The Class of 2010 Settles In

Members of the newest class hail from 52 countries, held jobs at 244 organizations, and boast a combined 1,462 years' work experience.

September 01, 2008

They hail from 52 countries, held jobs at 244 organizations, and boast a combined 1,462 years of work experience at companies including consumer products businesses, technology firms, health care enterprises, media companies, and banking groups.

They’re the newest members of the Stanford Graduate School of Business MBA Class of 2010. On September 15 they gathered in Bishop Auditorium to hear kickoff speeches by top Business School officials who detailed the class’ different professional backgrounds, challenged them to step out of their comfort zones, and urged them to always aim for something big.

“Remember, the goal here is to learn,” Sharon Hoffman, associate dean and director of the MBA Program, told the incoming class. “As everyone has told you, don’t play to your strengths. Take things that are going to stretch you. Volunteer for things you are not good at. The struggle is not something to be avoided at all costs. That is part of the reason you are here.” The current class of 370 students was selected from 6,575 applications, said Derrick Bolton, assistant dean and director of MBA Admissions. “We had to turn down a lot of really amazing people,” Bolton said, adding that this year’s acceptance rate was about 7.5 percent, making Stanford “one of the most selective business schools in the world.”

“My goal in saying this is simply to remind you what an incredible privilege it is to be sitting where you are today,” added Bolton. “Make the most of the opportunity.” The incoming class reported a total of 119 undergraduate majors, including economics, business management, finance and marketing, international trade, investment, and banking — subjects you’d expect MBAs to embrace. But some of the incoming class had non-business majors including anthropology, cinema, journalism, religious studies, philosophy, sexuality, and studio art.

They worked for organizations including ABC News, Deloitte Consulting, Goldman Sachs, eBay, HSBC Bank, the U. S. Navy, and the Walt Disney Company.

Athleticism is a hallmark for many of the incoming students, who engaged in 30 different sports including archery, fencing, polo, tennis, Ultimate Frisbee, and wrestling. In the class are former members of the Belgian national basketball team, the national fencing team of Jordan, and an Egyptian Tae Kwon Do national champion.

At the professional sports level, a student from Paris had been a professional race car driver, while another incoming student played for both the San Diego Padres and the Chicago Cubs.

Several new students have already been entrepreneurs. One from San Francisco founded a company that sells an anti-gravity treadmill purchased by Nike and the NBA’s Golden State Warriors. A student from Madrid launched a website that now has 3 million members and has been dubbed “the Facebook of Spain,” after the popular U.S. social networking website. Korea’s first music channel was started by yet another new member of the class of 2010. Another student designs dinnerware, flatware, napkins, and invitations for Pottery Barn. A former worker at Southwest Airlines, who designed the rollers used to take bags through airport scanning systems, is a classmate. Lisa Schwallie, senior associate director of the MBA program, urged the incoming MBA students to continue building their accomplishments: “Strive for something great. We have high expectations for you — both for the two years you will be here and beyond.”

By Michele Chandler

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