First Place (3x) and Flex from Houston: Meet Vishal Saheta ’17

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What is Flex like from Houston? And how about your wife flying to LA with you?

How does it feel to earn three first place finishes in case competitions during FEMBA?

What is FEMBA like during large layoffs at your company?

Vishal Saheta ’17 is in a brand new role as a Project Manager at Schulumberger (Fortune #287), and he answers these questions and more in this Drive Time podcast interview. If you’re thinking about Case Competitions, if you’re thinking about Flex, if you’re balancing friends and family and FEMBA, Vishal’s story has something for you.

Vishal’s three first place finishes in case competitions were:

  1. 2017 First Place “The Economist / NRG Energy Case Study” global competition
    The $10,000 prize is shared by Vishal and his team members Ean Mulligan and Julian Trobe, both in the full-time MBA program. The judges awarded UCLA #1 saying, “The UCLA Anderson Blue team’s solution was clean, concise and well thought-out.” 15 competing teams included HEC Paris, MIT, Duke, Carnegie Mellon, UCLA, Rutgers and Columbia. The UCLA Anderson Energy Management club made this competition available.
  2. 2016 First Place “PwC Fiercest Competitor Strategy” competition
    The UCLA Anderson Management Consulting Association made this competition available, with sponsorship from PwC. Two teams from UCLA actually competed against each other.
  3. 2015 First Place, 4th Annual “UCLA Challenges in Energy” case competition 
    Teams from seven schools competed, including Stanford, UC Berkeley and Michigan Ross. Vishal’s winning team “The Energizer Bunnies” consisted of Dan Freeman ’15, Dan Abbott ’16, and David Penskar ’16. The first place prize was $2,500. The UCLA Anderson Energy Management club also made this competition available.

To complete the interview, Vishal shares about:

  • Global Access Program with Finland and a Global Immersion to Hong Kong. Vishal shares about these two FEMBA experiences.
  • Maximizing productivity in FEMBA Flex. Vishal ends the interview sharing some of his secrets for success.

Vishal is a very accomplished person with 17 years of experience in Technology development & Product Management. His pre-UCLA degrees include a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Mumbai (First Class with Distinction) and an MS in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue where he earned a 4.0. UCLA Anderson helped him round out his skill set by building on his finance skills (passed 3 levels of CFA) and innovation skills (24 US and International patents awarded).

Enjoy!

Ever felt out of control at work? Faculty Spotlight featuring Assistant Professor Jennifer Whitson

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Meet Dr. Jennifer Whitson, Assistant Professor of Management and Organizations.

Professor Whitson is well known to Section One FEMBAs in the Class of 2019 as she taught their Leadership Foundations experience this year. Drive Time sits down with Professor Whitson for a thought-provoking interview.

Have you ever felt out of control at work?

Have you ever noticed a power differential and wondered how that might impact your decision making?

Do you ever wonder what it is like for a world-class scholar to choose UCLA Anderson?

You’ll learn all about these questions and more as Professor Whitson shares about her research and teaching passions:

  • Control
  • Illusory Pattern Perception
  • Power
  • Plus what she loves about UCLA Anderson students

Enjoy!

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Incentives & Motivation: Faculty Spotlight, Professor Corinne Bendersky

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Meet Corinne Bendersky, Associate Professor of Management and Organizations in this Faculty Spotlight podcast. Professor Bendersky is known to FEMBAs (2018 Section 1 and 2019 Section 2) from Leadership Foundations. This fall she is also teaching 2019s in both Sections 2 & 3 in their Organizational Behaviors course, MGMT 409.

Learn first-hand about Professor Bendersky’s research and teaching, including:

  • An overview of her next course, Incentives & Motivations: MGMT 254. offered Wednesday evenings this upcoming Winter Quarter. Her course will be available for bidding this weekend. MGMT 254 is open to EMBA and FTMBA students too and will feature three different keynote guest speakers.
  • Closing remarks for prospective FEMBAs to see the connection of in-class lessons and on-the-job, real-time applicability of the MBA education.
  • How her formative experiences in high school in New Jersey led to her research.
  • Her research studying female firefighters, a career field that it typically no more than 4% female, and what that can teach us for leading organizations.
  • Being Faculty Chair of the Human Resources Roundtable, HARRT
  • Developing our own self-awareness to become a leader who consciously constructs a context for accurate evaluation that allows others to live up to their potential, seeing what may actually present, but is untapped.

