Enter your keyword

Getting to Know

Richard M Hendler, Clinical Associate Professor of Law in Business

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today?

A pivotal point in my life was deciding to leave a six-year program at RPI/UPenn in the first week of my freshman year, solely because I knew right away that I was unhappy with the path I had started. Believing in that intuition led me to my wife, to following in my father’s footsteps to become an attorney, and to teaching. Life is imperfect, and I didn’t do these things knowing it would ʺwork outʺ — I was deeply afraid none of it would work out at all. But finding the courage to embrace life’s imperfection despite uncertainty is crucial to adaptation, and adaptation is essential to forging one’s path.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… an unwavering love for the people around me and for what I do and a sense of grounded optimism in the face of life’s challenges.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Remember to search for and find passion in your life. I usually elaborate that the goal is to find someone with whom you can share passion and something you can be passionate about professionally.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Some years ago, I stopped by my eldest daughter’s apartment to surprise her with a visit. But I was instead surprised to find all four of my children were there — not for any particular occasion, just simply to hang out together. This is a moment I think of often because it really does fill me with such pride. I am happy that my children have grown to be good and hard-working individuals, but I am thrilled that they have such strong relationships with each other.

The best advice I ever got was…people change when ʺthe pain of the pain is greater than the pain of the change.ʺ

Sheri Holt, LDP Class of 2018

What are you most passionate about? Storytelling

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What do you expect of your manager?

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… recognizing everyone as an individual

What is your proudest accomplishment? I am proudest of my relationship with my sister, my best friend, greatest ally and greatest example of perseverance.

The best advice I ever got was…people change when ʺthe pain of the pain is greater than the pain of the change.ʺ

Nate Pettit, Assistant Professor of Management and Organizations

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Having a very blue-collar upbringing with strong white-collar aspiration, and never feeling completely comfortable with either

What is your proudest accomplishment? Having children who laugh (although they’re only 4 and 6, so I can’t take too much credit yet)

The best advice I ever got was… stop looking to others for advice/guidance and start listening to yourself

Cameron McClure, LDP Class of 2018

What are you most passionate about? People. I find humans endlessly fascinating.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? I always want to know what people would change about their organization and what their greatest frustration is.

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Growing up with the Special Olympics shaped my value system. My older brother started playing basketball when I was five. Over that decade, my brothers teammates and their families became my extended family. In addition to giving me an appreciation for sports – I still get more excited at my brother’s games than any professional event – Special Olympics gave me a community based on acceptance, kindness, and valuing people for their character rather than their skills. I took these values for granted well into my twenties, but have slowly come to appreciate how much the Special Olympics community helped instill these values in me.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Stern is such a wonderful community. The more ways you can find to engage, the more you’ll get out of these two years.

The best advice I ever got was…when you speak, it’s so the other person understands rather than so you can get the words out. That seems painfully obvious, but was fairly important for me in learning how to slow down, project, and improve the clarity of my language.

Jeffrey Carr, Clinical Professor of Marketing and Entrepreneurship

What are you most passionate about? Art and music

What is your favorite interview question to ask? Tell me your biggest failure and what you did afterward.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… being generous and good humored.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Focus on where you want to go and focus your efforts to get there.

What is your proudest accomplishment? I’ve been a professor at NYU Stern for over 20 years. When I hear from a former student that I had a major impact on their professional life I think to myself: what more could a teacher want?

The best advice I ever got was…some bridges are worth burning.

Connie Kim, Director of LDP

What are you most passionate about? Learning, yoga, nature

What is your favorite interview question to ask? If you could do anything or be anyone, with no hindrances (i.e., money, prestige, success, etc.), what would you do or be?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? While there have been a few life events that have helped shape who I am today, the one “big” one occurred when I took 15 months off between two leverage finance jobs. I had always wanted to learn Spanish, so moved to Antigua, Guatemala for a few months to learn this beautiful language. During my time there, I volunteered at a children’s hospital, casually taught some yoga and woke up every day at 6am, thoroughly energized and deeply content. This “me” time helped my sort out a number of personal challenges I had going on, while helping me reconnect with my true passions and shed some “edgy” layers.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… being honest, loving and generous

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Exhibiting humbleness and willingness to learn are traits that can take you far in your life.

