“The ability to think critically, communicate effectively, and apply a strong work ethic are really key skills when you’re thinking about a career in business.” – Susan Killilea Coburn ‘92 P24
Graduating from Holy Cross in 1992, Susan Coburn recently took the time to reflect on her years before, during, and after her time on the Hill. Due to her initial interest in law and history, she was drawn to the College because it checked all of her boxes, including being a strong liberal arts school, allowing her to major in History and minor in Spanish while also exploring a wide range of subject matter. She is very appreciative of the holistic education Holy Cross provides for students as well as the strong foundation on how to think critically and communicate effectively–two skills that will go a long way in the business world. Susan appreciates the strong alumni network the College has, helping her easily stay in touch with her classmates to this day. She found that the College’s social justice mission has greatly impacted her life and allowed her to gain new perspectives on pressing issues in the world today. Her husband Ed Coburn ‘93 is a JVC alum and an attorney practicing municipal law. She stays in contact with her HC friends, most recently through a group started by her classmates in the Class of ‘92, which acts as a grassroots anti-racism alliance.The group now has over 90 members and focuses on dialogue, understanding and action. She and Ed have two daughters, with their eldest now attending Holy Cross in the Class of 2024.
Jack Browne ‘22 is an international studies major with a concentration in Latin American Studies who is also pursuing a Certificate in Business Fundamentals through the Ciocca Center for Business, Ethics, and Society. Jack spent the past year working to complete the requirements over the course of the ongoing pandemic. The virtual workshops included alumni presenters from across the country to present industry-specific sessions and attend networking events. “One aspect of the business workshops that have been particularly helpful to my development,” starts Jack, “is how alumni are brought in to speak on their fields of expertise and their professional journey. It was very reassuring for me to connect with recent graduates during the Marketing Communications & Sales workshop who now work at PepsiCo and hear about these individuals having success in the world of business without having gone on to business school.”
“The concerted integration of Holy Cross alumni into the Business Certificate Program reinforces the reality that graduates of the school care about current Holy Cross students.” – Jack Browne ’22
The Business Certificate Programs provided by the Ciocca Center offer excellent opportunities for students to network with alumni and help kickstart their careers. With the help of hundreds of alumni across the various Business Certificate Programs, students can see that the Holy Cross liberal arts education supports a variety of career interests. Jack goes on to say, “The workshops provide students with a blueprint to learn more about industries, interact with alumni, and develop skills in professionalism that I have used firsthand to navigate interviews and internship applications.”
Jack has completed nearly all of the Certificate requirements this academic year, many of which were held virtually. He hopes to apply the knowledge gained through these experiences during an upcoming summer internship. Good luck!
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Many thanks to Conor Hatton ’22 , marketing assistant for the Ciocca Center, for interviewing and writing this student’s experience.
The minor in Business, Ethics & Society through the Ciocca Center at Holy Cross goes beyond practical preparation, introducing students to the historical, social, and political aspects of the institution of business and offering it up for your critique. Regardless of whether they will participate in business or simply live in a society deeply shaped by it, the interdisciplinary minor in Business, Ethics & Society provides a deeper understanding of what business is, what it does, and what it could — and should — become.
“I have developed strong research and writing skills through various classes that I have taken at the College… Holy Cross’ emphasis on class participation has taught me to speak up and share my ideas with those around me.”
–Christina Casey ’22
Interested in finance? Take a listen to an interview by Leif Johnson ’21 withTed Lynch ’84. Leif first met Ted, Managing Director at Bank of America, during the annual spring Corporate Finance & Banking Workshop in Boston. Ted has been a great mentor for many students, including Leif, and he is eager to share new opportunities with Holy Cross students.
