Home Region

Clear Lake, IA

Undergrad Education

Iowa State University, BS, 2013

Previous Experience

Apple, SpaceX

“After nearly two semesters of class...I now naturally push myself for that next-level insight.”

Why did you choose this path at this point in time?

I was ready for a change. Having spent my entire career before business school in operations—helping organizations do better with the resources that they have—I realized that I was lacking skills in how to fundamentally grow a business. Based on my research, HBS was the best place to learn those skills and test them out in a low-risk environment.

Coming to HBS is like...

...a clean slate. As an avid believer in being a lifelong student (though that, to put my parents’ minds at ease, does not mean perpetually being in school), I’ve been given two years from HBS to focus entirely on my own development—what I want to do, what I want to learn, and who I want to be. While it’s easy to get caught up in the stresses of class preparation, social events, and recruiting, I’ve tried to do my best to be intentional with how I spend these two years.

Being part of the HBS community is like...

...a constant adrenaline rush! Discussions inside and outside of class are extremely stimulating. I spend several hours a day putting myself in the shoes of a company’s CEO, plant manager, or even a country’s head of state, thinking through the pros, cons, and effects of their decisions. After nearly two semesters of class at this point, I now naturally push myself for that next-level insight. It’s incredibly motivating to look back and see such tangible growth, especially when friends and family outside of HBS point it out.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

As a surprise to everyone but my immediate family, I was determined to be a zoologist as a kid. I was obsessed with animals and learning new facts about them. At one point, I had memorized an embarrassingly large number of their Latin names. However, my grade in sophomore-year biology in high school showed me that animals were probably meant to be a fascination for me rather than a career.

What is your favorite childhood memory?

Hiking in Colorado every other summer with my family. From group hikes to Emerald Lake, to feeding hummingbirds with my grandpa, riding horses with my cousins, and traversing some of the tallest mountains in the Rockies, I will always look back on my trips to Colorado as reminders of why family is so important to me.

Who is one person from your life that you admire the most today?

Outside of my immediate family members—all of whom are rock stars in their own right—my grandma and grandpa Brockman have had a huge influence on me. Both retired college professors in math and engineering at Iowa State, they instilled loves of education and family in me from a young age. More than anything, though, their unwavering support made me believe that I could be whatever I wanted to be. Their support, love, and appreciation for education are values that I will pass down to my future family.

What’s the best thing about your hometown?

Two things come to mind when I think about Clear Lake: 1) Culver’s (a Midwestern restaurant chain) and 2) the lake. Culver’s was both my favorite place to eat and one of my first jobs. I will defend to this day that their butterburgers are the best burgers around. The lake, while ironically not clear at all, is the source of a lot of great memories from my childhood and teenage years: swimming, boating, tubing, and jet skiing.