Meet The MBA Class Of 2024: Brendan Hartman, Texas Christian University (Neeley)

Brendan Hartman

Texas Christian University Neeley School of Business

“I’m a logophile who colors outside the lines, metaphorically.”

Hometown: Lewisville, Texas

Fun Fact About Yourself: I had the distinct privilege of being a cowboy actor in the Fort Worth Stockyards, which fulfilled my childhood dream (yeehaw!).

Undergraduate School and Major: TCU, Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: Cervello, Consultant

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of TCU Neeley’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? As a soon-to-be double Horned Frog, I entered the MBA application process fully aware of the immeasurable value of TCU’s global alumni network. Not only does the Neeley School claim a host of successful business leaders as alumni, but the graduates take care of their fellow Horned Frogs, and are more than willing to connect with TCU students to lend a helping hand. Additionally, the Dallas-Fort Worth area presents incredible job prospects. The metroplex has long-since been a hub for international business, and in the last decade Dallas-Fort Worth benefited from several large corporations—including AT&T and Toyota—relocating their headquarters to the area. The metroplex’s robust job market influenced my decision to earn my MBA locally at TCU to leverage the myriad opportunities boasted by the metroplex.

What course, club or activity excites you the most at TCU Neeley? TCU offers a program to their MBA students named Neeley Alumni Connection, where they intentionally match students with alumni who work in functional areas in which the students have expressed interest. Since I am concentrating in Corporate Finance for my MBA, the program introduced me to a successful finance leader whose professional experience included a decade-long tenure at one of my target companies. In our initial meeting, my mentor recommended that I listen to the recorded quarterly earnings calls of the companies for which I had scheduled interviews. He explained that I could use the information I learned on the calls to develop insightful, company-specific questions for my interviews. I deployed my mentor’s advice to great effect and secured several offers following my interviews at this year’s National Black MBA Association Conference. TCU Neeley’s personalized approach to assisting each MBA student in their job search, as evidenced by the Neeley Alumni Connection program, exemplifies the competitive difference that sets TCU Neeley apart from other business schools.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Hands down, my proudest accomplishment in my professional career has been passing my AWS Solutions Architect Associate certification on the first attempt. The prep effort included months of studying, sometimes for upwards of eight hours a day. During the certification process, I went from knowing nothing about cloud computing to earning one of the industry’s most sought-after certifications.

What is one thing you have recently read, watched, or listened to that you would highly recommend to prospective MBAs? Why? Without a doubt, the book I would recommend to incoming MBA students is “The Compound Effect.” While I’ve consumed a multitude of self-development books in my life, Darren Hardy’s work proved to be the most unforgettable and provided the most direct applications to my life. If you read it, you will be unable to look at your decisions—especially all the seemingly insignificant ones—the same way.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into TCU Neeley’s MBA program? Carpe diem, take the bull by the horns, and err on the side of “yes.” It’s better to have gone for the brass ring and missed it than to never had tried and to spend the rest of your years wondering “what if?”