Weekend Executive MBA Student Natalya Wallin
“The Fuqua network opens so many doors. With classmates from diverse backgrounds, industries, and areas of expertise, I have an incredible cohort to reach out to for advice, insights, and camaraderie no matter where my career takes me next.”
Senior Strategist
Apparel Action Forum

Weekend Executive MBA

Class of 2022
Industry:
Consulting

Prior Education:

University of Chicago
Public Policy, 2015
Hometown:
Asheville, North Carolina
Nationality:
USA

Reflections

The idea of achieving “balance” with school, work, and personal life is a bit misleading. For me, it was more about making clear tradeoffs and then attempting to be fully present and engaged in the moment. It came down to the basics: daily to-do lists, communication, and being willing to say “no” to stay focused. In practice, this meant that when I was on campus for residency weekends, I let work know in advance that I would be unavailable. If I had an intense week coming up at work, I let my Duke team know realistic timelines for my inputs on a case. If I had a camping trip with family, I left my laptop at home.

Before Fuqua

I served as Director of Strategic Partnerships at the Global Fund. In this role, I developed and executed strategies for resource mobilization with the Board and CEO resulting in approximately 83 million USD in funding. I also cultivated relationships with governments, companies, and community leaders in 15 countries, built partnerships to address forced labor risks in high-priority sectors (like apparel manufacturing), and managed external communications and public relations around the world.

After Fuqua

I am pursuing a private-sector career at the intersection of strategy, innovation, and ESG investing. Post-pandemic, there are opportunities to re-think the future. I have already been applying frameworks from the MBA courses to identify ways to leverage technology and investor awareness to drive sustainability.

Advice

Plan to be physically present for residencies whenever possible. Being on campus was an integral part of the Fuqua experience. Set clear expectations at work before the program starts and also communicate clearly with your Duke team. Get to know the program managers and take advantage of the resources at the Career Management Center—they were great sources of advice throughout the entire program.

Weekend Executive MBA

Top Areas of Career Focus

IT (16%)
Financial Services (14%)
Health Care/Health Services (10%)
Manufacturing/Operations (9%)
Sales/Business Development (8%)
Consulting (8%)

Typical Class Demographics
Weekend Executive MBA

Age Range

28-45

Work Experience

5-20 years

Students with Advanced Degrees

32%

Countries Represented

19

Women

27%
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