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Pursuing His Own Business Philosophy

Accelerator helps Braswell strengthen framework for problem solving

Carter Braswell
Investment Banking Analyst, Raymond James

Vanderbilt Accelerator 2018

Carter Braswell saw Accelerator as a way not only to prepare for the business world but for being a full-time student at Vanderbilt.

The Memphis native spent his freshman year in his hometown at Rhodes College, which he loved for its small size and close, mentoring relationships with faculty. But transferring to Vanderbilt, he believed, would give him valuable new experiences.

Accelerator helped him meet two objectives. While learning about business, he could also meet people with whom he could spend time over the next three years, since a significant number of participants in the program are Vanderbilt students.

Though Carter has long been interested in a business career, he chose to major in philosophy “as a means to think critically and independent of my own beliefs and to have empathy and understanding for the rest of the world.” Those abilities, he says, “will also help me develop a general framework for problem solving that can help me fulfill direct consumer needs and will traverse any vertical in business.”

The program helped him make the framework stronger. “Accelerator,” Carter says, “gives students the opportunity to rack up 120+ hours of live consulting experience with blue-chip companies as well as unique startups, then supplements that with 60+ hours of MBA-level instruction that directly correlates to your weekly projects on topics like product design, finance and consumer behavior.”

Ten years from now, if his current plan holds, Carter will have several years of consulting experience and a joint JD/MBA degree. And by then, he hopes, he’ll have a good idea of “what I want to do.”

But for now, that’s all up in the air — and he’s fine with it. “I came to Accelerator with a great deal of questions,” he says, “and if anything I left with more questions than I had entering the program. But that is one of the best things about Accelerator — it incites curiosity. I think it gave me the tools to learn not only what I want to do but what I am best at.”

Fun Fact: After Accelerator, Carter studied at the London School of Economics.

“I think it gave me the tools to learn not only what I want to do but what I am best at.”