2022 Best & Brightest Executive MBA: Christian Blanchet, New York University (Stern)

Christian Blanchet

New York University, Stern School of Business (New York City)

Age: 34

“Former professional golfer turned fashion entrepreneur with the mindset of helping others succeed before myself.”

Hometown: Gainesville, FL

Family Members: Brother: Chandler Blanchet; Sister: Nicole Mullally

Fun fact about yourself: Former NCAA Academic All-American and professional golfer, recorded 7 hole-in-ones, and carded a low competitive score of 62.

Undergraduate School and Degree: B.S. University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL

Where are you currently working? Sales manager at the brand Mackage, & founder of men’s swimwear and travelwear brand Marèa Maréa.

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles: NCAA Academic All-American in Men’s Golf, University of South Alabama. Featured in Stern Somebody, a series in the graduate student-run paper The Oppy, which highlights NYU Stern students and the impact they are making on the world. Mentor, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? One of the core Executive MBA classes I was most excited to take (but also most intimidated by) when entering the program was Financial Accounting with Professor Guttman. I felt this was a critical course for my development and a topic foreign from my current day-to-day work. By the end of the semester, not only had I passed the course, but I was able to apply the learnings when building out preliminary financial statements for Marèa Maréa.

What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? I’m most proud of my decision to pivot both my career and life from professional golfer living in Alabama to fashion executive living in New York City. Without having any contacts in the fashion industry and no real connection to New York City, it took a leap of faith, a lot of hard work, and a handful of great and supportive people to get to where I am at today.

Who was your favorite MBA professor? My favorite professor is Thomaï Serdari – an expert in luxury marketing and branding. Professor Serdari’s knowledge about the luxury industry is invaluable, and her class on Luxury Marketing has been incredibly influential in shaping my views on high-end fashion.

Why did you choose this school’s executive MBA program? I chose NYU Stern for three reasons: First, I wanted to have my home base and build my network in the middle of Manhattan. Second, I wanted to surround myself with individuals of diverse professional and personal backgrounds. Finally, I wanted a curriculum and faculty that supported entrepreneurship.

What is the biggest lesson you gained during your MBA and how did you apply it at work? One of the biggest takeaways from the Stern Executive MBA program is a confidence and understanding that no matter how successful or accomplished you are, you still have to put in the work and figure it out. Each of us has our own comfort zones, and it is necessary to step outside of those zones in order to grow. You don’t always have the answer, but you do have to have the wherewithal and desire to learn from others who can help guide you along the way. I have taken this perspective with me to work as a way to take on more intimidating projects and to work outside my comfort zone.

Give us a story during your time as an executive MBA on how you were able to juggle work, family and education? Between launching my brand Marèa Maréa, managing the Mackage North America business, going back to school, living through a pandemic, and getting newly married, the last two years have been a full plate to say the least. I believe two things have helped me balance all of these priorities: the first is patience with yourself and those around you, as no matter how hard you try, things will not go as smoothly as planned. The second is having a strong support system. Whether it is a partner, boss, friend, or fellow classmate, you need to have someone in your corner that you can lean on when times get hectic.

What is the biggest myth about going back to school Getting your MBA from a top business school is an intimidating thought. In reality, going back to school can be just as nerve wracking for any of the other dozens of people in your cohort. You all end up coming together to better yourselves, your career, and each other along the way.

What was your biggest regret in business school? I honestly don’t have any.

Which MBA classmate do you most admire? I refuse to pick just one: Amelia Greene is the co-founder of Women in Chemicals – a non-profit organization empowering women in the chemicals industry. Amelia’s ability to take on any project and get it across the finish line is legendary. Jaron Ross is co-founder of Everyday Weekend, a spirits company elevating the ready-to-drink cocktail experience. Jaron’s creativity and ability to connect with others is enviable. Curtis Loop is vice president of business operations at Golden Age Golf Auctions, a platform redefining the future of golf memorabilia. Curtis is taking on an industry and he is redefining it for present and future golf enthusiasts everywhere. Pablo Mares is my co-founder of Marèa Maréa and Project Finance Banker. Pablo has the unique ability to inspire and draw the best out of others, which is ultimately how we collaborated in the creation of Marèa Maréa.

What was the main reason you chose an executive MBA program over part-time or online alternatives?  I chose an Executive MBA over other alternatives because I wanted to take classes with professionals who were already 10+ years’ deep into their careers and to learn from their experiences and point of views just as much as from the professors teaching the classes.

What is your ultimate long-term professional goal? One of my goals is to grow the Marèa Maréa brand to a point of acquisition by a leading luxury conglomerate. Beyond that, I want to lead other creative brands and organizations at the CEO level and help to grow them from both a financial and product perspective.   

What made Christian such an invaluable addition to the class of 2022?

“As a former professional golfer turned fashion entrepreneur, Christian Blanchet brings a unique perspective to the NYU Stern Executive MBA cohort. Christian demonstrates the drive, initiative, and creativity that we look for in our Executive MBA students. We noticed this from the start when he took the lead to design customized EMBA-branded clothing for his cohort, and even launched his brand on men’s swimwear, all while juggling the demands of the program. At Stern, our hope is that students will leverage the most that they can out of our program, by building connections with each other and directly applying their learnings from our curriculum to their work. Christian has done just that with the launch of Marèa Maréa with one of his classmates and with his continued dedication to drawing on NYU Stern’s unique value of being in New York City–a place deeply connected to fashion and luxury brands.”

Alanna Valdez
Assistant Dean, Executive Programs

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