What is your proudest accomplishment? By far, it is having my two children…and still working. I have found that raising my children has pushed me beyond many measures – I’ve discovered the incredible depth of how much I can love (infinite), the outer boundaries of my level of patience (it is NOT infinite), the extent of my how deep my fears are for them (like the black hole), the incredible willingness to always be silly (Trolls), and more. It is such an honor to be given the opportunity to mold these little beans.

The best advice I ever got was…Treat everyone the same and stay in touch with people you meet … CEO, assistant, janitorial staff, etc. You never know where it can take you.

Batia Wiesenfeld, Chair, Management and Organizations Department

What are you most passionate about? Learning – through my research, teaching, travel, and from my husband and children who I respect and admire so much.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What are you proudest of?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Ironically, the support of several men in my life who believed in me and made me believe in myself is what enabled me to blaze a path that is entirely different from what I was brought up to think a woman’s role could be.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… creating opportunities and support for them to achieve, because then their achievements are, in part, my own.

What is your proudest accomplishment? My family.

Ariel Phipps Segal, NYU Stern Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Using analytical skills to advance creativity and innovation.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? Do you have any questions for me? (smart, thoughtful questions can be just as important as the answers!)

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? My college internship at a print magazine in Washington DC, building the brand’s digital presence from the ground up.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… being curious, thoughtful, diligent, and generous.

The best advice I ever got was… Every morning growing up, my dad left for work with the parting words, “be good, get smart.” These two directives guided me throughout my childhood and continue to guide me to this day. For me, being “good” means showing integrity, generosity, and empathy. My dad is incredibly charitable and taught me the value of devoting time and energy to help others. I am also defined by my tireless desire to “get smart”—to learn, analyze, and problem-solve. I aim to continually improve, and the process of learning itself excites me.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Painting (my grandfather has become a painter in his retirement)

Niki Taylor, NYU Stern Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Helping others. I love to volunteer, especially in local communities where we can both learn from each other.

What is your proudest accomplishment? My proudest accomplishment is summiting Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania to raise money for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. This organization has been close to my heart, and the summit was both emotionally and physically challenging.

The best advice I ever got was… Don’t worry, be happy.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Singing! I’ve always dreamed of being a singer on stage. Adele is my idol.

Charles Mangiardi, NYU Stern Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Helping effective socially-driven organizations access the capital they need to grow.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What failure have you learned the most from?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Seeing my family members struggle with addiction and mental health challenges.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… Incorporating intentionality into my life and living my values.

What is your proudest accomplishment? It’s hard to pick one specific student, but my collective work mentoring students toward huge gains either academically or in their careers. On a resume basis, it would be seeing politicians and think tanks pick up the language and proposals my team created that reflected our experiences with those same students.

The best advice I ever got was… Stop worrying about life and career planning. Focus on what’s next: pick a cause and an organization you’re passionate about and will work hard for in a way that draws upon yours skills, and work as hard as you can. The rest will take care of itself.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Coaching football

Hersh Iyer, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Using Technology to improve lives

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What gets you out of bed everyday / What challenges excite you?

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… Compassion and humility

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Push yourself to explore as many things that business school has to offer. You will be surprised with everything that you can achieve or at least try and learn in these 2 years.

What is your proudest accomplishment? In 2015, as part of the Intel Education Service Corps, I volunteered two weeks of my time to teach concepts in Programming and Internet-of-Things to a group of high-school students from low-income families in India. It was amazing to see the genuine interest and excitement that my teaching had brought in the students. Exposing them to what’s beyond the basic education they get in Government schools due to limited resources was the best thing anyone could have done to them at this stage in their lives. It invigorated new dreams, new career paths and ambitions which these kids did not even know existed before spending 2 weeks with me in 2015. This will always remain a cherished memory that I am very proud of.

The best advice I ever got was… You can succeed anywhere as long as you focus on the right things and give it your 200%. You don’t need to go to the best school or drive around in the best car to feel successful. Those are only secondary to your dedication (my mother’s advice).

