Vice President, Public Affairs, Fidelity Investments
Executive MBA, Class of 2004
What are you currently doing (career-wise)?
I am a Vice President of Public Affairs for Fidelity Investments. Along with my team, we are responsible for government relations, public affairs and community relations for the company in New Mexico, California, Utah and Colorado.
Why did you decide to pursue an Executive MBA?
I was looking to expand my business skill set. It wasn't that I wanted to be an accountant or an operations expert, but I wanted to know what questions to ask of those specialists, and that I was able to understand their answers.
What did you take away from your MBA learning experience which has been most applicable to your career?
There are quite a few things I use on a regular basis, like interpreting financial statements, preparing effective presentations and briefings, and applying techniques we learned in our Organizational Behavior class. Part of my job includes working with elected officials, so crafting an effective message and building strong relationships are essential to my success in this role.
What was the most surprising thing about the Executive MBA program?
How much I learned from my fellow students. No matter what we were studying, someone in the program had real-life experience to offer that really enriched the discussion.
You are so busy, how did you fit classes into your schedule?
While I was in the program, I was traveling about 50% of the time for work, so I studied on planes and in airports quite a bit. It also meant giving up watching TV or reading for fun, but I started listening to audio books during my commute and that gave me an escape once in a while.
What advice do you have for future students applying for the program?
It goes a lot faster than you think it will. But make sure your family and your job are completely on board before you start.
Anything that you would like to include that wasn't asked?
On a personal level, I made some really good friends through the program. Several of whom I stay in regular contact with, even 13 years later.