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Balancing Business and Technology
Janani Gopinath, Eller MBA ’16

By Liz Warren-Pederson


Janani Gopinath was born in India and grew up in Chennai in Southern India. “I lived there for 17 years and after that I moved to Singapore to pursue my undergrad degree in electrical and electronics engineering at Nanyang Technological University,” she said.

After graduation, she started work as a software firmware engineer. “My first job involved developing software for handheld printers,” she explained. “I then joined a satellite communications company. I developed software for handsets that are used in satellite communication terminals.” The role challenged her to design software, but also exposed her to a variety of roles in product management and software testing. “This gave me several opportunities to lead teams and work with clients from across the globe,” Gopinath said. “What I really loved about my job was the ability to actually see my visions for software come alive!”

Although she enjoyed software engineering, she saw herself contributing more in a product management role. “Being involved in the bigger picture of a product cycle – from its conception to the point where it enters a market, is what I have always felt I will be good at,” she said. “I knew that I had solid technical skills, but, to be a successful one, I felt like I needed strong business skills. That’s when I decided that I need to pursue an MBA.”

Gopinath chose Eller because of the reputation of its MIS specialization and world-class faculty. “I thought my experiences thus far, combined with an MBA focusing on MIS, would be the perfect launch pad for the career of my dreams,” she said. “Now, fast forward two months into the program, and I am very glad about my decision to enroll at Eller! I love how the class size is optimally built so that I not only get personalized interaction with the professors, but with also all of my classmates. I never knew I could make so many friends with people from diverse backgrounds in such a short time.”

As she prepares for her future, Gopinath said that the career management office has become an invaluable resource. “I love how they give students personalized attention and help us work on our weak areas,” she said. “The Mocktail session where we practiced our elevator pitches was one of the many events I have found useful so far.”

Gopinath aims to continue building her skills in technology and business through elective coursework. “I am very confident that the Eller MBA has already gotten me started in this journey to achieve my dreams.”

Top image courtesy Janani Gopinath.