Silvia lives by the principle of remaining curious and keeping an open mind. She is a highly qualified molecular biologist, but she did not stop there. “I was interested in the science and the lab work, but I also wanted to see the bigger business picture,” she explained. She soon found a role with Roche that drew neatly on her educational background while giving her a springboard into the business world.
Five years later, she enrolled on the part-time MBA programme. What was behind that decision? “Pure curiosity. It sounds crazy, but it really was!” she explained, laughing. “I had been assigned to a few courses, but they all expired after a certain amount of time and either needed topping-up or ongoing payment... Knowledge shouldn’t expire!” she added, laughing even more.
Silvia has made the most of her time on the programme. “It became clear that there were sizable gaps in my comprehension of topics like finance and economics. Being in the part-time MBA programme allowed me to experience filling these gaps in ‘real-time'. Like when my department went through a transformation, and I was able to align my value proposition to new objectives, using concepts that I’d learned in the first year of the programme,” she recalled.
Silvia entered an exchange programme with Imperial College London, one of the MBA’s partner schools. “Innovation drives me – I enjoy solving problems in new ways,” she said. “I realised this over my time on the programme, so my choice to do the Imperial College exchange programme in London reflected this. The whole experience blew me away. The entire two years at St.Gallen and Imperial combined have opened so many new horizons for me.”
The last words belong to Silvia. “My message of hope is to people considering the MBA but lack some understanding of the core business concepts: Look, I studied biology. If you embrace the will to succeed, you can make it too!”