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For select admitted students who demonstrate an interest in tech product management, product marketing management, brand management, and other marketing-related roles, Chicago Booth Admissions works in collaboration with the Kilts Center to offer the Kilts Fellowship. The Fellowship provides students with financial assistance; access to a curated alumni mentor network, and exclusive opportunities to engage with Booth faculty members. 

Since the program began in 2006, more than 100 Booth students have received the Fellowship. Past Fellows have gone into tech, CPG, pharmaceuticals, finance, and founded their own companies, and many hold senior leadership roles at Airbnb, Amazon, Starbucks, and American Express.

To learn more about the Fellowship and the impact it has, we sat down with former and current Fellows to hear about the role of the Kilts Center in their Booth experience.

What are some specific benefits you gained from your Fellowship?

Matt Lieberman, 18: The biggest benefit was the mentorship I received from Brad McLane, ‘83, of ZRG Partners. He has spent decades working in marketing and was a phenomenal resource to help me understand what internships and roles best matched both my short- and long-term career goals. There was no one better to offer guidance on how to best position myself for a leadership role in marketing. 
Sade Onadiji, 21: I’ve been able to more easily find and connect with my classmates who share my passion for marketing. Booth students have such great success post-MBA, so I have the unique opportunity to really get to know the future movers and shakers of the marketing industry on a deeper level.
Tess Belton, 21: The marketing network I've built has helped me narrow down which roles and companies are best for me. The Kilts Center asked the Fellows for ideas on which speakers to include in their Speaker Series. Since I'm interested in tech, I requested a few prominent tech marketing leaders and the Kilts Center organized a really impressive lineup. It was so cool to be a part of that process, and hearing from marketing leaders in tech reaffirmed that I made the right career choice.

How has the Fellowship changed your Booth experience?

Sade: The scholarship has been a huge blessing to me—I would not have been able to attend Booth if not for the financial component. Now, I can fully focus on making the most of my Booth experience, like being heavily involved in student organizations, taking academic risks, and spending time with my classmates and professors.
Tess: The Fellowship changed my approach to recruiting. I've gained access to prominent marketing alumni, an incredible mentor, and top-notch marketing professors who have all equipped me with the skills needed to make the pivot to a new industry. Also, I've become great friends with the other Fellows, which is a nice bonus!

The Kilts Center is at the heart of the Booth marketing community. How has being a Fellow helped you become a part of this community? 

Matt: The Kilts Fellows network is very strong and I reached out to several members of it when I was recruiting. Past Fellow Jeremy Schellin, ‘11, was influential in my decision to work at General Mills after graduation. 
Sade: It has helped me to feel closer to the faculty and staff working at and with the Kilts Center. This year I offered suggestions on how the Kilts Center can be better allies to the BIPOC community. I feel empowered to do that because the relationship I’ve built with the Kilts Center as a Fellow.
Tess: I've gotten to participate in many events with prominent marketing alumni. The Fellowship has allowed me to jump-start my marketing network, and I'm confident it will continue to grow as I progress through my marketing career.

What key learnings have you gained from your mentorship?

Matt: The most helpful takeaways from Brad's mentorship were around how different brand management can be across industries. He had worked across so many different industries and had a deep understanding of what brand management roles entail in each.
Sade: My mentor and past Fellow, Ryan Bennett, ’12, suggested that I explore finance and entrepreneurship to enhance my marketing career. Because of his advice, I believe I have a truly well-rounded skill set that will serve me well post-MBA. 
Tess: My mentor, Heather Mason, ’86, has introduced me to many marketing leaders in her extensive network. She taught me a helpful framework that she uses to navigate difficult career decisions, and always reminds me to keep things in perspective. I know she'll be a lifelong mentor and role model. 

What does being a Kilts Fellow mean to you? 

Matt: The real benefit is getting mentorship from senior marketing leaders and tapping into the close-knit Kilts Fellows network within the excellent, helpful, and broader Booth marketing network. 
Sade: I am an ambassador on behalf of the marketing community to the wider Booth community. I connect with both prospective and current students all the time about marketing courses, marketing recruiting at Booth, and opportunities offered by the Kilts Center, like the annual case competition. After I graduate, I think it’s important for me to help continue to grow Booth’s reputation as a marketing powerhouse.
Tess: It means that Booth is making an investment in me and supporting my marketing career goals. I'm proud to be a Fellow, and a spokesperson for Booth's investment in and contributions to the ever-increasing importance of marketing in today's data-driven business environment.  

To learn more about the Kilts Fellowship, click here.

Matt Lieberman, ’18, works in consumer insights at General Mills. 
Sade Onadiji, 21, joined Pfizer as part of its MBA Marketing Rotational Program. 
Tess Belton, 21, is currently a Product Marketing Manager at Facebook.