One of the many benefits of our Executive MBA Program’s location in the Washington, DC area is access to incredible speakers. Earlier this month, our students hosted Victor Boutros, CEO of the Human Trafficking Institute (HTI) for a discussion on the economics of human trafficking. HTI is an “organization focused on eradicating modern slavery by emplowering police and prosecutors to stop traffickers.” We recently caught up with Senior Associate Director of Admissions, Katherine Alford, to learn more about the presentation.

What was the focus of the talk? 

At a high level, to raise awareness about the human trafficking industry and the work Victor and the Human Trafficking Insitute are doing to fight traffickers. It was a timely visit as the students are currently studying Global Economies and Markets (GEM) and Operations, which includes supply chain. Victor challenged students to ensure their organizations’ supply chains are not benefitting from trafficking, which can be of particular concern when contracting with companies in developing countries.

What did you learn about from the talk?

Today, there are roughly 25 million people in modern slavery. Trafficking is the fastest growing crime on the globe, and it is driven by money. Traffickers need laborers to help them make money, and where laws are not enforced, traffickers use force and violence to secure labor. HTI is working to empower police and prosecutors to enforce the law, but business leaders also have an important role to play in these efforts. It’s imperative that companies – particularly those that are frequently importing goods from developing countries – do their part and ensure their supply chains are clean.

How do you think the program’s location in the Washington, DC area enhances the student experience?

There is so much happening in the DC area. Because of our convenient Rosslyn location, we are able to attract speakers from a deep and diverse pool of leaders. I have found these individuals are eager to speak with our students, and given our location, it is very easy for them to do so.

What’s your best advice for prospective students?

Applying to business school takes a lot of time and effort – Enjoy the process! As you consider this step, reflect upon your career path to date and think thoughtfully about your path going forward. This introspection and planning will not only make for a stronger application – It will also strengthen your confidence and pay dividends in the long run.