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Meet Our Alumni
Executive MBA Class of 2016
Hometown: Norfolk, VA
Undergraduate University: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Major/Minor: French Language and Literature
Current Employer: Office of the Governor, Commonwealth of Virginia
Current Position: Special Assistant to the Governor for Coastal Adaptation and Protection
- Why did you decide to pursue an MBA after completing your military service?
- I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do when I retired, but I kept coming back to school as an option. I didn’t have a master’s degree having been on active duty. I settled on an MBA because it was a piece of my professional background that I felt was very much absent. I had no real exposure to the business community. I went to a program day for the Executive MBA at William & Mary and I was so impressed by the quality of the professors and their willingness to engage and learn more about me personally that I applied to the program.
- How do you apply your MBA to what you’re doing now in your role for the state of Virginia?
- I use it every day. It’s been tremendously valuable. In some cases, its reinforced things that I did in the Navy like collaborative leadership and knowing how to build consensus among people who have different opinions than you. William & Mary also helped me to think differently about the challenges and issues I’m working on now and have a better understanding of things that are integral to my current role. This broader awareness wasn’t there before just because of a lack of exposure.
Executive MBA Class of 2015
Undergraduate University: Virginia Tech
Current Employer: The Language Group, LLC
Current Position: Managing Partner
- How would you describe the faculty and instruction you received during the program?
- The professors, all of them, use a level balance of diplomacy. They’re wonderful human beings. They were all equally impactful in teaching. They, alone, made the program worth every minute of investment in time and money. The content taught in Organizational Behavior is crucial for the success of an organization. I keep going back to some of the lessons the professor taught. The things I learned in Business Law and Ethics were so effective that I use it in decision-making, daily, here at my office. We all have different moral compasses which we’re calibrated by and this is critical. It may sound trivial, but the way the instructor framed and delivered the lesson was powerful.
- What were some key takeaways you continue to use professionally?
- The William & Mary Executive MBA program is quite possibly one of the best decisions of my life. It is one of the best experiences of my life. Aside from all of the work, it has given me the knowledge to better run my company, and has opened a valuable network of professionals that I would never be able to connect with if it weren’t for this program.
- What value has earning your MBA through the Executive MBA program brought to your work at The Language Group?
- The Executive MBA program is packaged so well that now I’m able to jump from department to department, discipline to discipline, and solve a myriad of problems. It taught me how to solve problems with colleagues who are peers and may not have the same viewpoint as me and how to make sure my goals are met while also meeting the goals of colleagues around me who have a different motivation – William & Mary gave me the tools to do this.
Executive MBA Class of 2014
Hometown: Richmond, VA
Undergraduate University: North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
Major/Minor:Bachelor’s in Architectural Engineering; Master’s in Construction Management
Current Employer: RMT Construction & Development Group
Current Position: Business Development & Marketing Consultant
- What appealed to you about William & Mary’s Executive MBA program?
- I looked at a lot of executive programs but I felt William & Mary to be the best. When I looked at the types of people I came across throughout my life who had gone to William & Mary – undergraduate and graduate students – the other programs just didn’t compare to the types of people I interacted with there.
- How did William & Mary’s Executive MBA shape your view on the types of organizations you wanted to work for?
- There’s a culture at William & Mary around helping you to understand what your own professional vision is and what skills and perspectives you can contribute to an organization. At one point I found myself working for a company that did not share my vision; they just weren’t for me. So, after speaking with my classmates and some of the Executive Partners, I made the decision to leave that organization.
- How have you leveraged the Tribe network to progress in your career?
- When I made the decision to leave an organization whose vision I did not share, the first thing I did was connect with my network on LinkedIn. I had a lot of connections from William & Mary but what surprised me were the people outside of my immediate network who saw I was a member of the Tribe and reached out to me to see if they could help me find my next opportunity because they were affiliated with the university too. It really surprised me that they reached out and I’m very appreciative
Executive MBA Class of 2017
Undergraduate University: American Military University
Current Employer: Booz Allen Hamilton
Current Position: Senior Advanced Conventional Weapons Subject Matter Expert
- Why did you decide to pursue an MBA at William & Mary?
- The impetus of going for my MBA was the clock was ticking on using the remaining two years of my GI Bill. I was also at a point in my career where I was reaching the next step of senior-level management in government service. An MBA seemed really attractive. My bachelor’s degree is from an online university and William & Mary’s Executive MBA could give me the brick and mortar experience that I didn’t have. The every-other-week format was fantastic for me. I could arrange my work schedule so I could take off every other Friday to be in class.
- How have you applied the information from the program to your professional roles?
- At first glance, it seemed to me that a quite a few of the classes had a very low threshold of application to the work I was doing with the military and government. But what I found was much of the analysis work and decision-making processes I did in classes like marketing, for example, was similar to what I was doing in my military operations role every day. In my newest role, I’m demonstrating the leadership skills I learned in the program and I’m able to actively participate in things like proposal writing.