A great leader is someone who can personally identify with the people she leads.

That’s what is so wonderful about this year’s Graduate Business Council: its president (your president) Catherine Farrell is both a leader and a friend; as passionate as she is approachable; and a true embodiment of the student interests she works to protect.

“My journey to my MBA was not very traditional,” she recalls. “I taught kindergarten in London, England and high school History here in Canada.”

Coming from a non-linear and inter-disciplinary academic path has perhaps strengthened her conviction that this is where she belongs. “I’m passionate about business,” Catherine says. “Doing my MBA allows me to be really versatile in my career.”

Now a self-possessed and effective leader, student, and businesswoman, Catherine happily admits to her own moments of uncertainty and anticipation along the journey —  emotions that definitely characterize an authentic student experience, and which connect her even more closely to her peers.

“Running for president was definitely something that pushed me out of my comfort zone,” she recalls.  “You’re the centre of attention, which is scary! But I love being involved in the Schulich community so much that I knew I had to do it.”

The role has been an exciting and rewarding one so far; as Catherine gears up for an action-packed year, she brings a mandate to foster a truly positive, productive and inclusive Schulich community to her new role.

Her final word of advice for students?

“The graduate student experience is what you make of it. I really tried to take advantage of every opportunity I had and that’s made all the difference.” Catherine emphasizes that she’s never been one to simply come to school, go to class and go home. “That’s just not the entire experience,” Catherine reminds us. “By getting involved with the GBC I’ve had the chance to meet so many different people and participate in making change for our student population.”

Learn more about Catherine and the GBC by visiting: http://gbc.schulich.yorku.ca/.