2018 Best EMBAs: Victor Limjoco, Wharton School

Victor Limjoco

University of Pennsylvania’s The Wharton School

Media pro, passionate about the intersection between media, technology, entrepreneurship, and strategy.”

Age: 37

Hometown: Cherry Hill, NJ

Fun fact about yourself: I’ve produced more than 485 stories for NBC News and earned three Emmys.

Undergraduate School and Degree:

BSJ, Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Majors: Journalism, Pre-Med. Minor in Political Science.

Where are you currently working?  Producer, NBC Nightly News, Comcast NBCUniversal

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles:

Founder, Employee Resource Group Asian-Pacific Americans at NBC News
Member, National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? For MKTG’s 711 “Consumer Behavior,” a marketing campaign that we pitched to a corporate client was not only accepted by the company, but it showed up on their corporate site a few days later. So fulfilling to see our simple homework turned into something real.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? We produced some of the first stories on the heroin epidemic back in 2014, and I had the opportunity to meet so many families across the country. Holding the hand of a father who hadn’t slept after his son overdosed on heroin. Crying with a mom about her son’s recovery. I’ve covered hurricanes, school shootings, and a plane crash on the Hudson River, but these stories about heroin shook me to my core.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? Professor John Paul MacDuffie, who taught our “Strategic Management of Human Assets” elective. He inspired me to think critically about how to motivate employees, how HR can propel business strategy, and how great talent can be sources of competitive advantage. I’m thankful for all of his life advice as well.

What was your favorite MBA course and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it? Professor Kartik Hosanagar’s “Technology and Entrepreneurship in India” global modular course in Bangalore, India. I learned so much about the passion needed for a startup, as the founder of “Paper Boat” brought us all to tears recalling how he started a company based on the tasty, authentic foods of his youth.

Why did you choose this executive MBA program? I’m from South Jersey, so Philly is home for me. And the residential requirement is a key differentiator for Wharton: the opportunity to stay overnight and get to know your classmates is absolutely critical. That’s beyond “networking,” it’s an opportunity to form real friendships.

What did you enjoy most about business school in general? I decided to go to business school because I wanted to carve a path to media management. I didn’t have any formal training in finance or accounting back in undergrad. But Wharton also taught me so much about strategy, entrepreneurship, analytics, human resources, operations, and marketing. Simply put: you don’t know what you don’t know. And that process of discovery is something that I’ll always be grateful to Wharton for. Also travelling to India, Japan, Argentina, and San Francisco to study entrepreneurship is pretty fun too!  

Give us a story during your time as an executive MBA on how you were able to juggle work, family and education? In the first semester, I was busy covering the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. I was running around the convention hall working with NBC Nightly News, then studying for my microeconomics and accounting final exams overnight. I couldn’t have done it without my family. And I have the best Wharton learning team and friends, Team Domin8 and Besties.

What advice would you give to a student looking to enter an executive MBA program? Students should really understand the time commitment involved. It’s a lot to juggle a demanding full-time job and schoolwork, and it’s absolutely critical to get the buy-in from your manager and co-workers. I’m so grateful to have had the support from NBC News.

What was your biggest regret in business school? I started keeping a journal in semester two, because I found that the class weekends started blurring together. I wish I had started week one, our “hell week,” when you have like 50 class hours crunched into five days.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? My classmate and friend Dr. Marie-Laure Romney, who gave birth to her third child in between Wharton class weekends. Not only is she remarkably smart, driven, and kind, but I really saw her fortitude during that time. She didn’t skip a beat, or any class for that matter. Somehow between her time as an ER doc, student, mom…Marie did all the class reading! Amazing.

If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be…not as aware of how to keep the media business thriving.”  

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? CEO of a media company 

In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? Victor is a geeky storyteller, who loves to learn, dances badly, and will be a kind titan of industry.

Favorite movie or television show: NBC Nightly News, duh

What are the top two items on your bucket list? Learn a new language and skydiving.

What made Victor such an invaluable addition to the class of 2018?

“Victor brought a unique perspective to the class as a journalist on a prominent national news broadcast, the Nightly News with Lester Holt on NBC. His journalism and TV background are not something we see often in the program. Victor’s ability to tell a story, see the importance of issues to a broader population, and work in a fast-paced, pressure-packed environment have been a gift for him, his teams, and his classmates more generally.

Perhaps more importantly, Victor is one of the nicest guys you’d ever meet. Quick with a kind word, a genuine “how are you” and a helping hand, Victor is someone everyone wants to be around. In preparing this nomination I went to look at emails I’ve received from Victor over the past two years. I found five thank you notes. Five! He thanked me for my accounting course; thanked us for creating the elective options we gave them for their second year; thanked us for and acknowledged the contributions of the math tutor we provide our students; thanked us for arranging their global experience in Buenos Aires; and just last week thanked me for the two years and “changing the lives of the 100+ students in the class.” In each of these thank you notes, Victor is clear about how he and others have benefited.

With regards to the course in Argentina, he noted how he would apply the lessons on culture and entrepreneurship at NBC and in the future. When thanking me for my accounting course, he wrote how he realized from the quantity of notes he was unpacking how much he had learned and how he wished he had done even better.  These thank yous and his kindness and generosity of spirit were not unique to me – he is this way with the class, faculty and staff in general. He is genuinely interested in learning and in connecting with people – two hallmarks of our program. I could not think of a better person to represent the Wharton MBA Program for Executives.”

Dr. Peggy Bishop Lane
Vice Dean, Wharton MBA Program for Executives

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