We hope you enjoy this week’s Drive Time podcast with our Faculty Spotlight and Associate Professor Corinne Bendersky.

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The Power of Context: Meet Dr. Margaret Shih, UCLA Anderson Senior Associate Dean

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Just in time to welcome our entering UCLA FEMBA Class of 2019, this week’s podcast is with Dr. Margaret Shih, Board of Visitors Term Chair Professor of Management and Senior Associate Dean, Fully Employed MBA and Full Time MBA programs.

Dean Shih shares how her international upbringing shaped her education and ultimately her research and passion in Diversity, Culture, Stereotypes, Team and Groups, Leadership, Organizational Commitment, Performance, Consumer Behavior, and Decision-Making.

She also shares about teaching, FEMBA Council, FEMBApalooza and offers some tips to our entering Class of 2019.  Enjoy!

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“I got everything I wanted from my MBA” meet Isadora Dantas ’16

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“I got everything I wanted from my MBA”  Meet Isadora Dantas, UCLA Anderson FEMBA Class of 2016. Hers is a fantastic global journey from Brazil to New York City to Los Angeles, a powerful personal transformation, and incredible career results. Isadora shares generously about the impact of FEMBA:

  • Discovering a passion for public speaking during Professor Firstenberg’s course
  • Becoming a TEDx campfire speaker at UCLA
  • Aligning her prior Master’s degree research on happiness
  • Co-founding a start-up, Petsnap, with FEMBA classmates
  • Switching careers, from graphic design to product management, leveraging the coaching of Susan Cowell and our FEMBA Career Services team
  • Switching companies, from Disney to Sony to finally landing at UCLA-founded, Cornerstone OnDemand, all utilizing her UCLA network
  • Taking a Global Immersion to Israel with Professor Gabriel to see the vibrant tech scene
  • Meeting her “FEMBesties” during school
  • (Short on time?? Start at 38:00 to hear Isadora’s summary of her FEMBA journey, and what’s next.)

Enjoy!

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Podcast: Gonzalo Freixes, Living the American Dream

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You know him. You love him. You’ve traveled the world with him. But you probably didn’t know his whole story.

Adjunct Professor, Neidorf “Decade” Teaching Award Winner, and FEMBA Associate Dean Gonzalo Freixes in a candid, one-on-one interview discusses his family’s journey to America, and his lifetime career of paying it forward.

“Living the American Dream” is not a cliché for Dean Freixes. It is the story of his life. In this tribute to the power of education, Dean Freixes tells of his family arriving in the US as political refugees with all their worldly belongings in one suitcase. From these austere beginnings, Gonzalo’s life and career has touched thousands of UCLA students, undergraduate and graduate, both on-campus and around the world. And after graduation, his connections continue in ongoing relationships with SO many alumni.

Dean Freixes’ leadership and contributions have architected and guided many of the distinguishing pillars of FEMBA, including our

  • Global Access Program
    Over 600 international companies consulted, and counting!
  • Global Immersion courses
    Over 2,000 students have now studied in over 20 countries!
  • FLEX schedule
    Gonzalo’s own Flex course includes a build-your-own elective bonus feature
  • Network of entrepreneurial alumni
    Gonzalo offers inspiring examples of connecting with high-impact alumni globally

This summer (for new and current students and alumni only) enjoy Dean Freixes live at FEMBApalooza 5, where he will be hosting a Learning on the Lawn segment titled, “Taking Your Business International.”

Enjoy!

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Academic Awards Dinner

Celebrating excellence tonight at the Academic Awards Dinner in the Executive Dining Room.

Tommy Taw. Vice President, Manager, Portfolio Analysis and Loss Forecasting, Bank of America shared this great photo of his stole for graduation. Note the slogan, “beast mode,” the nickname of Tommy’s original FEMBA study group.

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Here’s Brady and Liz Kernion ’17, Senior Contributions Associate, Capital Group, and their new baby Percy, who’s peeking out of the baby stroller in the photo. Brady is graduating with honors from the full-time MBA program and taking a job with Google. Liz is starting FEMBA this year in the Class of 2017.
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Here are my uber-smart table-mates for dinner tonight, all award winners, l-r: Tommy Taw, Nitin Saharan, Shilpy Gupta, Ryan Gutterson, Artak Arakelian and his girlfriend Lillit.
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And finally, here’s Darren Aiello and his wife Mandy. Darren and Mandy had triplets the first year of FEMBA and will welcome baby four this year, at the same time Darren begins his PhD in Finance here!

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