Wednesday, October 9, 2013


Irit Biran

Marketing & Entrepreneurship
President, Rutgers Women in Business

Irit is a second-year international student in the full-time MBA program.  She is involved in the Israeli startup scene in NYC and hopes to organize a Rutgers business trip to Israel in the future.  If you know Irit you are probably aware of her passion for technology and entrepreneurship (and jewelry!), and most likely you know how to pronounce her name.  But I bet you didn't know this: her name means “asphodel” in Hebrew. 

Tell us about yourself and your journey to RBS.
Hi, my name is Irit (pronounced ee-reet, and yes, it’s Israeli…it means: asphodel). I was born in Germany, grew up in Israel, and have lived in New Jersey since August 2012. I moved here to pursue my MBA, and to experience living and working in the US. After serving in the Israeli military (as mandatory for all men and women), I completed my undergrad in Computer Engineering (which is pretty common among Israelis, not so much for women though).
Asphodels (in case, like me, you had no clue what that was)
Technology is a huge passion of mine. I loved working in that field.  I worked in big corporations, medium-sized companies, as well as startups, but in 6 years doing this, I found myself most intrigued by the business-side of things. Having that deep understanding of how technology products and services work, as well as what it takes to get to that point that it is ‘ready for use’ by the customer – is so rewarding.  Yet, what is most needed when it gets to this point is great marketing, and that’s where I feel I’m valuable – having that unique combination of technology expertise and business skills.

What is your favorite thing about being an RBS student?
This is something I felt after only one month at RBS: the opportunities. I have met so many people – students, faculty, and company representatives – with such diverse backgrounds and stories.  Attending corporate presentations, conferences, and career fairs have allowed me to gain exposure to various industries and individuals.  Being in business school is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get to know people who you otherwise wouldn’t have interacted with.

What is your favorite class at RBS so far?
I really enjoyed Marketing Strategy with Professor Sharan Jagpal. This class is unconventional and counter-intuitive to any other marketing class I have taken so far.  He uses so many interesting concepts and innovative view points to frame class discussion and case analyses. Brilliant professor, with a heart of gold.

How did you get your summer internship and how was it?
Networking, and some more networking. I knew I wanted to work in a startup company. At this point in my career there is nothing more exciting for me than taking part of the promotion, development, and strategy of a young company with a promising, great idea!
I searched for companies online, followed them, emailed them, went to career fairs dedicated to startups, and attended tech conferences. I got offers from a few startups in the city, and ended up as a Marketing & Business Development intern at a company that is growing at a crazy fast pace, with extremely professional people, who I learned a lot from.

Where do you see yourself in 15 years? 
Warning: this is going to be a cheesy answer, getting cheesier by the minute...
As a believer in Singularity, I anticipate amazing things will happen 15 years from now. I want to always stay on top of the most cutting-edge technology and medicine, and to take part of promoting the wonderful advancements that are expected in the future.
Most of all, I want to be surrounded by family and friends who are with me today, and have more and more people whom I love by my side.  I hope that in 15 years we will all be optimistic, healthy, happy, (not necessarily) older and wiser.

What do you do for fun?
True bliss: having a beer on the beach.  I also love… music, live concerts, comedies, The Sopranos, mostly any type of food, Pilates, Kickboxing, rollercoasters, traveling (so far Brazil was my favorite), hanging out with friends and family, tech articles and videos, quoting Seinfeld, photography, scented candles, singing in the car, award shows, jewelry (obsessed), interior design, and cupcakes with sprinkles on top.
Villarrica, Chile
 What else should we know about Irit?
Two fun facts: 1--I have cried at every concert I’ve ever attended. Watching these musicians put their heart and soul into their music moves me to no end. 2--I have to look up every actor on IMDB while watching a movie. This irritates the hell out of my friends.

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