Fernanda Seroa da Motta Jordao (Class of 2017) is originally from Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. She found out about Darden through The Economist ranking. Fernanda received a BA in Industrial Engineering in 2010 from Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio).
Q: What have you learned from Darden, outside of the classroom?
The first thing I learned at Darden is to how better prioritize things. You need to balance between academics, recruiting and social activities to get the best from all of it.
Also, the importance of the community to Darden is huge and I’ve never experienced that before. It’s good to be part of Charlottesville community and to help each other.
Another important aspect is about ethics and trust. Darden really believes in its students. The honor code here is something really huge/important and part of our culture.
Q: Have you participated in any global academic programs while at Darden? Please share about your experience.
Yes, I traveled to Japan for the Kaizen (a partnership between Darden and Danaher). We spent a week working in a kaizen project in a Danaher factory. It was my first time in Asia. It was an amazing experience to work in another country in a language that I didn’t know how to speak. I realized that body language also speaks a lot. And that people can understand you and help you even if you don’t speak their language. Besides that, it was wonderful to get to know a new culture, a new place.
Q: What did you do for your summer internship?
During this past summer, I worked at Dell Technologies in the consumer side. I worked specifically with their development and retention program. I loved the experience and it helped me confirm that I wanted to keep working with Marketing after graduation. It prepared me well for a full-time role since it gave me the opportunity to network with different people and have a better understanding of the company and of the area.
Q: Tell me about your experiences Darden’s with clubs. Why are they important and meaningful to you and the community?
For me, one of the most important things as a student is to be able to “give back” and help our school and community keep improving. So, I’m a Social/Events VP of two clubs: Latin American Student Association (LASA) and Media, Entertainment and Sports Club (MESC). I love to bring people together and there is no better way than creating a nice event, like a barbecue for LASA. That’s the best way to get to know each other, get to know different cultures and have nice conversations.
Q: What do you think of Charlottesville?
I love Charlottesville. I couldn’t have asked for a better place to do my MBA. Charlottesville is really a charming city. Plenty of vineyards to visit with amazing landscapes, many trails for hiking, a variety of restaurants and a really cute Downtown Mall.
For me, the best time to be here is during the Fall. It’s so beautiful and a drive through Skyline Drive will make you fall in love with the city/state. As people tend to say, Virginia is for lovers!
Q: What is the most unexpected thing you’ve learned studying at Darden?
I’ve learned that I’m much more patient and psychological stronger than I thought I was! Hehe. It also made me value even more my time and my true friendships. Time is so precious as well as my real friends! If I’m graduating next May, it’s because of the support of my loved family as well as the support of amazing friends that I made at Darden and that I will keep forever!
Doing a MBA at Darden is not only a matter of learning a lot about different subjects and getting ready for future opportunities that will show up, but it’s also learning about your true self. Doing a MBA is a much deeper and important decision than I ever thought it would be.