Chan By, an alum of the Georgia Tech Scheller College of Business Executive MBA (EMBA) program, never let being a female in the male-dominated industry of Information Security (Infosec) intimidate her. She viewed it as a motivator to excel.
“Personally, a big factor in my wanting an Executive MBA was that I wanted to ensure I would be a well-rounded leader,” By said. “For me, it was ‘let’s make sure you have all the attributes needed for a leader especially as a woman in technology and a woman in security’. That was honestly part of the reason why I decided to get my MBA because it is a very competitive field. It is very male-dominated and as a woman, you want to have attributes that will support your candidacy for the next leadership position.”
By worked through the ranks at Equifax, holding many leadership roles throughout her time there. Beginning as a Security Project Manager, she capped off her decade-long career at the company as the Senior Director of Global Security Programs. Her career path then took an interesting turn when she was approached by a former manager from Equifax to work at The Walt Disney Company.
“It’s an honor to work at The Walt Disney Company. My former manager reached out and wanted me to help build this program since it was a new segment and a new vertical for the company. It’s nice to be under leadership that I’m familiar with, trust and value. Additionally, working for Disney is an incredible honor. It’s a very recognizable brand. With that there is a lot of responsibility and due diligence required to make sure the brand stays well represented,” By said.
By currently is the Director of Security Assurance for The Walt Disney Company, where she manages the Disney assurance program for the Direct-to-Consumers & International segment. She manages a bi-coastal team, whose responsibility is to implement and support security related compliance requirements, audit requirements and functionalities, as well as security assurance testing and controls testing.
Before her move to Disney, By had been searching for ways to gain more insight and experience in business and expand her marketability. With her extensive career and background in Infosec, By was drawn to Georgia Tech Scheller’s EMBA program because of the Global Business track.
“I have my industry certifications and I have my security background, so for me, it was a matter of making sure I became more of a well-rounded leader,” By said. “In business, it’s not a matter of only understanding domestic relations or domestic leadership, it’s really, truly understanding how you manage across different segments, sectors, countries, and regions. There are so many different cultural elements that go into how you build relationships and rapport with different team members across the region and the globe. The Global Business program is what drew me to Scheller’s Executive MBA program specifically.”
By, whose undergraduate major was economics, enjoyed being back in class, focusing on graduate-level courses, and sharpening her leadership skills.
“I hadn’t had an accounting class in a while and I really enjoyed Debbie Turner as my accounting professor. I also really enjoyed the finance classes with Dr. Jayaraman and definitely enjoyed both of Dr. Dhooge’s legal courses. I appreciated how passionate they all were about their respective fields. I’m also very grateful for my experience with the capstone project because anytime you can expand your project management skills and increase your ability to manage customer expectations or deliverables, you grow as an individual and as a business leader,” said By.
Between the classes and growing her leadership capabilities, By’s absolute favorite part of the entire EMBA program was building relationships and connections with her fellow MBA students and professors.
“The relationships that I was able to build with the professors and the relationships especially with my teammates was my favorite part,” By said. “My entire cohort was amazing. Everyone in the program had different backgrounds and experiences. We all learned a lot from each other. I think the different backgrounds and the passion everyone had was what made the program so amazing. If I was going to get incredibly specific, I honestly feel that the reason my capstone team was as successful as we were was because of our different backgrounds. Those are friendships that I will keep throughout my life.”