The six months since graduating from INSEAD have passed by in no time, and I’m still a bit surprised to call myself an alumna. With the whirlwind of the experience still close, I’m just starting to define this new chapter, finding my feet in a new role and exploring what it means to be part of the alumni community.
My background is not uncommon for INSEAD – I grew up in Uruguay and the United States, and moved to Israel at the age of nineteen to study industrial engineering. Ever since, I’ve lived with the familiar INSEAD feeling of not knowing where home is, and a deep sense of curiosity about other cultures. After nine years, I felt ready to push my limits again, and finally made my way to Fontainebleau with my husband and our cat – both of whom turned out to be fantastic MBA partners.
Since graduating last December, I took some time off to get settled in London before joining The Boston Consulting Group. We chose London post-INSEAD for a mix of professional and personal reasons, and feel incredibly lucky to be here. While flat hunting for a pet-friendly apartment was truly a delight, this felt like home from the very first days. From a career perspective, I loved that London offices were highly diverse and offered projects in multiple industries. But more than that, I’ve felt that I can be my own multicultural self here, without having to earn the right to belong – no one seems to mind where I’m from. With family close by and career opportunities for my husband, London ticked all the boxes, but has delivered much more. And after years of living under relentless sunshine year-round, yes, I really can’t get enough of rainy Sunday afternoons with a cup of tea…
The learning curve at BCG so far has been exhilarating, in many ways matching the pace and depth of reflection that I experienced at INSEAD. I’m currently working on a case that will make a very tangible impact on people’s lives, and have been surrounded by exceptionally supportive colleagues and mentors. It’s been a pleasure to begin my journey together with some familiar faces from INSEAD, and to meet alumni doing incredible work at BCG. I can see truly exciting opportunities ahead, and feel fortunate to be working with frighteningly intelligent people, advising clients on the problems that matter most to them.
Looking back, the decision to go to INSEAD was triggered by the same pursuit of discovery. I was eager to expand my horizons, and felt that INSEAD’s multicultural environment was the best fit for me. From a career perspective, I was looking for a change in location and scope, aiming to transition into strategy consulting at a global level. I also very much wanted the experience – the opportunity to stop time and explore, make strong friendships, and find connections in unexpected places.
My time at INSEAD delivered all of the above, and ended with the immense honor of being Valedictorian of my class at our Graduation Ceremony in Singapore. I was elected by my peers, and overcome by the outpour of support and encouragement from people I deeply respect. The memories and emotions of this day are still fresh, and my wish for my classmates is as strong as ever – that INSEAD not be the single best year of our lives, but just the first of many.
It’s early days yet, and time will tell where the journey will take me. In the coming months, I’m focusing on growing at BCG, exploring London and giving back by supporting INSEAD recruiting in the fall. I look forward to becoming active in the alumni community, and hope to meet you all soon. To the Class of July 2018 – welcome to the other side!
If you are interested in sharing your alumni story, please contact the UK alumni association at firstname.lastname@example.org