Erin Whalen, MBA ’13

Erin WhalenName: Erin Whalen
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Undergrad Institution/Major: University of Texas at Austin/Marketing
Pre-MBA Job: Marketing Director & Entrepreneur
MBA Concentration: Consulting

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Hi! My name is Erin Whalen, and I am returning to McCombs after ten years in the “real world” to pursue my MBA. I received my BBA here in 2001, majoring in marketing. Since then, I’ve worked in the renewable energy industry and the disaster restoration industry. However, what I’ve enjoyed most is starting two successful companies. My last company, Grease Monkey Wipes, became an overnight success when my business partner and I pitched it on ABC’s Shark Tank. With that success came the realization that an MBA was a necessity to get to the next level… and here I am!

I chose McCombs for a number of reasons, including the professors, the students, the resources, and the location. I still remember my favorite undergraduate professors (Irwin, Broniarcyzk, Srinivasan, Daly) and I am so excited to take the same caliber of classes again. During preview events, I was extremely impressed by my potential fellow students – their backgrounds and motivations to attend school were so diverse and interesting. Additionally, the resources of McCombs are unmatched, as well as the resources within Austin. (Austin is such a hub for entrepreneurs!) When it all came down to it, I ultimately couldn’t imagine leaving my network or my alma mater – I knew that I would forever regret not coming back to Texas.

Outside of school, I enjoy the local art scene, taking improv classes, traveling, and taking advantage of all the active elements of Austin. I like to think I’ve logged as many miles running, biking and swimming around town as I have driving. (Not quite!)

I am excited to be a MBA blogger so I can share my MBA experience with others. As an entrepreneur, I didn’t “need” an MBA in order to continue my career. However, I knew that what I will learn at McCombs will be invaluable as I start my next ventures. Please contact me if you have any questions about McCombs, marketing and entrepreneurship, Austin, or anything else! My email is

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