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Meet Our 2019 Cohort of Fellows: Natasha Pangarkar

University of Virginia, Darden School of Business

I am a first-year MBA candidate at the Darden School of Business. I was born in Minneapolis and grew up in Singapore, returning to the US to start college. I graduated from Williams College with a BA in Chemistry and Economics. While at Williams, I studied abroad at the University of Oxford, served as the chair of the South Asian Students Association and the treasurer of the Debate Union. Post graduation, I was as a Management Consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton, where I worked on tech, corporate finance, and data science projects.

What made you consider business school?

I have always loved school, so I knew that I wanted to get a graduate degree. I went to Booz Allen without a business background - the first time I heard of Porter's Five Forces was two years into my job. I wanted to go to business school to build my knowledge of business and enhance my leadership and technical skills.

What are you most excited about in terms of your time in business school?

I am very excited to meet more of my talented cohort of peers. Darden's focus on the case method will really allow me to learn from the diverse experiences of my classmates.

Who are some leaders (in the LGBT community, in business, or in society) that most inspire you?

I admire Ruth Bader Ginsburg for her unfailing commitment to gender parity and her resilience in the face of tragedy in her personal life. I find Ellen DeGeneres inspirational. Growing up in Singapore, Ellen was the first openly queer woman I saw represented in the media. Coming out in 1997 was a tremendous risk, but it touched the lives of so many people around the world.

What's one thing everyone should know about you?

I taught myself to knit and crochet by watching youtube tutorials and haven't put the needles down since. I usually have a project or two with me and most of my close friends and family have a handmade gift from me.