MBA Fellow Establishes Williams-Sonoma's Water Strategy

Saumya Wali Headshot
During the summer of 2021, Saumya Wali (MBA/MPA '22) interned as an NYU Stern MBA Sustainability Fellow at Williams-Sonoma, Inc. Read on to learn more about her time there:

Name: Saumya Wali
Year: 2022
Specialization: Strategy, Sustainable Business and International Development
Briefly describe your internship experience (company, department, your focus projects/deliverables)
This summer I interned at Williams Sonoma on their Sustainability team. I worked with their Director of Environmental Impact on establishing a water strategy and framework for the company, as well as working with their Design and Merchandising teams to incorporate more circular design strategies, initiatives and infrastructure for their furniture items. The water project involved me doing research on other retailers' and competitors' water strategies and frameworks, potential organizations to partner with to execute these projects and analyzing William Sonoma's current water emission and consumption data. The circular project involved me understanding the design restrictions of making furniture more circular and researching potential third party solutions and vendors to help make this happen.
How will this experience add value to the rest of your time at Stern? How did it prepare you for your future career path?
One of my interests within social impact/sustainability is sustainable supply chains and this internship was a great experience in learning how the sourcing and supply chain department at a big retail company works. William Sonoma's Sustainability team is housed within their overall Sourcing department and over the course of my internship I was able to talk to sourcing managers to understand the overall Williams Sonoma supply chain. It was very helpful to understand the various levers involved and confirmed my interests in the subject matter! I loved the team. They were so passionate, easy to work with, knowledgeable and helpful. It was a great experience!