Picture of Chris Hebig

Chris Hebig

United States Navy
MBA Candidate, Class of 2024
Owen Graduate School of Management

“I see the Bass Military Scholars as a way for me to share the powerful bond of community with others who genuinely believe in service. By sharing our unique perspectives, we can make each other stronger and ready to tackle our transitions and improve our community at Vanderbilt.”

Tell us about your military service. What did you do? Where did you serve? What do you value the most about your military service?

I was a Surface Warfare Officer in the Navy. I deployed multiple times to the Middle East and the Mediterranean Sea, where I directed shipboard evolutions and conducted maritime security operations. The community of close friends, advisors, and leaders from all ranks taught me an immeasurable amount about humble leadership. Through those around me, I learned the value of developing and supporting all members of my team to accomplish shared goals. The friendships I made will last lifetimes.

What are your thoughts on mentoring other students while at Vanderbilt? As a role model, what values do you want to share?

The most meaningful way to succeed is to help others succeed. True success in leadership is not about your own successes; it’s about the successes of your team and the development of your team members. I hope to share the importance of developing team members and helping them achieve goals.

While at Vanderbilt, what will be the focus of your studies and how do you plan to use this knowledge in your future career?

I am pursuing an MBA to get a better understanding of the strategic impacts that business has its sphere of influence beyond the bottom line. Learning about serving clients and customers is at the heart of business operations and I hope to help businesses better understand and serve their clients and customers.

What would you tell other veterans about the Bass Military Scholars Program?

Even before I joined the program, I was supported by several people who wanted to help me and my family in our transition. My wife and I were navigating the maze of laws associated with transferring her work license to Tennessee. Though not a member of the program yet, I was connected with several well-informed individuals who went out of their way to help us understand the local laws. Even had I not come to Vanderbilt, the program leaders and scholars genuinely promised to support me in my transition. Being surrounded by so many service-oriented people like this has really helped me find meaningful opportunities to serve my community out of uniform.