From a young age, Ignacio Perez always understood the value of hard work. While growing up in Mexico City, he heard stories of how his great-grandfather worked as a miner to provide for his 11 children. Following in his footsteps, his grandfather began working to support their family while in elementary school. And, at 17 years old, Ignacio’s father began saving for a mechanical engineering degree. Hard work was in their blood.
With a passion for finance, Ignacio went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in finance from Monterrey Institute of Technology in Mexico City. Securing a job in private equity after graduation, Ignacio gained experience in analyzing, acquiring and growing companies across Mexico.
Throughout his career, Ignacio was surrounded by friends and colleagues with MBAs. He saw firsthand the valuable experiences, knowledge and connections they gained through their degrees. Wanting to make a long-lasting impact, Ignacio knew an MBA would round out his education in all areas of business.
Embracing the tight-knit community at Kellogg
Ignacio shares the three requirements he looked for in an MBA program: a strong sense of community, a well-rounded view about management and a rigorous private equity program. For Ignacio, Kellogg checked all of those boxes. When his wife, Tania, who was also interested in pursuing an MBA, got into Kellogg too, they were sold.
From day one at Kellogg, Ignacio reflects on the amazing friends he’s made and the emphasis on purpose within the close-knit community. Coming from Mexico City, Ignacio admits life in Evanston was full of change. Yet, he and Tania have fallen in love with the small-town charm Evanston offers.
"I love Evanston. It is the best of both worlds. One can enjoy being in a chill area where your friends live within a 15-minute walk and live next to Northwestern University's wonderful campus while having the opportunity to enjoy Chicago," said Ignacio.
From tennis club to corporate finance club, Ignacio is leveraging every opportunity he can to grow personally and professionally during his time at Kellogg. However, his favorite aspect of the Kellogg community is the pay-it-forward culture — including an especially impactful experience with the Consulting Club's interview preparation group. Every year, second-year students commit a large amount of time to help and prepare first-year students for interviews. This is driven purely by the incentive to pay forward the support they received during their first year.
In addition to his classmates, faculty have had a long-lasting impact on Ignacio's Kellogg experience. Wanting to develop stronger strategy, marketing and operation skill sets, Ignacio set out to explore these areas in his curriculum. So far, his favorite class is Professor Craig Garthwaite’s Business Strategy course. "Professor Garthwaite has an incredible ability to dissect more than 50 business business cases throughout the course," said Ignacio. This helped him gain a strong understanding of how strategic decisions can align with a company’s economic framework.
Through all these experiences and self-reflection, Ignacio plans to transition to management consulting post-Kellogg. He’s excited to help companies grow and create value in their surrounding communities. Wherever Ignacio ends up, it’s safe to say his hardworking family will be proud.