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“Nearly Every Aspect of My Life Is Different for the Better”

Jennifer Obiyo (’19) reflects on her time at UCLA Anderson
Jennifer (Ojeh) Obiyo was one of the incoming Class of 2019 MBAs profiled in Poets & Quants in November 2017. With graduation from UCLA Anderson now just around the corner, Obiyo revisits some of the questions she was asked two years ago and reflects on what she's learned, how she's changed and what she anticipates the future to bring.

Q: How would you describe yourself in 15 words or fewer?

Curious, extroverted introvert with a contagious laugh, commitment to diverse representation and passion for marketing.

Q: How do you feel about the time you spent at Anderson? Was it all that you thought it would be when you first arrived?

To be honest, I never really understood what people meant when they said to me — as a prospective student — that business school would be a transformative experience. How exactly would I “transform”? In reflecting on my time at Anderson thus far, I finally get it. Nearly every aspect of my life is different for the better since coming to Anderson. I’m in awe of the classmates I now call friends, excited to embark on a new career I’m deeply passionate about, impressed by what I’ve learned both inside and out of the classroom, and am much more confident in my voice and who I’m becoming as a leader. In thinking about the specific people and experiences that have fueled my transformation, I could not be more grateful to have landed at UCLA Anderson.

Q: What advice would you give to future business school applicants, now that you’ve been through the program?

Since there is so much to do and get involved in at Anderson, I would advise future business school applicants to have a clear idea of what they want to get out of the program before stepping foot on campus. While it’s impossible to know every detail or opportunity that lies ahead, it’s important to home in on the types of experiences that would make business school a meaningful two years. Is participating in case competitions more valuable than assuming club leadership roles? Is time better spent pursuing an academic internship or going to Anderson Afternoons with friends? Although every decision won’t involve such dramatic trade-offs, having a strong internal compass can help future students optimize the things that are important to them and make the most of their time at Anderson.

Q: What’s next for you?

After Anderson, I’m looking forward to exploring a few entrepreneurial ideas before relocating to Seattle to return to Starbucks full time in August. I’ll be joining the company’s global retail product organization as a beverage category product manager.