Hometown: Annapolis, Maryland
Undergraduate School and Major / Degree programme: Catholic University of America, B.A. Political Science
Was entrepreneurship always your career goal? For a while, I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but entrepreneurship was always something that I was surrounded by. Most of my family in the states consists of business owners, and so it became familiar long before it became my goal. I do believe though, that once you are exposed to the benefits of entrepreneurship it’s tough to not become addicted to it. The energy and intensity of creating something of your own and the fighting to sustain and grow it is unlike any other feeling I have experienced in my career.
What led you to pursue a business Masters at this point in your personal development? My father immigrated to the United States in the 1980s. While he was able to become very successful here with his own business, I recognized that I needed a different base if entrepreneurship was something I wanted to explore. With the world changing so quickly, I wanted to grow businesses and make an impact in a different way and I needed different tools than my father had. A formal education in the principles of business was something I envisioned as a good compliment to the practical experience I was given in my upbringing.
How did you decide if a MMS was worth the investment? I wanted a business school program that was going to give me the experience that was tailored to students who were recently out of undergrad.
What was the key factor that led you to choose the MMS at Fuqua and why was it so important to you? I wanted a program in which the students were diverse and there was an emphasis on teamwork. This was particularly important to me, given the duration of the program. When you are on campus for such a short time, it was imperative to be surrounded by peers that were of diverse backgrounds and willing to learn and push each other collectively.
What quality best describes your classmates? My classmates were incredibly open-minded. From orientation till even now, the people met in the program were incredibly accepting of different backgrounds, ideas and experiences and utilized that to grow themselves.
Tell me about your venture: I am a franchisee of Dunkin’ Donuts in the Washington D.C. Metro area.
How has your business school experience helped you in creating and launching your business? Business school helped me in two ways. First, it introduced me to business concepts well beyond anything I was familiar with prior to the program. The sheer volume of classes, topics, and concentrations allow you to be exposed to considerably more information than I initially anticipated.
Secondly, it introduced me to a network of people that came from such diverse backgrounds and have gone on to do incredibly different and successful things that I feel like my network has all the expertise and experiences I need to be successful as an entrepreneur.
What is the biggest/most important lesson you have learned during your studies at Fuqua? People remain the most important business case to study and learn from. Nothing impacted my experience or value from the program like the people that taught me and learned there. Years later, it is those people that form my network, my experiences and my overall goals.
What are the next steps for you / your entrepreneurial venture? I plan on continuing to grow my franchise footprint (both within Dunkin’ and beyond). Additionally, I plan on investing in real estate ownership and creating a management structure for that portfolio.
Where do you see yourself in five years? I see myself as someone who has created a diverse retail portfolio in multiple states, and alongside that, developed a property portfolio to match!
DON’T MISS: MEET THE MIM ENTREPRENEURS OF 2020