Each week, JWMI profiles students and alumni in its new featured series “Winning Voices.” Learn about our diverse community and what sets our program apart from those who have experienced it. For more great “Winning Voices” content, click here.
Program/Concentration: Jack Welch MBA
TELL US ABOUT YOUR JOB RESPONSIBILITIES AT Vitalyst, LLC
I have been working in the field of Accounting for over 25 years. Currently, I work remotely from Daytona Beach, Florida, as Controller for Vitalyst, LLC, a technology consulting firm with offices in Pennsylvania and Ohio. I achieved my Certified Management Accountant designation in December of 2014, my CPA license in December of 2020, my Jack Welch MBA in March of 2021, and continue to pursue opportunities to better myself—I love to learn.
On a personal note, I am married and have two children, both college graduates. My husband and I enjoy spending time outdoors and are avid motorcyclists. I serve as Treasurer for our local Harley Owners’ Group and regularly volunteer for Habitat for Humanity which brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope.
WHY WERE YOU LOOKING TO GET AN MBA?
I aspire to be in an executive role with an organization that shares my goals and values. In addition, I have a passion for learning and welcome change that drives growth. To that end, I decided that achieving my MBA was a necessary step toward my career goal.
DID YOU FIND THE CURRICULUM WAS IMMEDIATELY APPLICABLE? PLEASE EXPLAIN.:
Applying what you learn to your job has been my most rewarding Jack Welch MBA experience. One example of a practice I could use in my job led to implementing new accounting software. Unfortunately, it was ten years in the making because executive management did not see the value. Finally, in the fall of 2020, I crafted a high-level list of the benefits our company would realize by implementing the new software and presented it to the CEO/CFO. I received approval and was tickled pink when the CEO announced at our weekly management meeting that he did not understand why we had not implemented sooner since the upside to the company far outweighed the expense. JWMI gave me the tools to prepare and present my winning project.
WHAT’S BEEN YOUR MOST REWARDING EXPERIENCE IN THE PROGRAM?
Throughout my coursework at JWMI, I learned that knowledge isn’t power; sharing knowledge is power. Working side by side with the professors and my classmates, we challenged and supported each other to grow as leaders. I never thought I would become comfortable presenting to a group, but JWMI gave me the tools and confidence to succeed.
Please share any advice for new students embarking on the MBA journey.
My advice to an incoming JWMI student is to take advantage of the many resources offered, including the knowledgeable and caring professors. Ask questions, interact thoughtfully with your peers, and keep a positive attitude!
Connect with Bernadette Courtright on Linkedin
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