I'm Meredith Estren - you could classify me as a young professional who aspires to be many things: baker, gourmet chef, restauranteur, businesswoman extraordinaire, or airline and hotel mogul, depending on the day. I come from northern Virginia - a suburb of Washington, DC, and majored in mechanical engineering and minored in music performance at Duke. I have played the viola since elementary school and was section leader of the Duke Symphony Orchestra. After studying abroad in Australia the fall semester of my junior year, I decided to pursue a career in consulting, due to my interest in problem-solving and passion for traveling that I discovered when I was abroad.
The fall of my senior year, I applied to many consulting companies and eventually decided to work for L.E.K Consulting, a strategy consulting firm in Boston. I spent the time in between graduation and my job start traveling Europe and returning to Australia. Part of the reason I joined L.E.K. was because it was a fairly small firm with a strategy focus but most importantly had offices all over the world. I did work on everything from retail companies to software companies to airlines (a particular interest of mine to combine my obsession with travel with the business that makes it possible), sometimes working incredibly long and exhausting hours but making amazing friends who have now become like another family to me.
After working at the firm for about a year and a half, I got my transfer to our Sydney office approved and I made the epic leap across the world at the beginning of 2012. I've been living in Sydney for two years now and aside from being absurdly far away from my family and all my closest friends, it's been a paradise-like environment. Outside of work I'm involved in a community orchestra and a volunteering group called Women's Space who helps street-based sex workers in disadvantaged areas of Sydney. I also have thoroughly explored Australia and Southeast Asia thanks to a project placement in the Philippines. If you are ever in Australia, please contact me immediately because I must say my knowlegde of the bar and restaurant scene is pretty amazing.
The next step for me is London Business School, where I will be in their two year MBA program. As sad as I will be to leave the incredible weather and sheer beauty of this country, I am more than ready to go back to school, make a career change, be a bit closer to everyone back in America, and begin my exploration of Europe!
One of the best decisions of my life was deciding to apply to the Baldwin Scholars program. I can not even imagine what my life would be like without this incredible network of women. Everyone is enthusiastic, passionate, and absolutely amazing in her own unique way. They provide inspiration for me every day and never fail to boost my confidence when I'm feeling down. This program has expanded my horizons and changed my perspective on a multitude of issues. I know that this network of amazing women will be with me for the rest of my life. I can not wait to see what we will accomplish as a group in the future.
Please feel free to email me if you have any questions about the program, Duke, Australia, consulting, business, or really anything. I love connecting with current Baldwins!