“Holy Cross will teach you to think critically and persuasively, no matter your major.” – Ted Lynch ’84
Who/What inspired you to enter the business world? Both of my parents worked in business, so I definitely gravitated to what I was familiar with coming out of college. Within the business world, I chose to enter into the financial services industry because it complemented my strong interest in economics. Continue reading “Alumna Spotlight: Seton McFarland ’16”
Leif Johnson ’21, Economics Major
Fall 2019 Ciocca Center Intern
Coming into freshman year at Holy Cross I played lacrosse, and only lacrosse. That is who I was my entire life. I am very thankful for the lessons in teamwork and leadership along with the life long friends I made being that these are things I will have forever. I was never in any extracurriculars being that I truly thought all I would do is go to college, play lacrosse, and graduate with a job waiting for me. However, at the beginning of my sophomore year that all changed when I sat down and thought about all the things I wanted to explore on campus and beyond. Continue reading “Ciocca Center Intern Shares Path to Finance”
Each semester the Ciocca Center hires a new intern to complement the Academic Internship Program through the JD Power Center on campus. Partnering again with Prof. Dan Ricciardi’s course offering, Leif Johnson ’21 is currently enrolled in “Managing Business in Society” and is interviewing alumni to show how a Jesuit liberal arts degree is an excellent foundation for a career in business. Check out his fall alumni interviews:
Established in 2006 with limited offerings for students to explore business at Holy Cross,the office was recently named the Ciocca Center for Business, Ethics, and Society. Parents, students and alumni alike have found the Center’s experiential learning opportunities to be a valuable addition to the liberal arts education and student interest in these business certificate programs is booming. As of the spring 2019 semester, there are more than 470 students participating, and they come from all majors. Enrollment in the workshop about supply chain management doubled from 2017 to 2018, from 20 to more than 40 students. The workshop on business ethics and principled leadership had so many students enroll that Prof. David Chu, Director and Prebusiness Advisor, hopes to offer multiple sessions in the future.
“With the center, we’re going to be able to significantly expand opportunities to meet student demand. The purpose of the center is to provide students with multiple pathways to learn about business — pathways that can complement any major in the curriculum. We don’t try to replicate a business school curriculum; we take a distinctively liberal arts approach” Chu comments.
Anne Fink ’85, P17 President of Global Foodservice, PepsiCo
“One of my mentors has been a real model for servant leadership. This notion of putting others first stands out to me: just because you’re at the top of the organization, doesn’t mean that people are serving you.”
On April 1, 2019, Ciocca Center Student Intern Sarah Anderson ’20 interviewed Anne to learn about her journey in the food and beverage industry. Anne is the President of Global Foodservice at PepsiCo and is a member of the Holy Cross Board of Trustees.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you always know you wanted to work in the food and beverage industry? I grew up in a business family. My father and mother started a business when I was in grade school and it ended up being a family affair. It was a company called Mats Incorporated, a commercial floor matting business. My father started it from the trunk of his car selling doormats to businesses. Little by little, he grew the business into a pretty large and successful entity. Actually, my three brothers own the business and run it today and they have hundreds of employees. My mother would type the invoices at night and I used to help her. So, it was very much a family business. I grew up interested in business, curious and involved. I knew I liked business and was interested in pursuing a career in it. I had a good feeling for that pretty early on in life. Continue reading “Ciocca Center Intern to Interview Anne Fink ’85, P17”
Bill Abbott ’84 President & CEO of Crown Media Family Networks
“This is where being a major in English really comes in handy. I feel like I learned story, characters, and emotion and all the things that comprise great storytelling at Holy Cross.”
On March 29, 2019, Ciocca Center Student Intern Sarah Anderson ’20 interviewed Bill to learn about how he turned his English Major into a career in the entertainment industry. Bill is the President and CEO of Crown Media Family Networks.
What did you want to be when you grew up? Did you always know you wanted to work in the entertainment industry? No, not at all. I was an English major, with a lot of political science classes mixed in there. I was really focused more either on law school or teaching when I was at school. But, after college I felt like more school wasn’t really where I wanted to be my first year out. So, I was fortunate enough to get a job in the media world, loved it from the beginning, and decided that’s what I would focus on. Entertainment is not something I intended on, but the liberal arts education provided me with a great backdrop for really anything I wanted to do because it teaches you and gives you a good sense of how to communicate and critically think and write. All of those are crucial aspects to any job. Continue reading “Ciocca Center Intern Interviews Bill Abbott ’84”