Our Stories

Making the Most of Open Doors

At Owen, Jacqueline Lim finds help and support at every turn

Jacqueline Lim
Manager, Deloitte Consulting

Vanderbilt MBA 2019

The first day of school in the first grade can be a bit intimidating for almost anyone.  So perhaps you can imagine what it was like or Jacqueline Lim, whose first-grade experience involved a new country and a language.

In 1993, Jacqueline’s parents moved from Canada, where Jacqueline was born, to Malaysia. “My parents strongly believe in truly living within a community,” she says, “so they enrolled me in public school, where the language of instruction was Malay. It was challenging to start first grade having to go around to each of my teachers and tell them I didn’t understand a word they were saying. But with dedicated teachers, my parents’ support and hard work and perseverance, I made it through. It was the best gift my parents could give me.”

After the family returned to Canada, where she went through undergraduate, Jacqueline found herself working for a large bank at the corporate office and focused on re-engineering and improving retail processes. “After a few years,” she says, “I realized that my career trajectory was going just fine, but it had little to do with me. I needed to take my career in my own hands." 

Starting an MBA program might not be quite as intimidating as starting school in a new country where you don’t know the language. But in her new environment at Vanderbilt, Jacqueline once again found it extremely important to be in a place where all you have to do for assistance is ask.

“I think the most helpful thing about the Vanderbilt team has been the open-door policy that everyone has. I have always been able to either get a quick appointment or walk into anyone’s office to chat if I needed to talk through a situation, get advice, or just get confirmation that things are going well with the recruiting process or classes. There have been so many small and large things that have come up over the past seven months where it was awesome just to know that I had a network of people to advise me on the best course of action.”

Fun Fact: Jacqueline and her friends have started a Saturday Supper Club, where they try to take a break and visit a new restaurant on Saturday nights. Among their favorites, she says: Two Ten Jack, Husk, and Umami.

“I think the most helpful thing about the Vanderbilt team has been the open-door policy that everyone has.”