Do not self-select yourself out of the process. You have what it takes to get into “The Business School of the World”. Don’t be afraid to share your authentic self through your stories.
Aisha Hafizi Iliyasu

Aisha Hafiz Iliyasu

Nationality/Passport: Nigerian Year of graduation: 2023 Current Role: IT Manager, Nigerian Communications Commission and Business Owner (Sparkle Jewellery)

Could you share a fun fact about yourself? What’s something unexpected about you?
Dancing is my superpower. It makes me happy and it’s uplifting. Finally, I am a mum of three girls (ages nine, seven and two).

Tell us why you decided to pursue the MBA, and in particular, the INSEAD MBA?

I decided to pursue an MBA at INSEAD for the following reasons:

1) Build up my leadership skills: I appreciate that leadership development at INSEAD is individualised. INSEAD provides us access to the most accomplished leaders in various sectors to facilitate our growth as leaders. Each individual is unique.

Therefore, each INSEADer is trained and mentored to be the most effective leader possible without requiring them to change.

2) Rankings: INSEAD has consistently ranked amongst the Top Five Business School in the world.

3) Sharpen my finance and entrepreneurship skills: INSEAD offers a variety of programmes for individuals wishing to start/grow firms. Academic experts are available to assist you in formulating your thoughts. Additionally, INSEAD offers bootcamps for Venture Capital (raising seed capital), Family businesses, and Start-ups.

4) Widen/Grow my network: INSEAD is a gateway to the globe. No country is predominate, and classroom conversations are vibrant and enlightening because they provide a variety of perspectives. A classroom at INSEAD is a miniature United Nations.

5) Strong employment stats (especially consulting): INSEAD boasts one of the most impressive career results among all business schools. If you are considering a career in consulting, no other school in the world is better than INSEAD.

6) Strong Alumni: Alumni of INSEAD are among the most helpful and down-to-earth MBAs I have ever met. They are genuinely interested in getting to know you and answering your queries. It made me want to join such an incredible community.

Can you share your thoughts about the class experience, professors, and the curriculum so far? Have you joined any clubs, taken ownership of or participated in any interesting initiatives?

The curriculum offers a vast selection of required and elective courses.

Professor Chengyi Lin's numerous case studies from around the world and virtual reality class make Strategy comprehensible. I think Strategy is an intriguing subject. We were able to experience a case from a different country using virtual reality technology.

I am not particularly involved in any group, but I plan to join the Women in Business Club and take a leadership position in P3. INSEAD has a rigorous curriculum, and one of my passions is getting more women, particularly moms, to INSEAD.

What are you most looking forward to during your time on the programme?

I look forward to building deeper relationships with my cohort and also the career and leadership transformation of myself.

Any tips for those who are considering an INSEAD MBA?

I am passionate about seeing more women, especially mothers, in MBA programmes.

As mothers, we sometimes underestimate how resilient we are and the things we can accomplish. Motherhood is your superpower, and it is a leadership experience in itself. Own your story and share it with the world. If you are a mum and considering an MBA, I have these tips for you; 

  • Take as much time as you need when studying for your GMAT/GRE. With a hectic schedule, dedicate three to nine months to get your desired score. Get help from your family to maximise your study time.
  • Apply when you are most ready. Round 1/ 2/3 doesn't make a difference.
  • You are unique, and your story is powerful. Please share it with the world. 

Additionally, do some self-reflection, write down your goals, do in-depth research on INSEAD, and speak to as many people as possible. Try to attend admissions webinars to ask your questions directly to Admission Officers.

Parting words of wisdom?

Do not self-select yourself out of the process. You have what it takes to get into “The Business School of the World”. Don’t be afraid to share your authentic self through your stories.