An Afternoon at the 2nd Annual Evening MBA Women in Business Brunch
The morning of the Evening MBA Women in Business Brunch, I recall getting dressed with excitement. More than anything, I was happy to be able to do one of my favorite things in life, which is brunch, as well as connecting with my fellow women classmates. As a first-year MBA student, I am finding that these moments outside of the classroom are just as valuable as time inside of the classroom.
As I arrived to the Emory Hotel and Conference Center, I was greeted by faculty, Dr. Corey Dortch and Shanice Brown and quite a few ladies gathered outside of the very robust brunch spread with smiling servers. I got the opportunity to chat with some classmates and also meet a couple of alumni with whom I had previously connected on Linked In. I was already off to a great start, sans food.
Soon we were all encouraged to take our seats for the program to begin. I chose to sit closer to the front, where I had the opportunity to meet Jennifer Lind 22EvMBA as we briefly conversed before the welcoming. Dr. Corey Dortch opened the event to welcome us, followed by Jennifer Lind who introduced our guest speaker. We had the pleasure of meeting Marina Cooley 14MBA, an alum who wears many hats as a Marketing Lecturer for Goizueta and of the chief marketing officer at Lavva. Although I admittedly did a quick Linked In search on her prior to the event, none of what I read compared to meeting her in person and hearing her story.
Marina had my ears as soon as she mentioned her prior experience as an entrepreneur in a product-based business, the struggles and failures of the business, and her current random feelings of imposter syndrome. I felt like she was me and I was her! As a previous owner of a handmade gift shop, I was the butcher, the baker, and the candlestick maker. I did it all and poured my all into it. In the moment of hearing her story and how she used that very background to excel in the corporate world and land a place in academia, it hit me. I had to change my perspective of my own entrepreneurship journey. Furthermore, her mention of “imposter syndrome” is the little phrase that only the brave can admit out loud. She was brave! I oftentimes experience this, but then I realize how all of me (failures and successes) are a vital part of my story that is still being written. More so, I belong where I am!
Shanice Brown offered closing remarks which almost seemed to come too soon, because I was totally captivated by Marina Cooley’s words. We proceeded to gather and converse over an awesome brunch with mimosas, of course. I got the chance to meet Marina and other amazing women in my cohort and other classes as we gathered in the beautiful outdoor space. What was even more beautiful about the experience besides the brunch, of course, was the diversity of the group and through our conversations, seeing the many layers of the women that make up Goizueta’s program. We are pretty awesome!