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Teaching

Joao Lourenco, NYU Stern Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Traveling

What is your favorite interview question to ask? Where are you going on your next vacation?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Studying abroad for a year in college.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… Always being there for them.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Get an offer anywhere. Then explore, expand, experiment. But get that offer before. Then think about what else you can do with your MBA, knowing there’s something for you to fall back on.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Marrying the woman I love.

The best advice I ever got was… Never threaten anyone unless you’re willing/able to follow through with it.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Investment banking

Nancy Van Way, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Community

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What is your ideal job description?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Working with a small Hawaiian community for 2.5 years.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for… Inspiring them to be the best that they could be.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Talk to people outside your usual group.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Establishing an exchange program at my college with a think tank in Ghana.

The best advice I ever got was… If you don’t understand everything, make sure you write it down.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Someone that gets to read lots of fiction books, I guess an editor.

Jorge Fernandez Cuervo, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Politics and investments.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? Do you enjoy it?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? My dad died when I was seven, and it definitely shaped who I am.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Being nice and doing great things.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Never give up, fight until the end.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Getting my previous job. I was working in an insurance firm as an internal consultant, but I knew I wanted to work in finance. So I applied to different firms, I made a few interviews…and the one I liked most rejected me because my background was not that deep in finance. They recommend me to take the CFA exams in order to increase my chances to get a job in the financial sector.
I enroll the CFA in the last minute, I studied hard every day after work… and I pass level I. I applied again to this firm, and they offered me the job!

The best advice I ever got was…”La única lucha que se pierde es la que se abandona” (“The only battle you lose is the one that you give up”) from Ernersto Che Guevara (I really hate that guy…but I love the quote).

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Portfolio manager or Michelin restaurant critic.

Munashe Makava, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Being an enabler; i.e., enabling: value creation, talent development, and success.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What lights up the fires of passion within you?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? The timing of my birth, because that happened soon after a major change in the underlying culture in our family.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Keeping them smiling.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? A lot of people invested time and resources for you to get where you are now. Pay it forward.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Getting a very beautiful (internally and externally) person to overlook many suitors, look past my shortcomings and commit to spending the rest of her life with me.

The best advice I ever got was… 1. When two things are the same, one is unnecessary, for example, you only need one right hand, you only need one mouth etc. Thrive on your difference!

2. Wherever there’s a problem, there’s potential to add value (and in most cases to make money). There are so many problems in this world. You know which one you are called to by asking yourself: ‘What pains me?’ When you start doing work related to your answer to this question, not even divine forces can rob you of your motivation.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Acting!

Kyle Boutin, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Healthcare, biotechnology, and helping others through these fields.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What do you do outside of work?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? My relationships with my brothers.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Always being there for them and never giving up.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Just relax, there isn’t enough time to do everything you want to do and that’s okay.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Being published in a peer reviewed journal and being named an inventor on a patent.

The best advice I ever got was…Keep an open mind. You never know what someone else is thinking or what someone else is going through. Given the same circumstances, you might be acting the same way. Walking a mile in someone else’s shoes can be eye opening and lead to new ways of thinking.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? A surgeon.

Eric DeFeo, LDP Class of 2017

What are you most passionate about? Solving natural problems.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What is your proudest accomplishment? (seriously).

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? College, it was challenging.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Being honest.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Don’t forget to ask yourself why you want that job so badly. Be truthful to yourself.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Selling my first consulting project and receiving extremely positive feedback from the client’s whole organization.

The best advice I ever got was…All of the big good ideas have been thought of, and you are not interested in small good ideas and definitely not small bad ideas. So, I suggest that you figure out how to make the big bad ideas work.”

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Shipmate or woodsman.

Natasha Go, LDP Class of 2016

What are you most passionate about? Diversity and inclusion efforts and food.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What haven’t we asked you that you wish we had?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? My freshman year pre-orientation event that focused on the “-isms”

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Being real.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Be authentic.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Being a terrific boss.

The best advice I ever got was…Don’t be the person other people want you to be.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Cake decorator.

Dolly Chugh, Associate Professor of Management and Organizations, NYU Stern

What are you most passionate about? Reading, Learning, Hamilton on Broadway.

What is your favorite interview question to ask? What do you wish I had asked you?

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Growing up as the child of very hard-working immigrant parents – I both love America and can view it from insider and outsider perspectives.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Compassion, strength and drive.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Be revolutionary, every day (advice courtesy of Silas House).

