2017 Best & Brightest: Carrie (Juxian) Bao, James Madison University

Carrie (Juxian) Bao

James Madison University

Describe yourself in 15 words or less: an optimistic realist who truly believes in the existence of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

Fun fact about yourself: Doughnuts are the only sweets that I like.

Hometown: Maoming, Guangdong, China

High School: Maoming No.1 High School

Major: Economics and Quantitative Finance

Minor: Mathematics

Favorite Business Courses: Time Series Analysis, International Finance and Payments, Financial Modeling and Risk Analysis, Mathematical Finance

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

Peer Assisted Study Session (P.A.S.S) Leader for ECON 200 ( Principles of Macroeconomics): As a PASS leader, I am responsible of holding and facilitate two one-hour tutoring session every week and helping students develop effective study routines, assisting professors by offering additional resources to students outside of lectures and designated office hours.

Leader for International Network & Knowledge Program (LINKer): I was a LINKer for two years from 2014 to 2016. As a linker, I served as an orientation guide for international students, co-host the annual International Students Leadership Conference, and supported initiatives to recruit new international students for James Madison University. In addition, I also assisted the Office of International Program in recruiting new LINKers and creating promotional videos to increase visibility of the LINK program and the international community on campus.

Student facilitator, JMU College of Business Sophomore Conference: Assisted faculty and alumni facilitator in presentation and workshop sessions; presented to approximately over 60 students about how active involvement on campus benefits professional development.

Academic Affairs Chair, Chinese Students & Scholars Association on campus: During my term as an Academic Affairs Chair, I initiated the Chinese Buddy & Class Tutor Program. The purpose of this program is to promote cross-cultural dialogues on campus as well as offer academic assistance to American students who are taking Chinese classes.

Student Presenter, JMU College of Business Academic Open House: I was invited by the Economics Department Head and the Finance Department Head to present at the Open House. I presented at both the Economics major session and the Finance/Quantitative Finance major session. I shared my personal stories at College of Business (internship experience, study abroad experience in Italy, competition…) with prospective students and their families and answered questions that they had.

Career Educator at the Career and Academic Planning Center (CAP) on campus: Last year, I worked as a Career Educator at the school’s Career and Academic Planning Center (CAP). My main responsibilities include holding office hours to review students’ resumes and cover letters, advising students on strategies for academic development, developing and presenting informational career outreach programs and assisting with big CAP events like the fall and spring Career & Internship Fair.


  • Nancy Revercomb Brubaker ’56 Endowed Scholarship, College of Business Scholarship
  • Sara C. Yakovac memorial Scholarship Fund, Economics Scholarship
  • Robert & Barbara Duke Scholar, James Madison Foundation Scholarship
  • Alexander L. & Joanne V. Gabbin Business Endowed Scholarship
  • Barkley Rosser, Sr. Memorial Economic Scholarship, Economics Scholarship
  • Phi Beta Kappa, National Liberal Arts and Science Honor Society
  • Beta Gamma Sigma, National Business Honor Society
  • President’s List: 5 semesters, Dean’s List: 3 semesters

Where have you interned during your college career? I was an intern doing economic consulting at the Economics & Valuation Services (EVS) Department at KPMG in their McLean office last summer.

Describe your dream Job: My dream job would involve helping companies or entities identify and quantify risks through complex modeling and offering strategic solutions to mitigate those risks.

Who is your favorite professor? Dr. Windsor Fields is my favorite professor at James Madison University. I took Principles of Macroeconomics with him during freshman year and two more advanced Economic classes with him later on. He is an awesome professor who really cares about students and has a passion for teaching. Dr. Fields is also my life mentor. He has helped me in so many ways. He gave me words of encouragement during times of frustration and played a very critical role in shaping my career path.

Which executive or entrepreneur do you most admire? Sheryl Sandberg. She is a great leader. She has made a huge impact in the whole world by advocating gender equality and enhancement of career opportunities and professional development for women in the work place.

What did you enjoy most about majoring in a business-related field? I enjoyed that the ever-changing nature of the business world challenges what we learn in classroom every day.

Where would you like to work after graduation? KPMG, Economic Consulting

What are your long-term professional goals? My long-term professional goal is to become a professional in my field, preferably in a leadership role which allows me to take on more challenges and greater responsibilities and be a mentor to someone.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? Start building meaningful relationships and professional connections early.

“I knew I wanted to major in business when…I read “Principles of Macroeconomics” by Gregory Mankiw.”

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be…majoring in forensic science because I am absolutely fascinated by the process of analyzing evidence and putting the pieces of puzzle together to solve a crime.”

“Before I entered business school, I wish I had known…soft skills are a crucial part of the curriculum.”

What was the happiest moment of your life? During every Chinese New Year’s Eve, my whole family would get together and we would make dumplings and count down New Year together. I haven’t been home for Chinese New Year for the past four years. Thinking back, this was definitely the happiest moment of the year and of my life.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of my job as a LINKer. As a LINKer, I help build the bridge between international community and local community on campus and advocating for the international community on campus. This job brought me closer to my own community and created a higher sense of belonging as I am an international student myself. During the past two years, I was given a lot of amazing opportunities which helped me develop intercultural competence and become a better leader.

What animal would you choose to represent your professional brand? Lion. The lion is the king of the jungle. It has excellent executive leadership skills. The lion is also fearless, which means it is willing to take risks and challenges when no one else wants to.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My parents. I am one of the few first generation college students among my peers. Also, I am one of the few first generation college students who study abroad among my peers. Due to the Cultural Revolution back in the 1970’s, my parents did not have the chance to go to college. So they were determined to provide their children with the privilege they never had. Growing up, my parents sacrificed so much time and money for me and my sister so that we could explore every possible opportunity that we want. Without their support, I wouldn’t be able to dream big; Without their support, I wouldn’t be able to come to the States to pursue a higher educational goal for myself. Without their support, I wouldn’t be the person that I am today.

What would you like your business school peers to say about you after you graduate from this program? “She’s a hard-working and passionate person who cares about others and helps people succeed.”

Favorite book: Love’s executioner, and other tales of psychotherapy by Irvin D. Yalom

Favorite movie: Inception directed by Christopher Nolan

Favorite musical performer: Adele

Favorite vacation spot: Venice

What are your hobbies? Listening to Jazz, travelling, reading crime fictions and books about psychology, and café and restaurant hopping

What made Carrie such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2017?

“An international student herself, Carrie has gone out of her way to help out other international students, and to make them feel welcome and included in our College. She has integrated into the American culture, and more specifically into the JMU culture without losing her own identity. She handles a very demanding academic program with ease, and possesses the intellectual curiosity that every professor dreams of in a student. She has overcome the career placement challenges that face all of our international students because of her warm personality and undeniable talent. KPMG is very lucky to have recruited Carrie.”

Molly Brown
Associate Dean for Undergraduate Programs
James Madison University


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