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Getting Down to Personal Scale

For Savannah Cavanaugh, small program meant outsized opportunity

Savannah Cavanaugh
Senior Analyst, Strategic Business Development, Dell Technologies

Vanderbilt MBA 2021

When she arrived at Vanderbilt to pursue a graduate business degree, Savannah Cavanaugh already was a business school graduate. As an undergrad, she had earned a degree in Finance, with minors in Accounting and Advertising, from the University of Texas. But as she considered her options for an MBA, she wanted an experience that was on a personal scale.

“I got the big-school experience in undergrad,” Savannah explains, “but for my MBA I was looking for a smaller program with a tight-knit community.” That pointed her toward Vanderbilt.

The Nashville location had something to do with Savannah’s choice, too. “I came [for a campus visit] during the NFL draft,” she says, “and absolutely fell in love with this city’s energy, the campus, and spring weather.”

The smaller, more intimate class size has impacted almost every facet of Savannah’s Vanderbilt experience, from her ability to participate in in-class discussions (which she counts as a highlight of her time in the program) to interacting with alumni and fellow students. “Having a smaller program size has led me to know my classmates on a personal level, with friendships that will last far beyond business school,” she says.

The program’s size also has enabled her to take part in and make genuine contributions to a variety of student organizations and programs, from Student Government to the Owen Marketing Association to the Owen Texas Club (yes, there is a Texas Club). And because the program is both inclusive and diverse, Savannah believes she has benefited in ways that go far beyond what she learns in the classroom. “By collaborating with such different people than me, I know I will be a better business leader for it,” she says.

In Savannah’s case, a small program meant outsized opportunity. “I never had the opportunity to get on a personal level like I do at Vandy because of the sheer size,” she says. “I have never had so many resources when helping me recruit for an internship as I do here. The professionalism Vanderbilt has is unmatched, and the personal touch is wonderful. Vanderbilt Business sets a higher standard for future leaders of corporate America.”

Fun Fact: Savannah is inspired by her grandfather, who invented a knife sharpener in his garage that grew into a family business of more than 50 products sold in 54 countries.

I have never had so many resources when helping me recruit for an internship as I do here.