Degree: MS in Human Resources, '91
Occupation: Senior Vice President & Chief Human Resources Officer, Exelon Corporation
Why this program?
I majored in Liberal arts during my time as an undergraduate student at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. This degree didn’t train me for a specific profession, but rather it exposed me to a variety of different subjects with regard to philosophy, literature, economics, and so on. Therefore, I knew that I needed to attend graduate school to gain a strong set of practical skills to jumpstart my career.
As I was researching different subjects and programs, my political science professor suggested that I turn my attention towards the field of human resources. And so after researching human resources and the importance of it, I knew that it was the right choice for me.
I chose Quinlan’s human resources program because of the Quinlan faculty. I had looked at other schools, but they didn’t personalize the experience for me like Quinlan did.
I really enjoyed learning at Quinlan—every class was exciting and exposed me to a new area of human resources. Additionally, the students in the class were a mix of working professionals and recent college graduates so there were a lot of good discussions as we went through the course material.
In class, we worked with real-world clients and I gained a strong set of tangible skills that I still use to this day in my current role at Exelon, as I interact with stakeholders including the CEO and executive management team, our workforce, shareholders and the board of directors.
I also formed really good relationships with professors Al Gini, Lamont Stallworth, and Kathy Goeppinger. They provided me with career guidance, which ultimately helped me find good internships and an interesting and challenging entry-level role in human resources upon graduation.
Advice to students in the program?
Now, is an amazing time to be in human resources! I suggest that you learn all you can, talk to people in different areas of human resources to understand what all is possible in your career.
And most importantly, seize the opportunity to really make a difference in your company’s competitiveness by attracting, developing, and retaining strong talent.
Why Quinlan (In 10 words or less)?
A competitive program that prepares you for the real-world.