Know No Fear
PROVO, Utah – Nov 04, 2020 – While most people may see COVID-19 as a setback, Ruchika Goel, a recent BYU Marriott School of Business MBA alum, saw the pandemic as the universe telling her to start a company. This isn’t the first time Goel has taken risks: six years ago, she left her home country of India and moved to America. Starting her own company during a global pandemic seemed doable too.
On 1 January 2015, Goel bravely made the thirty-six-hour journey from India to Utah. She had previously married her college sweetheart in India and was tired of being in a long-distance relationship. Goel quit her job at General Electric, packed her things, and flew around the world to join her husband, Anup, who had recently finished his master’s program at Arizona State University and was currently working in Utah.
“We fell in love with Utah,” Goel explains. “I had never lived near mountains before, so having the ability to drive a few minutes from home into a canyon and be engulfed by its beauty was a magical experience for us.”
Sadly for Goel, her time in Utah did not last long. Before the end of the year, the couple moved to New Jersey for Anup’s new job. Although they enjoyed their time in New Jersey, Goel missed Utah.
After a few years in New Jersey, Goel decided to pursue an MBA. Although her visa would not allow her to work, she could attend school, and she was ready for the challenge. . She saw earning her MBA as the perfect excuse to move back to Utah. “I found a picture of BYU’s campus up against the mountain. I printed it out, taped it on my wall, and made that my goal,” Goel says. Believing in his wife, Anup supported her fully in her desire to attain an MBA and move back to Utah.
After her acceptance to BYU Marriott’s MBA program, Goel moved back to Utah. While working on her MBA, Goel became involved with the BYU Marriott MBA Sherpa program. The Sherpa program pairs second-year MBA students (Sherpas) with first-year students (climbers). The Sherpas mentor and guide the climbers, and are especially valuable in helping the first-year students find internships. Through this experience, Goel realized how much she loved helping MBA students and what inspired her to start her company, Get On the Raft.
Get On the Raft provides MBA students around the world with the same support Goel found, both as a Climber and Sherpa. “At Get On the Raft, I help MBA students unlock their true potential in each step of their job search process through one-on-one personalized mentoring,” Goel explains. “I enable this by helping students bring their whole selves to the job search process and feel comfortable in their own skin.” The company launched in August 2020 and has already begun helping MBA students around the world.
Although the company has much more growing to do, Goel is proud of what she has already accomplished. “I have learned that if we choose to see challenges as an opportunity to do something amazing, we are much better off,” Goel says. “Whether it was my move from India to a country I had never been to before or starting a company amid the biggest pandemic in this century, optimism is the key to success.
Media Contact: Chad Little (801) 422-1512
Writer: Madi Wickham