Leaving Her Mark On and Off the Court
Yagmur Akgul ’18 / Istanbul, Turkey
“If I had to give a short description of myself at Babson, I would say: ‘Turkish student-athlete.’ Tennis has always been a huge part of my life—at 14, I was selected to be on Turkey’s national tennis team, and one of my proudest moments is when I carried our flag in front of thousands of people at an opening ceremony with the national anthem playing.
“Athletics helped inspire our business idea in my Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship (FME) course.”
“I knew I would spend much of my time at college with my teammates, and when I visited Babson’s campus, the tennis team made me feel right at home. That connection with my future teammates—as well as my desire to study business—was a big reason I applied to Babson. In my first year, our team’s hard work has already paid off—we just won the second conference title in the history of Babson women’s tennis, and I beat some of the top players in Division III tennis!
“My early tennis success has shown me I’m capable of achieving much more at Babson off the court, too. For example, athletics helped inspire our business idea in my Foundations of Management and Entrepreneurship (FME) course. Our FME business is called Toasty Buns, and our product is a portable chair with a layer under the seat where you can put heating pads to keep your body warm. It’s perfect for fans outside watching sports games, or just people sitting on their porch in cold weather.
“Tennis requires a big-time commitment, but I have still been able to take advantage of the many great opportunities Babson provides. In addition to being the tennis manager, I’m involved with Best Buddies, the Babson International Student Organization, and the Center for Women’s Entrepreneurship and Leadership (CWEL). It’s hard sometimes to be away from my family, but all these organizations have helped me make new friendships and feel like a part of the Babson community.
“Even though I’ve only been at Babson for a few months, I have been introduced to so many new people and perspectives both in and out of the classroom. Babson’s community is very international, which means every class discussion gives you an opportunity to hear different insights and ideas from classmates with diverse cultural backgrounds. As I pursue my passions and continue to explore new career paths at Babson, I can’t wait to see what new experiences lie ahead of me.”