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  • "Five Minutes with" a Second-Year MBA...finally!

    Rebeca Zapata; Marketing and Finance
    Rebeca Zapata; Marketing and Finance

    After reviewing the previous string of "Five Minutes With..." I realized that we have a lot of first-year MBA's!  So, this week I decided to feature a second-year MBA.  Rebeca Zapata comes to Illinois from Caracas, Venezuela.  Before starting her MBA, she was an assistant brand manager for Revlon.

    Now that she is about to graduate, Rebeca has decided to focus on Marketing and Finance.  In her spare time, when she is not searching for her next career, Rebeca likes to participate in various outdoor activities, travel(even if it is just to Indianapolis), hang out with friends, and of course, "FOOD!"

    Read more to learn about Rebeca!

    Thanks for sitting down with us this week Rebeca! Ok, question one, tell me about the worst boss you've ever had.  That's an easy one! It was my first boss there at my previous job.  She was the Brand Manager of beauty care, fragrances and beauty tools. We actually had great chemistry; she was a fun outgoing person and we shared same interests in fashion, career objectives, food, the beach. All in all I thought it would be someone easy to work with and that we could have an open conversation about pretty much everything.  But... as I got more into my daily activities and projects and deadlines, I noticed that she gave us (me and the other assistant brand manager) all the work and none of the credit.  At one point I wasn’t even sure what she did all day!!  I was swamped with product presentations, sales reports, agency meetings and I constantly saw her taking 2 hours lunches, leaving early and getting in passed 10am!  The worst part is that top management didn’t seem to care, because she delivered results... results that me and my coworker were the ones actually delivering  because she had very firm connections with the general manager and pretty much everyone so there was little we could do [Oh my…I am frustrated just listening to you!] Eventually I was transferred to another category/brand, so things got a lot better. My "personal" relationship with her got better because I really liked her as a friend, but as a boss she was just awful.


    If you could be a sushi roll - what would you be and why?  There is this roll called "Special Dragon" back home [in Venezuela] at my favorite sushi place.  That's definately the roll I would be. It's has shrimp, salmon, and crab meat, cream cheese, green onions, and a spicy sauce. As you can see, a whole bunch of random ingredients! Kind of like me…my personality is definitely a mix of outgoing, social, friendly, stubborn, caring, and a bit aggressive at times. And I go from up to down in like 5 seconds!!


    If we flew you to Antarctica, what would be the first thing you would ask a local when you got there?  Where can I find the penguins?  I'm IN LOVE with animals


    Who would win in a fight: a ninja or a pirate? […with no hesitation…] Pirate because they have their sneaky ways...they would probably manipulate you to give them your ninja swords [But, what if ninjas have moves that are more powerful than swords?] I think mind goes over physical power!  [Excellent point!]


    And finally, what has been your favorite thing about your MBA experience?  Definitely the people that I've met here. From my classmates to the friends that I have met ramdomly. I have got to know so much about cultures that I knew nothing about, and I'm a people person so getting to know so many people and having the chance to live with them day by day for one and a half years has been amazing. I’ve definitely made friends for life at U of I! [Awe, well said!]