As part of Scheller’s Countdown to Commencement series, we interviewed a few soon-to-be graduates from our undergraduate, MBA, and Ph.D. programs to learn about their backgrounds, why they chose Scheller College, and what they plan to do after Spring 2019 Commencement.
Meet Daniel Condon:
Daniel, an Atlanta native, is completing his Evening MBA. He describes himself as a “father who loves sports, food, and travel.” He’d like his peers to remember him as a “dedicated teammate who treated people fairly and with respect.”
What is your undergraduate degree?
BSBA from Scheller College at Georgia Tech, Concentration in Accounting.
Where will you be working after graduation?
When I started the MBA program in the spring of 2017, I was an operations analyst with CP Kelco, a JM Huber company. After one year in the program, I was promoted to Finance Manager and most recently (Nov. 2018) I was promoted to Senior Finance Manager.
Why did you choose Scheller College of Business?
I was an undergraduate at Georgia Tech and really appreciate the focus on technology and hands on learning. I wanted the same experience in a business school. In addition, I work in the manufacturing industry and there are a lot of elective courses that align with my interests.
Who was your favorite professor (and why)?
Professor Hackett - he made me realize there is a lot of hard science behind marketing and gave me an appreciation for the discipline (I am a finance guy). It is a hard task to keep students engaged during the summer at 8:30 p.m., but Professor Hackett managed to keep classes engaging and fun.
What was your favorite course (and what was the biggest insight you gained about business from it?)
Strategic Brand Management. You can make the best product in the world, but if your offering doesn’t align with your customer’s need and you don’t communicate that message to your customer, you won’t be successful. For our class project, we were able to partner with New Realm Brewing and help them identify target markets and create branding and messaging to attract those customers.
As a business student in the heart of Tech Square, how do you think Scheller College embodies the intersection of business and technology?
The professors at Scheller College really try to bring in the latest technology tools and trends into the classroom. These are things that you can implement immediately at work and see benefit from.
Did you participate in any hands-on/experiential learning opportunities? If yes, which projects/companies did you work with and how did you help them?
Yes, I did a Finance independent study with Carbice. Carbice was founded by a doctoral student at Georgia Tech and is bringing a unique product to market. They manufacture a thermal material used in computer chip testing. We created a financial model Carbice could present to potential customers showing the financial benefits associated with switching from their current materials to Carbice’s superior product.
In not-for-profit consulting, we worked with Global Growers to create a sales reporting tool that used both Google Sheets and PowerBi to automate their monthly sales reporting.
For Lean Six Sigma, we worked with Glock’s HR team to analyze their current operations for onboarding employees, and design improvements to help reduce the number of steps and time required.
Did you travel abroad during your time at Scheller? What were some of your key takeaways from the experience?
I didn’t travel with the business school, but I do travel internationally for work. I took cross cultural management, and I wish I had taken the class before I had gone to China as a new manager. The cultural differences are vast, and Dr. Liu really does a wonderful job of explaining the nuances of dealing with a number of different cultures and countries. I felt much more comfortable on subsequent trips after taking his course.
What is your best piece of advice to an applicant hoping to get into Scheller College?
Be honest and authentic in your interactions with everyone. Scheller is a challenging place, but there are a lot of people rooting for you to succeed and if you show that you are willing to put in the work you will be welcomed into the community.
What is the biggest myth about Scheller College?
Not everyone is an engineer. However, while there are a lot of engineers in the program, they bring a unique perspective to business and really help other non-engineering students to think about business issues in a very different perspective. Working on teams with diverse background ands prior experiences provides valuable insights and results.
Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college?
My god-father was a CPA for Arthur Andersen, and I also got my CPA and worked at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). After focusing on accounting and finance, I decided to go back and get a more generalized degree at Scheller College’s Evening MBA program.
How did the extracurricular offerings at Scheller College help you during your time here?
Scheller offered a lot of extracurricular options. I went to a few events hosted by the Consulting Club and thoroughly enjoyed the networking. I also participated in “Train the Street” which I thought was an awesome experience.
What activities were you involved with on or off campus, and did your business education impact those activities in any way?
I was a mentor for an incoming business student which was a fun experience. It is nice to share your experience with someone who is just starting the journey.
“If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be…”
I would be waiting for an opportunity to get ahead. Instead of waiting for the opportunity, grab it.
What are the top two items on your bucket list?
Swim with sea turtles in the Galapagos Islands and take a family safari in South Africa.