“I am a team builder, guided by serving and helping others realize their potential.”
Hometown: Youngstown, Ohio
Fun fact about yourself: I used to be a certified helicopter instructor pilot, but now am an FAA commercial drone pilot! Taking video and pictures from above is a new and unique perspective that continues to keep me excited about flying.
Undergraduate School and Degree: The United States Military Academy (West Point), Bachelors of Science in Military History
Where was the last place you worked before enrolling in business school? The United States Army, Director of Graduate Level Flight Training
Where did you intern during the summer of 2018? This summer I focused on entrepreneurship and started a small real estate investment business in Columbus. I also started a chapter of a military Veteran-oriented non-profit called Operation Supply Drop in Columbus.
Where will you be working after graduation? The Ohio State University, Assistant Professor of Military Science and Leadership | Small Business Leader & Entrepreneur
Community Work and Leadership Roles in Business School:
- Fisher Veteran Association, Networking Officer
- Pat Tillman Foundation, 2019 Scholar
- Operation Supply Drop, National Advisory Board Member
- Operation Supply Drop, Columbus Chapter Lead
- Operation Supply Drop, OSU Academic Advisor
- Team Red, White, and Blue, Veteran Service Organization Liason
- Veterati, Veteran Transition Mentor and Coach
- Hire Heroes USA, Veteran Transition Mentor and Coach
- American Corporate Partners, Brand Ambassador
Which academic or extracurricular achievement are you most proud of during business school? The Global Applied Projects program is a consulting project you do for an international company, helping them solve a complex problem. My team of five MBA students went to Malaysia, Thailand, China, and California for the consulting project, providing hands-on learning with a Fortune 500 company. With little guidance, we set up interviews across the globe, traveled independently, discovered the requirements for the solution, and briefed a recommendation to a high-level organizational problem. We were able to brief the C-Suite in San Jose, CA and help them implement real change in their processes.
This helped validate the lessons we had learned over the first year of the MBA and showed that we had more skills than we could have imagined. This helped me to realize my potential and helped guide my journey over the second year of this program.
What achievement are you most proud of in your professional career? I was selected to be a Tillman Scholar in the summer of 2018 for the Pat Tillman Foundation. The foundation selects around 60 Veterans and Spouses from a pool of thousands of applications and provides resources, a vast network, and educational scholarships to help them achieve their goals.
While I have had many proud moments in my career, this was one of the highlights. It validated the reasons why I serve, helped define my journey, and allowed me to connect with some of the most amazing people I have ever met. Just being in the presence of these service-minded Veterans and Spouses helps keep me engaged and focused on my goals of leading change and helping others overcome the struggles they face.
Who was your favorite MBA professor? Professor John Schaffner (Introduction to Business Coaching, Advanced Business Coaching, High-Performance Teams).
What was your favorite MBA Course? I did not know what coaching was until I took John Schaffner’s Introduction and Advanced Organizational Business Coaching classes in the organizational behavior track. It has changed the way I think about leadership, focusing more on listening to others and helping make positive change. Taking those two courses is validation alone of why I came to Fisher.
Why did you choose this business school? I chose the FCOB because of the focus on not just learning but applying what was learned in real-world scenarios. I was impressed with the focus on case competitions, the Global Applied Projects, the Business Professional Development Course, and the new Hacking for Defense Course. All these courses provide real problems that clients face and allow us as students to interact with the client to reach a business or policy solution.
What is your best advice to an applicant hoping to get into your school’s MBA program? Find out why OSU is right for you. There are so many opportunities, clubs, instructors, and life-changing classes here that helped shape my decision. You can choose the Fisher College of Business for many reasons, but look at what this MBA program offers that others do not and make that the reason why you want to come. Then, tell how these programs and clubs will help capitalize on your life story, goals, and dreams. This will show you have done your homework and really want to be a part of the next class.
What is the biggest myth about your school? That Buckeye football was a religion here. While football is VERY important here at OSU and the FCOB has its own section and tailgates, I was surprised how many people did not go to the games. While I only went to a few, it was more of a fun time with family and friends than the “cult-like” status it was made out to be.
Think back two years ago. What is the one thing you wish you’d known before starting your MBA program? This may sound obvious, but it is hard work! Keeping up with all of the core classes in the first year was hard enough, but adding clubs, interviews, networking, and family life into the mix was difficult to manage. I thought my time management was pretty good before I started this program, but now have a much better idea of what time management looks like, especially when managing competing priorities. Learning how to say no has been hard, but a skill I learned over the last two years. I think a lesson learned is finding out that each time you say “Yes” to another priority, you are actually saying “No” to something else. Focusing on what matters is an important lesson I wish I would have come into the program understanding from Day 1.
