Friday, April 21, 2017

MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Luke Bader


Luke Bader, MSBA '17 has accepted a job offer as a Community Manager for the FAIR Institute at RiskLens. Below, Luke answers some questions about his time with the program and how it helped prepare him for his career path.


Q: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?
I chose the MSBA Program because I knew that it was going to provide me with an amazing education, allow me to connect with so many smart, talented, good people, and offer me a time for personal growth and development. I was confident in my decision because I trust CUA and I admire and respect the professors and staff that work so hard to make the program great.

Q: What company will you be working for, and what will your title be?
I will be working at RiskLens, a cyber security and risk analysis company. I will specifically be the Community Manager for the FAIR Institute which is the premier organization for industry experts to join and share ideas with one another. In addition, I will be working with the public and private sectors to encourage companies to continue to increase their cyber security standards.

Q: How did you get interested in this type of work?
I’m very excited for this position because I am going to be doing multifaceted work. I will have responsibilities in marketing, management, and government relations. RiskLens and the FAIR Institute are both growing and have a lot of opportunity in the future so I am really happy to be able to use my skills to help it grow more.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path?
The MSBA program has given me so much confidence in myself and my knowledge. This program highlights the most important insights of a business curriculum and does a wonderful job of instilling those into the students. I know for certain that I am graduating with real life skills that I can use in my career.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?
One of the greatest strengths of the program are the professors. They are all experienced, professional, and caring people who only want the students to succeed and to be happy. Each of my professors has made a lasting impact me that I will use throughout the rest of my life. They have prepared me well and I thank them for their leadership in the MSBA program

Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?

For my Capstone Field Team Study project, I was put on a team that was aimed to be a consultant for Ristorante i Ricchi, a traditional Tuscan Italian restaurant in D.C. Some of my favorite memories have been working with my team and the professors on how to best increase the awareness of the restaurant and help them communicate better with the Millennial generation. Additionally, the perks are that we have been eating really well with some delicious pastas!  
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Thursday, April 20, 2017

MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Billy Goodyear


Billy Goodyear, MSBA '17, will be returning to work as an Action Officer at the Pentagon. He will be working on Ballistic Missile Defense Policy for OPNAV.

Q: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?  

The one year program in addition to the DC location were great selling points.  I also really liked that the professors weren’t pure academics.  They were individuals who had work experience and were very successful in their particular fields. They were able to convey real world information about being successful and what works.

Q: What will you be doing after graduation, and what will your title be?  

I will be going back to the Pentagon to work on Ballistic Missile Defense Policy for OPNAV.  My title will be Action Officer.

Q: How did you get interested in this type of work? 

I became interested in this work while I was stationed on the USS LAKE ERIE in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.  While on board, I was the Fire Control Officer and served an integral role on the ship for planning and execution of ballistic missile defense missions.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path?

It has helped prepare me because even in the world of the military, understanding money and the proper management of money are critical to success.  I will be using what I have learned about civilian lead businesses to help the Navy better understand the civilian side of defense acquisitions and better serve our taxpayers.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?  

The accounting and financial management classes go hand in hand with each other and have helped me better understand the lingo of those fields and how business and corporation really operate and account for their money.


Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?  

My favorite memories from the program are the relationships and networks built with the other students.  Each of us is our own unique individual and experiencing the learning and execution of the program alongside these other great people helped increase the experience and learning for all of us.


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MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Jeff Swierzbinski

Jeff Swierzbinski, MSBA '17 has accepted a job offer from Trion Group in Philadelphia, PA. Below, Jeff answers some questions about his time with the program and how it prepared him for his future career.

Q
: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?

When I decided to transition out of the United States Army I began to look at business schools and I realized that you can study business anywhere. You can study business at large universities and community colleges. The MSBA program at CUA was the only place where I could learn to fully integrate my Catholic faith with business.

Q: What company will you be working for, and what will your title be?

I will be working for Trion Group and I will be the Operations Project Manager.

Q: How did you get interested in this type of work?

After being an Army Officer, I had substantial leadership experience. Project management became a natural interest for me because it combines my leadership experience with my business education.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path? 

As a whole, the MSBA Program teaches you to analyze complex problems by breaking them down into digestible pieces. We also took a class called Operations and Technology Management where we spent a lot of time learning about and creating process diagrams which is a major component of my new position.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?

Part of my job is going to be to create buy-in when I implement new processes and procedures. I think learning the Extreme Presentation method during the MSBA Program is going to incredibly valuable because it will give me a medium to succinctly deliver a large volume of data which by its very nature, is very persuasive.


Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?

My favorite memory is working with all of my classmates at a DC soup kitchen two days before Thanksgiving. I think we all got more out of it than the people we were serving because it was a reminder of how fortunate we are and it allowed us to help others in a concrete way.

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Monday, April 17, 2017

MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Michael Bush


Q: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?

I chose the MSBA program because it fit with my goals and was one year long (which was all I could afford).  I was a philosophy major in undergrad. This Master's fit perfectly with what I was looking for: having a career and not just working a job.

Q: What company will you be working for, and what will your title be?

I am working for a small start up called Unlocked.  We are a self-funded company building an IT referral platform close to something like a combination of CareerBuilder and LinkedIn.

Q: What work will you be doing in this position?

I was offered a job which is extremely flexible and dynamic. Working at a startup is basically building a company, and I’ll be working with three other people and a part time development and sales team. Part of my role includes client relations, admin, marketing, sales, and anything other duties that help a company run and become successful. I am given broad latitude on responsibilities and can undertake most any projects that could benefit our company.  Since it is only three of us as the core of the team, I have the ability to do things and have input on our direction and business strategy at the highest level, But going out and executing on our business plan is what makes my position the most fun, especially because we have no road map and I am more or less free to choose the path I think best.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path?

The MSBA program helped prepare me for my current position by honing my business skills and getting me acclimated to the different terms, processes and attitudes by which business runs today. Also, helping me to gain a better sense of what business actually is, its different fields and where I fit in with my skills and personality was extremely valuable and something I would have found hard to get anywhere else.  On top of that, the professors are extremely experienced and I truly felt that they would help me with anything I needed to advance in my career.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?

We learn so many different things in the MSBA program that are going into how a small business runs that it is hard to quantify what is most helpful/pertinent in my current position.  Taking a course on entrepreneurship has helped with this, but also finance, marketing and operations management..

Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?

A favorite memory of mine was when we went to New York during election week and got to see all the different marketing companies on Madison Ave and take tours of Morgan Stanley.  I thought this was a great experience and something I never would have done anywhere else.  It was very busy but well worth it.  And having our own CUA open bar networking events (especially at the Capital Grille) was icing on the cake.
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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Chris Fontaine


Q: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?

During my senior year of college when I was looking for jobs, I found myself gravitating towards positions that were much more business-oriented than my undergraduate degree had been, and I felt like this program was a perfect crash course to help me make my way into that world.

Q: What company will you be working for, and what will your title be?

District Dogs: Supervisor

Jacob Hensley started District Dogs in 2014 after leaving a finance career to pursue his passion for
dogs. Within 3 years, his one-man dog walking operation has grown into a company with 12 staff members and over 300 clients in 8 neighborhoods of DC, and as of November 2016, a dog daycare and boarding facility.

After working with more than 50 clients as a dog walker, I'm now a supervisor at the new District Dogs daycare facility. I oversee a small staff of dog attendants and manage daycare and boarding operations.

Q: How did you get interested in this type of work? 

I adopted my dog Brody the summer before starting the program. Having him was a huge factor in my choice to work with dogs. There's no shortage of pet service companies in DC, and I picked District Dogs after realizing that it was the one company that really stood out as the kind of people I would want taking care of my own dog.

District Dogs seemed to be both professional and genuinely caring, so I was thrilled to join their team. I picked up my side job as a dog walker with DD after taking time off from the program in spring of 2016. What I thought would be a short stint has turned into a career! I had walked dogs in Mt. Pleasant, Adams Morgan, and Logan Circle for the company and really come to love our clients and staff. When Jacob asked me to join the management team for the dog daycare he was opening, it was a no brainer. As sad as I was to leave my group of daily walking clients, I now have nearly 100 dogs that I get to see all the time and I have much more in-person interaction with owners, which I was missing as a dog walker.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path?

The most valuable asset that the MSBA program has given me is my confidence in my ability to navigate the business world. Before starting the program, I felt intimidated by the MSBA curriculum, which included courses like Accounting and Quantitative Analysis. I was unsure not only about how I would perform in these classes, but I was also worried that I would hate them. I was a Theology major in undergrad and had always dreaded anything to do with math. I had decided I just wasn't good at it. The emphasis on practical application to business problems that our classes had put any difficult concepts we covered into clear context, and I ended up doing really well in both classes! It may seem small, but my ability to succeed in those areas really helped me challenge any other limits I had set on myself.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?

