Q: What is your current profession and what led you there?
A:Currently I am a Product Director at Manulife Asset Management / John Hancock. I started in the John Hancock Investment Division Rotational Program right out of undergrad. After two years in the program, I discovered the Global Product Team, where I have been working for 8 years.
Q: How did D'Amore-McKim prepare you for this career in the global business world?
A:My graduate school experience prepared me in many ways: the technical knowledge learned in the classroom; the forum to debate and discuss ideas with students and professors from different backgrounds, industries and career paths; the group projects and case studies that developed skills in time management, organization, teamwork, conflict resolution, and project management; and the opportunity to cultivate a whole new network outside of my job.
Q: Can you describe the academic experience of the Part-Time MBA Program?
A: Everyone's coming in to the program very motivated. Everyone wants to make the most of the class time. For example, if you're in class two nights a week, you make the most out of those two hours, and so does the faculty. They know they have a certain amount of time to tell you what you need to do to achieve your career goals. And you want to take advantage of that, because the faculty here is incredible. Look at their resumes and work experience—it's not just higher education experience. More than theory or concepts, they give you something tangible and practical, because they know that you're going to work the next day. In fact, there were times I went to work on a Thursday morning, and used what I learned on Wednesday night.
Q: What are some of the skills that you developed in the program?
A: I've gained crucial presentation skills. That's a big part of an MBA program, whether it's individual presentations or group presentations. You have to be able to get up in front of your colleagues and very esteemed faculty and present your case concisely and confidently. And I've brought that back into my work environment, where I presented ideas and business cases. My manager even noticed. He said, “You seem much more confident now when you're up there giving your presentations. I've noticed an improvement.”
Q: What's your most interesting memory from your time at Northeastern?
A: Participating in the Washington Campus Program where I got to spend a week in D.C. with fellow Northeastern students as well as students from other universities. It was like a snapshot of what it is like to live and work in D.C. The week offered a series of lectures from experts in their respective fields, focusing on the connections between business and public policy. One of the best parts was having special access to some of the best sites in D.C. like the Fed, National Press Club, and Capitol Hill. At one point, I thought I can't believe I'm sitting on the floor of the House of Representatives!
Q: What would you say to someone who's considering the D'Amore-McKim Part-Time MBA program?
A: The same thing that someone said to me when I was considering D'Amore-McKim: just go for it. It offered me the flexibility I needed, a wide range of interesting and challenging classes, and access to teachers and resources that helped shape my career. It is a terrific program at a great school that will set you up for success.