MBA Alumni often describe business school as transformative. Looking back over the past two years, how has business school been transformative for you? While learning the business fundamentals have been transformative, I think my focus on strategy, leadership, and organizational change has been the most transformative. It helped me align a lot of my core values and beliefs and showed me the effect business leaders can have on their community and the world. I truly found out who I was and who I wanted to be in the future. It changed the way I looked at current events, business success, ethics, and the tacit assumptions of companies. These skills have changed the way I view the world and will make me a better business leader in the future.
Which MBA classmate do you most admire? Alex Masica. He was one of the first people I met at the FCOB “Red Carpet Weekend” prior to starting in the fall of 2017. He always struck me as someone who knew who they were and were ready to take their skills to the next level. He was one of my teammates in the OSU Case Competition, sat in many of the same classes, and made the last two years more fun. The best part of him always being himself was that he seemed to always know what he was looking for out of this program. In the last few months, I have watched him develop his own successful company, Boone Street Body Co., from the ground up. Seeing him succeed gives me hope that each and every one of us will be able to follow our dreams as well and find success in something we are passionate about.
Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? My wife influenced me the most in my decision to leave the Army and start my MBA. I had always thought service was directed towards the people you saw every day. As an Army officer, it was easy to see how I affected the lives of those around me. However, she made me realize that you can make a difference in people’s lives everywhere you go and in everything that you do. She supported me as we transitioned out of the military, and I started a journey will I will hopefully have a much larger impact on my community and the world.
What was the goofiest MBA term or acronym you encountered – and what did it mean? This one would only make sense to a FCOB alumni. ATRQ or “Asking the right question.” Prof Shashi Matta was the Full-Time MBA Director and the core marketing program professor. He had a unique way to get us thinking outside the box and find ways to connect current events to marketing concepts. However, he did it in a way that made us act like typical first semester MBA students: frantic and stressed out!
“If I hadn’t gone to business school, I would be…stuck in a job that I was not passionate about, disengaged and wondering what life would have been like if I would have chosen to get my MBA.”
What dollar value would you place on your MBA education? Was it worth what you paid for it – worth more or worth less? I would honestly say the last two years have been priceless. Who I have become as a person and a leader coupled with the knowledge and experience I have gained could not have been found anywhere else. Many people struggle for years to find their passions and what drives them, making many mistakes along the way. This experience has allowed me to not only gain a network of supporters and friends but find my true self and discover how I can make a difference in this world with that knowledge. It was worth so much more than a dollar sign or a piece of paper. I used to struggle with the difference between what I could do and what I should do after the Army. This experience has aligned my passions and strengths and shed light on something I would have struggled to find on my own – my ideal self and a plan on how to get there on this journey.
What are the top two items on your bucket list?
#1 Take my kids to Paris, France on their first outside of the United States of America vacation.
#2 – Completely renovate a late 1800s Victorian Home (I love the craftsmanship of the time and the art of restoring its beauty).
In one sentence, how would you like your peers to remember you? Matt was the catalyst that helped others overcome their perceived boundaries and change their world.
Hobbies? Rucking, Traveling and Travel Drone Photography, Restoring Old Houses
What made Matt such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2019?
“Matt has been a faculty favorite from very early in the program. He is a driven student with a high business and emotional IQ. Academically speaking, Matt is as good as they come.
Going beyond academics, Matt is heavily involved in supporting and working with fellow students. He is very active in the new Fisher Coaching Program, working with the Fisher Leadership Initiative to help other students with goal setting and overcoming obstacles. In addition, he regularly assists peers in identifying career opportunities and has presented a course on using LinkedIn to fellow MBA students on multiple occasions.
In the broader community of veterans, both inside Fisher and beyond, Matt has made a significant impact. As shown above, he currently teaches as an Assistant Professor of Military Science at Ohio State. Beyond this, he is always willing to reach out to veterans interested in our FTMBA program, he started a local chapter of “Operation Supply Drop” to support Veterans in Columbus, and he was selected as a Pat Tillman Foundation Scholar.
Matt clearly fits the description of one of the best and brightest in the Fisher FTMBA program.”
Co-director of the FTMBA program
Are you a friend of Matt? Leave a comment to congratulate him.