H@H: Ep 77 – Newly elected EWMBA Association EVP for Communications, Marissa Maliwanag joins host, Adam Ward on this week’s episode of Here@Haas. Marissa shares why her passion for serving her community led her to run for the EWMBA Association Executive Board, why intersectionality is so important to her, and why her vacation reading material was a sign that she should embark on the MBA.
Marissa shares one of the lightbulb moments pointing her to the MBA
“I was on vacation with some friends and a girlfriend pointed out that I was reading HBR [Harvard Business Review] to relax and have fun. And she said, ‘That’s not how you’re supposed to read on vacation!’ And so for me, recognizing that at that moment, if I’m still on vacation, relaxing and still trying to grow, I really needed to be in an environment that would foster that.”
Why serving her local community is so deeply rooted
“My dad had this saying growing up that charity starts at home. What he meant by that was before you go and try and change the whole world, can you do something just for our family?
Can you do something for our local community that would make a difference? And that stuck with me. One example he used regularly was: Can you just call your grandparents? Like they would be so happy to hear from you and that doesn’t cost you anything. So just something as simple as that. I moved to Berkeley for my MBA and this is my new home and I wanted to serve.”
Why diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, and justice is so critical to her mission
“I’m mixed, so I’m half Filipino and mostly Italian. I grew up in California and I’m close with both sides of my family and I never felt different in my own family. But then when I went on to study sciences, then maybe I was one of the few women in the room, and then in business that happens again. Maybe you’re the only woman and the only person of color in the room.
And I think that I didn’t recognize that that was unique or that I was doing that at such a young age until it was pointed out to me. What I always think about is if I’m going to rise, how can I help bring up others around me?”