If you're someone with a sense of initiative and a desire to create change, INSEAD offers you endless opportunities to get involved.
Divyanshu Gupta

Divyanshu Gupta

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Nationality/Passport: Indian Year of graduation: 2023 Current Role: MIM Student

Tell me a fun fact about yourself!

I became a vegetarian four years ago, and it's one of my best decisions. Since then, I've been able to persuade five other people to do the same!

What were you doing before you joined INSEAD?

I was born and brought up in the North-eastern region of India. However, not having access to quality education and work opportunities back home in Assam, I relocated to the capital city of New Delhi to pursue a degree in Business Administration & Commerce at the University of Delhi.

To complement my undergraduate degree, I pursued internships across different industries and roles that gave me a holistic view of the different areas of a business's value chain. One such formative experience was working with the United Nations in my senior year.

Post-graduation, I joined an e-commerce startup in the luxury gifting industry, allowing me to work and collaborate with a broad range of luxury and retail brands in the Indian market. In addition, I also work as a freelance Branding & Marketing professional, helping brands and entrepreneurs convey their ideas through content and storytelling.

Outside of my work, I love photography and creating travel-based content. Through the years, I've been lucky to have travelled to 12 countries, with each experience uniquely shaping and expanding my worldview.

And can you tell me why you decided to apply for the MIM? What are your goals post-MIM?

I grew up in a close-knit community where everybody knew your name. Over the years, as I've moved to New Delhi to study, my circle has grown wider and more diverse, but I have always retained my appreciation of a strong sense of community – no matter where I've gone, it's the people I've met who have come to define the journey.

This is why the collegial atmosphere and culture of support at INSEAD were one of the first things that attracted me to the school.

For me, one of the biggest appeals of the programme is that entrepreneurship is both taught and experienced through INSEAD's action-based learning approach. I'm particularly excited to participate in opportunities like the INSEAD Venture Competition and Startup Bootcamp, where I will be challenged to deliver targeted solutions, learn from my teammates' diverse perspectives, and test my entrepreneurial mettle.

Moreover, the opportunity to study in not one, but two major business hubs, such as Singapore and France, will add a lot of value going forward and is well aligned with my professional ambitions.

Two years after completing my Bachelor's, my vision and expectations of myself remain abstract. I'm still in the midst of deciding what's best for my career, but the difference between the time before coming to INSEAD and now is that I have more understanding of different industries and roles out there — and a better sense of how to advance in those fields.

It’s been a whirlwind first few weeks, how has everything been going? Memorable moments so far? First impressions?

It's just been a month here in Fontainebleau, yet I already feel like I've known the people and town for years. From the Le Cercle night to cooking dinner with your home group to the crazy evenings in Glasgow, there's been so much to experience and remember! I'm sure I'd be reflecting on everything.

The first few weeks were chaotic, to say the least, but in that chaos, there were moments when you learned something entirely new about yourself or found an answer to a question you'd been asking yourself for a while.

The enormous faith INSEAD as a school has in its students was the first thing on display, along with its close-knit community. If you're someone with a sense of initiative and a desire to create change, INSEAD offers you endless opportunities to get involved. I can see myself representing the school, experiencing the breadth of the b-school culture, and sharing in the camaraderie that comes with it.

What are you most looking forward to during the rest of the programme?

I'm most looking forward to seeing how my personal and professional journey evolves over the coming year. One of the most gratifying aspects at INSEAD so far has been the enormous level of faith that the school and my classmates put in me, from being accepted to join the class of 2023 to being elected to represent the MIM on the Student Council. I can't wait to collaborate with my peers on initiatives that help define and showcase what the INSEAD MIM stands for.

I'm also very much looking forward to moving to Singapore next year. Having the opportunity to live and experience life in one of the most buzzing and business-friendly economies is something I feel would add a lot of value to my career in the future. I am excited to see the chapters unfold!

Any tips for anyone who might be interested in pursuing a MIM in the future?

I read something a while ago by one of my favourite authors, Adam Grant, which fits in nicely here — "Reject rank and popularity as a proxy for reliability."

Do your research, talk to people, and try to understand if you'd fit in well with the school's culture more than anything. In your applications, talk more about who you are as a person, what makes you tick, and how you intend to contribute to the INSEAD community since INSEAD is one of the institutions that value that above everything else.

The sooner you begin preparing for the GMAT/GRE, the better. The ideal time to start preparing for it, in my opinion, is while you are still in college and have that student mentality.

Post-graduation, it gets more challenging to prepare for it while managing professional, social, and personal obligations.

Lastly, while applying early is always a good idea, don't rush to meet the round deadline. Apply when you are most confident in your application and test scores. Consider this your one opportunity, so give it your all!

Parting words of wisdom?

“If you are insecure, guess what? The rest of the world is, too. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. You are better than you think.” ― Timothy Ferriss