2019 Best & Brightest: Yoodong Hwang, Michigan State (Broad)

Yoodong Hwang

Michigan State University, Eli Broad College of Business

Unapologetically passionate about being professional at all times of the day.”

Fun fact about yourself: I applied to be the Bachelor on ABC’s The Bachelor

Hometown: Midland, Michigan

High School: Midland High School

Major: Finance

Minor: N/A

Favorite Business Course: FI 312: Introduction to Investments

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • President of Broad Student Senate
  • Undergraduate Keynote Speaker at the Edward J. Minskoff Pavilion Groundbreaking Ceremony
  • Director of Business Development at Spectrum Consulting Group
  • Director of Presidents’ Council for the Eli Broad College of Business
  • Founder of the Broad College of Business Mentorship Program

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • IBM, Procurement Services-Delivery Consultant Intern | Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Meijer, General Merchandise Inbound Logistics Intern | Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • GE Aviation, NPI Development Materials Planning Intern | Cincinnati, Ohio

Where will you be working after graduation? After graduation, I will be joining Ernst & Young as a People Advisory Services (PAS) staff consultant in the Chicago, IL, office.

What company do you admire most? Bain & Company. Bain was the first consulting firm that I researched when I was a senior in high school. Their consulting practice and model was the reason why I chose to pursue a career in consulting. I eventually learned about their Bain Capital venture started by Mitt Romney and Bill Bain and used it to learn about how firms spin and create new alternatives of business generation.

Who is your favorite professor? Professor Pedram Nezafat was my favorite professor at Michigan State University. Professor Nezafat taught FI 312: Introduction to Investments at 6:00 PM twice a week and made it fun to be in class. His old school method of teaching helped me to understand the basics of portfolio diversification and analysis.

What did you enjoy most about your business school? The Eli Broad College of Business is a place for exponential growth, but only if you choose to invest your time in the betterment of yourself and others. There are so many opportunities to get involved with student organizations and make lasting connections that will take you well beyond college. Once you get involved, leadership is earned, not given, and I think that is the reason why our student organizations on campus are so connected and well-received.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? Albus Dumbledore from the critically acclaimed Harry Potter books once told Harry Potter, “Help always comes to those who ask.” The same applies to those studying business. Whether it is with your homework, connecting you to people who work in industries you want to work in, or even supporting you to find an internship, people are always willing to help you if you ask them to support you.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? In most cases, students come to college with tunnel vision about the future of their endeavors, and it’s not a bad thing. Just remember, don’t be afraid to change things up because you will meet some amazing business students, and those students can change your world if you keep an open mind to continuously adapt to your environment.

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be majoring in or studying… Architecture. When I was young, I used to build hotel and airplane models out of Legos and thought I would be good at designing things. Then I got older and figured out that it was just a time of creativity and exploration for me.”

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? I wanted to pursue a career where I could find myself in future leadership roles, and my father was the biggest supporter for me to study business at Michigan State University. He knew about my passion for leadership and wanted me to think about career avenues where I could help the greatest number of people.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of my time as president of Broad Student Senate. The reason I chose this achievement is because I knew it was the role I wanted since freshman year, and it didn’t come easy. I worked to build my personal brand and share the ideas that I thought could be the most value-add to our organization and the business college. During my time as Senate President, we were able to mix passion and pride for the work we were accomplishing, and that was empowering for a lot of our members. We also created a partnership with ITEC of Lansing in which we donated funds to support youth education in STEM careers. My experience as president of Broad Student Senate represents what it means to take advantage of the time you have at Michigan State University.

Which classmate do you most admire? Ethan Thomas best exemplifies what it means to be a student leader at Michigan State University. Even though I am a little salty he became president of Spectrum Consulting Group, he has filled the role perfectly, and his leadership has carried our organization to grow revenues by 16x year-over-year. He is the poster child for the Financial Markets Institute and has a great career set up for himself in investment banking. Ethan is a great friend and someone who will represent the Michigan State University name very well in the future.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I want to say thank you to my mother. If you ever meet her, you’ll understand where I get my passionate spirit and fiery attitude. She put me in my place every day in high school, but in college she let me make my own decisions about my future. Some of those decisions ended in phone calls where she would be upset about a grade I got in class or why I spent so much money on clothes all at once. Most times, though, she was the most empathetic person in my life, especially at times when I needed her most. Mom, I love you!

What are the top two items on your bucket list?

  • To eat at all the restaurants on The y00ds Food List, which is a list compiled of restaurants from recommendations or found on Instagram, Eater, Food Network, Travel Channel, Gordon Ramsay’s YouTube channel, etc.
  • To start my own consulting firm with my best friend

What are your hobbies? Writing, reading, eating at local eateries, traveling, watching repeats of HBO’s Game of Thrones, The Office, and Friends

What made Yoodong such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2019?

“As president and past-president of the Broad Student Senate, Yoodong Hwang is known as a positive role model and leader for other students in the Broad College of Business. As coordinator of a spring corporate visit, he has helped plan professional development sessions with the career management team to help students be better prepared to meet with companies. Yoodong also served as an emcee at the college-wide semester graduation planning and celebration event. Yoodong is inquisitive, helpful and not afraid to make decisions and take risks to make the Broad College a better environment for everyone.”

Kristen Hintz
Associate Director
Lear Career Services and Graduate Career Management

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