Outstanding Student Award winner Deepika Khemani, MSBA ’20, served as an SGA officer, worked as a student assistant, and completed two internships—all during the COVID-19 pandemic. The confidence she gained and the support she received gave her the motivation to keep going.
“I saw GGU a top college for adult learners where I could work and study and there would be other students close to my age,” recalls Deepika. “I also liked that GGU was in the middle of the city where all the big IT companies are, right near the Salesforce tower. I thought, this is going to be a perfect fit.”
New Horizons at GGU
At GGU, Deepika was excited to connect with people from different backgrounds so she served as an SGA officer, where she helped host events—for Halloween, Christmas, and Diwali, among others—to make students feel at home because, like her, they were coming from different countries and backgrounds. She also worked as a student assistant with the admissions team on campus, which gave her greater exposure to faculty and the inner workings of a university.
“Lucky for me I was able to complete most of my courses before the pandemic hit, so I got to experience on-campus life,” reflects Deepika. “There were a lot of ups and downs as international students were not allowed to stay in the country for more than two semesters if we are taking classes online. GGU was really there for us at every stage to help us navigate our way through.”
During her last semester, Deepika interned at real estate company Open Door and MetricStream, a Palo Alto software company in the Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance arena that has a partnership with GGU.
“At MetricStream,” Deepika explained, “they had a thousand-plus contracts with clients and we had to figure out a way to make a system to find the renewal date for all contracts. We used text analytics and Python to build an algorithm that would allow us to automate this process.”
Deepika’s internships proved instrumental in helping her secure a full-time role as a marketing analyst with Thrive Global in San Francisco where she works today. She received her STEM OPT and was helped with the application process that enables her to work in the United States.
“My confidence increased at GGU because I took on so many roles that involved communicating with people. That helped me navigate interviews and show the leadership skills I gained by taking part in the SGA. On the job, I use what I learned in my SQL, Tableau, and Business Intelligence courses every single day. Every activity I was involved in played a role in what I am doing now for my career.”