot from the guidance of Babson alumni. I reached out via LinkedIn to learn about their experiences and understand what helped them succeed during the job-search process. Most of them were very happy to guide me because they also went through a similar process during their time at Babson.”
Describe your experience as an international student in the job-search process. Why did your résumé stand out?
Vaidehi Tembhekar MBA’21, new market launch manager at Shef: “A job search as an international student is definitely challenging. What made my résumé stand out were the internships I found through networking with Babson alumni. I had the opportunity to interview Jamie Siminoff ’99, H’21, the founder of Ring, and Gautam Gupta ‘07, a partner at 13 Ventures, for my Babson Built podcast and was able to leverage these connections. I reached out to Jamie directly and secured a summer internship with Amazon and then a part-time position during my second year. My current position came through Gautam Gupta, who introduced me to the founders of Shef. So all my opportunities at Babson and after Babson have really been through networking!”
Qawasmi: “Visa sponsorship was my biggest challenge. However, what helped me in my search process is that I was able to truly understand what skills were needed to succeed in the job I was targeting and identify some gaps in my skill set. I worked on an action plan to be as close as possible to be an ideal candidate. The good news is currently the market looks different than a year ago; I see a spike in demand for skilled people, and employers are more open to sponsorship if the candidate is a good fit for the job.”
How would you describe the value of a Babson MBA?
Justin Deckert MBA’21, chief of staff, BlueIO: “The diversity and entrepreneurial focus of the Babson MBA has allowed me to be a super generalist and apply a vast set of skills to a variety of scenarios. Taking classes such as Impact Investing, Entrepreneurial Finance, and New Venture Creation helped sharpen my ability to operate and succeed in a number of environments.”
Zelcer: “Everyone will find something different to value from their Babson MBA that speaks to their experience. For me, the community, support, and hands-on learning opportunities are what I value most from my Babson MBA.”
Savani: “The professors are the best I have learned from. Babson provides a great deal of tools to succeed with virtually anything one chooses. Babson stands apart with an ET&A (Entrepreneurial Thought & Action) mindset, which makes this the best place to truly explore and discover.”
Tembhekar: “The value of the Babson MBA is unmatched. I have some of the most incredible memories of my life at Babson and am fortunate to say I’ve met people from different countries and different backgrounds. Through Babson, I had access to all of these mentors and I have access to that network for my entire life. I don’t think I would be in the place I am in right now without Babson or without my Babson degree.”
“I don’t think I would be in the place I am in right now without Babson or without my Babson degree.”
Vaidehi Tembhekar MBA'21
Do you have any advice for current MBA students?
Patawari: “Leverage the resources you have around you. Babson has so much to offer students: mentorship, exposure to different cultures, experienced professors, a great alumni network, support staff, and a wonderful entrepreneurial culture.”
Deckert: “Treat your Babson MBA like an a la carte sushi menu. You get to pick and choose whatever you want to make a great meal. Try everything, especially novel things as it is the only way you can learn whether it’s something you might enjoy.”
Tembhekar: “Babson gives you the chance to learn from so many great people, whether it’s in the Lewis Institute or the Blank Center, by being part of clubs, or by meeting people through CCD. We’re so lucky at Babson to be surrounded by talented people from all corners of the world who bring different perspectives to a room. Leverage that and build your network. Building those relationships is really important and it’s much harder to do once you get into the real world.”
Savani: “Capitalize on every opportunity and take courses you are truly curious about. Get to know your classmates and professors and make good friends. Yes, it is important to prepare for internships and your job search, but it is even more important to enjoy and absorb every minute you spend in school. Live for the moment and capitalize on it.”
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