Poets & Quants names Best and Brightest MBAs

  • May 11, 2017
  • By WashU Olin Business School
  • 3 minute read

“OpenPassionateImaginativeSteadfast.” These are the adjectives that the website Poets & Quants uses to describe their 2017 list of Best & Brightest MBAs. And it should be no surprise that two Olin MBAs are on the list. Congratulations to Markey Culver and Conn Davis! We’ve cut and pasted some excerpts here. Click on their names to link to complete profile on Poets & Quants.

Markey Culver

What was your favorite MBA course and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it? 

Competitive Industry Analysis with John Horn. I had two key takeaways: 1) the value in corporate strategy and strategic planning, and 2) competitive advantage can be not only formulaic (strategic and intentional), but differentiating. It was fascinating.

Why did you choose this business school?

I imagine I was a rather atypical applicant to Olin, coming from 3 years of living and working in East Africa and starting a social enterprise in Rwanda. My background was unconventional at best and while I had business experience, it was in my own business. Still, I chose to apply to Wash U because I seek to fuse the non-profit and for-profit sectors and Olin’s programs merit such fusion by embracing, incubating and launching entrepreneurs of all kinds. Olin’s robust entrepreneurship platform, too, is supported by a city (St. Louis) with an ever-growing, collaborative startup scene. Moreover, Olin puts emphasis on cultivating the business leader through holistic leadership training (i.e.: sharpening “soft” skills to enhance “hard” skills).

What did you enjoy most about business school in general?

My class – we have an incredible class.

Conn Davis

“I  knew I wanted to go to business school when…

I saw how much happier my wife, also a recovering lawyer, was at her new job after she finished her MBA. Her experience taught me that there were opportunities I did not know were available.”

Why did you choose this business school?

I chose Olin because its smaller class size gave me the opportunity to get to know everyone in the school. I have developed great relationships with my classmates and with the students in the class before and after me. I have also gotten to know and developed relationships beyond the classroom with many of my professors. The close-knit community at Olin is unique and very valuable.

What was your favorite MBA course and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it?

My favorite MBA Course was the core Introduction to Management and Strategy taught by Prof. Dan Elfenbein. I learned two key things in this class – (1) that I truly enjoyed working through business issues and (2) that having the right answer to a business question is less important than understanding what the answer means for the business.

To compile the 2017 Best & Brightest MBAs, P&Q reached out to 63 full-time MBA programs, with only SDA Bocconi (due to a missed deadline) and Harvard Business School (citing what it believes is a conflict with internal awards) declining to participate. Schools were chosen based on their Poets&Quants’ ranking, with each program limited to four students for consideration.

About the Author

Washington University in Saint Louis

WashU Olin Business School

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