Why I Coach—Conrad Ukropina

Conrad U., an expert Leland coach and former McKinsey Consultant, outlines why he chooses to coach and what it means to him.

Conrad U.

By Conrad U.

Posted August 22, 2022

My life has been shaped by a series of great coaches across all phases of life, from becoming an All-American in college football to working with CEOs of Fortune 500 companies. Coaches have guided me through adversity, encouraged me to succeed, and taught me the power of accountability. Now at the Stanford GSB, I want to use what I have learned and coach others.

My freshman year of college, I joined the Stanford Football team as a preferred walk-on. For the first time in my life, I felt imposter syndrome. I wasn’t sure if I belonged – it was a tough, meritocratic environment. However, I found solace in my teammates and my coaches. They taught me to focus on the process, and let the outcomes take care of themselves. With their guidance, I was able to graduate with a with a B.S. and M.A. in four and a half years. As a team, we won three Pac-12 championships, and I set eight Stanford and PAC-12 placekicking records. The tough start pushed me to fully trust my coaches, building my confidence to be better than I initially imagined.

After undergrad, I worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Company in San Francisco. Just like on the football field, I found coaches in McKinsey partners who mentored me and helped me succeed in a professional setting. They encouraged me to apply to Stanford GSB and build my resume outside of the office.

While applying to business school, I built my test-taking skills through GRE preparation and tutoring. I also received valuable application and essay insights from full-time MBA tutors, Stanford professors, and McKinsey partners.

As a current GSB student, I am best equipped to help prospective MBA students build their application and resumes. My application to the GSB asked me, “what matters most and why?” and my answer was easy – coaching. I am excited to help coach others who are looking to take a similar path, and look forward to working with unique individuals like yourself.

Interested in working together on your MBA application? Click here for my Leland coaching profile.

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