What is your proudest accomplishment? Career: Navigating my way from my first career in business to a second career in academia. Family: Waiting for the right life partner, which I found in the amazing CJ Singh. Together, we just keep figuring stuff out as a team.

The best advice I ever got was…Do the right thing and don’t worry about the outcome (my parents’ version).

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? I am in my dream job! (maybe talk show host?)

Samantha Thiel, LDP Class of 2016

What are you most passionate about? Learning and intellectual curiosity. And also the social impact space – making it easier for organizations with social missions to achieve those goals!

What is your favorite interview question to ask? Tell me about a situation in which you demonstrated great resilience, and describe to me what resilience means to you.

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Having a supportive family that pushed me to grow, to take on new challenges, and to help pick me up when I failed.

I want to be remembered by my family and friends for…Compassion, strength and drive.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Know yourself! Take the time you need to be introspective, to experiment with what you enjoy, to explore new opportunities. There is no better time to try new opportunities, so take advantage and see where it leads you. It will help you discover where you can have the most impact and what you would most like to pursue long-term.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Attending Stern as one of the inaugural Berkley Scholarship winners, and landing my dream job!

The best advice I ever got was…Failure is rarely fatal. Making mistakes or not reaching an intended goal is not the end of the world, and so you should not treat it as such. Don’t be overcome by the emotionality of failure. Instead, take advantage of the potential benefit the opportunity provides. Recognize failure, gather feedback, be disciplined, and experiment with pluralism. Get over your ego and try again with a smarter and better approach, or try something new and commit to what works.

What profession other than your own, would you like to attempt? Being a professional chef.

Roxanne Hori, Associate Dean, NYU Stern Corporate Relations and Career Services

What are you most passionate about? People doing what they love and baking.

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? The Civil Rights Movement. All that happened in the 60s and 70s shaped my world view on social justice and tolerance. 

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Listen to your inner voice and don’t fall prey to joining the herd. Embrace your choices and don’t be afraid to follow your dream.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Mother to two strong, successful daughters.

The best advice I ever got was…Treat others with dignity and respect.

Andre Solano da Rocha Pereira, LDP Class of 2016

What are you most passionate about? My wife, family and friends and being able to work on something that takes me out of my “comfort zone.”

What is your favorite interview question to ask? “Why do you want this job?” and “Why should I give you this job?”

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? When I found out at 15 years old that I had diabetes, and would have food restriction and would need to take insulin injections several times a day, everyday, for the rest of my life. It gave me a good sense of how we deal with real problems without letting them turn me down.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Take these 2 years to explore the numerous career possibilities at Stern. Sometimes what you were expecting when you joined the MBA program ends up not being your career choice. And that is ok. Try to use the numerous resources that the school offers in this research and, in the end, everything is going to be alright.

The best advice I ever got was…My father used to say to me when I was a kid: “Life is usually very hard and has no mercy if you feel weak. So be strong!”

Kate Gregory, Director, NYU Stern Corporate Relations

What’s your favorite interview question to ask? A la Malcolm Gladwell’s theory, “What would we find in your trash?” (that has shown to be more revealing than a series of interviews).

Looking back, what life event/situation helped shape who you are today? Attending an all women’s school.

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Meet as many people as you can during your time at Stern.

What is your proudest accomplishment? Completing the “Team in Training” NYC Triathlon for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

The best advice I ever got was… In fair weather, prepare for foul!

Dan DeVece, LDP Class of 2015, Assistant Brand Manager at Colgate Palmolive

What advice would you want to share with current MBA students? Be a sponge! Do your research, ask questions and learn as much as possible. You still have so much to learn once you get your MBA. You’re only at the tip of your knowledge iceberg.

What is your proudest accomplishment? My proudest accomplishment is graduating from Stern. Stern allowed me to prepare for a career in marketing, form bonds with great friends and travel the world to get a broader perspective of consumers. Getting into Stern was challenging and the day I got my acceptance letters still remains one of my most cherished memories.

The best advice I ever got was … A friend once told me, “I don’t want to be right, I want my way.” She later explained it’s more important to keep the long-term vision and work collaboratively, which may mean loosing some of the battles to win the war.