Rishi Sunak: Finding out within the US “modified my life”

Rishi Sunak, pictured here at 11 Downing Street in 2021 when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer of the United Kingdom, studied business at Stanford University in the US. (© Simon Walker/HM Treasury)

Widening the field of possibilities is one of the lessons that Rishi Sunak, the UK’s new prime minister, says he learned from his business studies in Silicon Valley.

Rishi Sunak received his MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business in 2006. On October 24, he became, at age 42, the youngest prime minister of the United Kingdom in modern history and the first of Indian origin.

“At Stanford, you find yourself at the heart of an ecosystem and a culture unlike anything I’ve seen anywhere in the world,” said Rishi Sunak, in the morning prepare* in June. “Everyone has the desire to change the world, and people envision the most ambitious dreams, and the ecosystem around them. [de la Silicon Valley] support them in their effort to achieve them. 🇧🇷

study in the United States left me more open*”, he had previously confided.

Rishi Sunak studied at Stanford under the program Fulbright*, the premier US government exchange program. The Fulbright Scholarship was launched after World War II. The objective was to avoid future conflicts by providing opportunities for educational and cultural exchange and contact between Americans and citizens of other countries.

Since its inception more than 75 years ago, the Fulbright Program has enabled more than 400,000 American students, academics, professors, artists and professionals — and their foreign colleagues — to study, teach and conduct research abroad. Nationals from over 160 countries participated.

Today, Rishi Sunak has joined the ranks of 40 other alumni* in the Fulbright program having held the position of Head of State or Head of Government.

Before studying in the United States, Rishi Sunak worked in finance. He applied to Stanford to broaden his horizons and train for public service, says Derrick Bolton of Stanford Business School in Mercury news🇧🇷

At Stanford, Rishi Sunak met the one who would become his wife: Akshata Murty. They stayed in California for several years after graduating. Back in the UK, Rishi Sunak continued his career in finance before being elected Member of Parliament in 2015. “My experience in the US changed my life,” he said in 2021.

When he was Chancellor of the Exchequer (UK Finance Minister), Rishi Sunak oversaw the development of the plan to help communities, businesses and unemployed workers in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

*in English

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