“The RC program guarantees that everyone shares a foundation in business administration.”

For Marco Crespo, the motivation behind getting an MBA goes straight to the roots of his ambitions. After completing an engineering degree and working at Boston Consulting Group in Sao Paolo, “I wanted to learn the foundations of business,” Marco says. “I had learned a lot at BCG, but didn’t yet see the complete spectrum of each management subject.”

Marco applied, and was accepted into, four different MBA programs. HBS became his top choice for a number of reasons. “The case method is really helpful to me,” he says. “At first, I struggled with language and cultural differences – many of us international students just aren’t used to raising our hands in a big classroom. Now, I’m much more confident having deep conversations in a different language. Beyond that, I’ve learned to effectively disagree.”

The general management curriculum appeals to Marco as well. “I like that the first-year Required Curriculum is the same for the whole group. The RC program guarantees that everyone shares a foundation in business administration.”

In the race for better education in Brazil

As driven as he is to succeed in business, Marco is also committed to improving the education of young people in his native country of Brazil. “After I graduate, I want to return to a nonprofit I worked for before, the Ayrton Senna Foundation,” says Marco. Founded by the sister of the late Formula 1 racing driver – a champion regarded by many as the best ever – the Foundation’s mission is to “improve public education in Brazil and help children achieve their full potential. Through my experience at BCG, I realized the amazing impact I could have with the Senna Foundation, helping them become financially sustainable and continue to impact the lives of 2 million Brazilian children per year.”

To increase his own potential, Marco is taking a summer internship with Education Pioneers, a nonprofit that prepares young people for leadership roles in education. In the meantime, Marco is pursuing not one, but two entrepreneurial ventures: a for-profit business, designed with a Brazilian classmate, that’s building an online booking platform for pet hotels; and a social enterprise, in collaboration with three of his RC colleagues, that evaluates and ranks the quality of Brazilian nonprofits for potential charitable donors.