I feel much more confident about the value I bring to my company with an MSBA degree. Our Technology and Operations Management course was especially useful as we were getting a new facility off the ground and managing the speed of our success. Putting together a Daily Activity Log for staff to use every day to mark lunches, reminders, and client notes was a huge help to streamline our internal communication. This process was an improvement that our work in class empowered me to make.

Although working full time at District Dogs while being a full time MSBA student this semester has been challenging, I feel like I have gotten so much more out of courses since everything we've covered over these past few months has been directly applicable to my current position. I use skills I learned in Data Analytics, Managing the Enterprise, and Technology and Operations Management every day at work.

Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?

I love looking back on the class discussions we'd have in Managing the Enterprise. It was so fun to see how much more opinionated we all became as the semester went on, and to see people's thoughts evolve as the whole class contributed to our analysis.
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Monday, April 10, 2017

MSBA Student Success Testimonial Series: Carlos Alvarez


Carlos Alvarez, MSBA '17 has accepted a job offer at HITT Contracting. Below, Carlos answers some questions about his experience with the program and how it prepared him for his new career path.

Q: Why did you choose the MSBA Program?

I chose the MSBA program because even though Catholic University gave me a great liberal arts education, I did not feel like I had the hard skills to add value to a team. MSBA offered a one-year solution to my problem and I am glad that I applied to the program and have not looked back since day one.

Q: What company will you be working for, and what will your title be?

I will be working with HITT Contracting based in Falls Church, VA.  I will be reporting directly to Brett Hitt the owner of the company as an Executive Business Partner.

Q: How did you get interested in this type of work?

I found HITT on the Washington Post’s list of best places to work in the area. They were listed as number one. I checked their career’s page with not too much optimism but when I found this job listing I knew that it would be my first full-time job before submitting my application.

Q: How did the CUA MSBA program help prepare you for this career path?

The program helped by teaching me the hard analytical skills that employers seek in order to make an immediate impact upon arrival. This program also allowed for me learn critical thinking skills specifically targeted at business, such as how to analyze a problem, find a solution, and implement it; in other words from beginning to end.

Q: What from the program stands out specifically that you think helped prepare you for a career in this field?

Teamwork. Teamwork. Teamwork. MSBA’s multiple projects in various fields taught me how to lead and how to be part of a team. Companies are more likely to hire somebody who they have to teach but is an able member of a team rather than a genius who can’t work in a team.

Q: Can you recall a favorite memory from the program?

During the first meeting with my Field Team Study client, I was hit with the realization that this project was real. I was no longer simulating or using case study examples. I was the real life example and my actions could lead to potential millions in revenue increase or decrease for this company.
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Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Value of the MSBA: From a Parent's Perspective

"Two down and one to go!", my husband and I commented to each other on a fine, sunny day in April, 2013. We would soon be the parents of a pair of college graduates! What an accomplishment! Fellow moms and dads, you know the feeling. Thus, you can imagine our surprise when our son approached us over Easter break that year to tell us that he had applied to the MSBA program at The Catholic University of America.

I have to admit that our son was quite the salesman. He had already taken the GRE’s, calculated the tuition cost, quoted the impressive statistics of previous MSBA classes, established a graduation ETA, and quipped that, most importantly, the course material had truly piqued his interest. One more year, one year more, were we on board? My, time flies, right? Of course we were on board! The particulars for the MSBA program at Catholic U were most impressive, and our son would attain a Master’s Degree and become even more marketable in one more year! Sign him up.

The stage was set, and he entered the MSBA program in August of 2013 with his undergraduate degree of Politics in hand. My husband and I were amazed at how quickly the students were immersed and versed in business analytics. The days were long as our son shared his schedule: an internship in the A.M. hours to noon, classes until 6 P.M., and homework/research/group meetings into the late hours of the evening. These hours actually rivaled a day in the life of a parent…impressive! Quite honestly, though, our family noticed that our son was broadening his horizons and becoming more resolute about his career path. The annual trip to New York City solidified friendships, business contacts, and a renewed respect for Professor Stewart McHie, Program Director.

It became evident that the MSBA program had been the perfect choice for our son. The program bridged the gap between that all-important, yet somewhat uncertain, first year out of college and a master’s degree. So then, who are you, and what did you do with our son? The confidence gained was priceless. He was employed within three months of graduation! My husband and I feel that the goals of the MSBA program can best be summed up in the words of Benjamin Franklin, “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” What parent can ask for more?

Name withheld to protect the guilty!




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