Graduate Spotlight

Danielle Koval headshot

Where are you from?

I’m originally from Cleveland, Ohio, but I have been living in Cincinnati for the past 10 years.

Why did you choose UC, and this program?

I chose UC because of the amazing campus environment. I loved UC's MBA program because it was structured in a way that allowed you to learn in the classroom, but also took learning outside the classroom and into the real business world through the capstone program and case competitions.

You left a job to pursue your MBA. Was that a hard decision? Is it one you would make again?

Yes, it certainly was, but the payoff of being able to be fully immerse myself in the community, campus, and extra projects and activities was worth it because those additional things helped me expand my network and skillset beyond the standard learning within the MBA program.

What did you like most about the program?

I liked that it was only one year and the flexibility it provided. There was quite a bit of flexibility in class options and there were always opportunities to participate in additional activities, such as case competitions, independent studies, and service groups.

Where do you work now? How has this program helped you in this position?

Right now I am an Associate Innovation & Growth Strategist at The Garage Group, a startup consulting firm in Cincinnati. The program helped me in this position because it taught me to look at the big picture and a business holistically, which has greatly benefited me when working with our cross-functional clients and developing growth strategies to drive the entire business forward.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

Make the program what you want. If there is something you want to work on or learn during your time in the program, starting asking around, and make it happen. And network—get out there and meet people, especially beyond the program and Lindner community. Have coffee or phone calls with business leaders in different industries and soak in as much as you can as to how they got where they are today and how you can start to develop your own career path.

Alex Perez professional headshot

Where are you from?

I’m originally from New Jersey, but Cincinnati is quickly becoming home.

Why did you choose UC, and this program?

I was looking for a program that would help me build the network and skills needed to rise above competition for the top jobs in the country. And I wanted to finish in a year and at a reasonable cost. Lindner’s MBA program was one of the only programs that could check all of those boxes for me and delivered against all of the criteria I was looking for in an MBA program.

You left a job to pursue your MBA. Was that a hard decision? Is it one you would make again?

Change is always difficult, but I would make the same choice again. It is essentially betting on yourself. In order to change the trajectory of your career, you need to make tough choices and the Lindner MBA is designed to help make those tough choices pay off.

What did you like most about the program?

Everything starts and ends with the people for me. Lindner gives you the opportunity to interact with classmates, professors, alumni, and mentors from the business community in creative ways to help forge relationships that I still maintain today. You will spend time learning from and with some of the top minds in their fields and that experience is invaluable when you re-enter the work force.

Where do you work now? How has this program helped you in this position?

I’m currently an Assistant Brand Manager at Procter & Gamble. Lindner helped me build and practice the strategic, analytical, and creative thinking skills needed to lead teams and brands at P&G.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

As you consider an MBA program, have a clear picture of what your dream scenario for yourself is at the end of the program. Choose a program that is going to help you make that scenario come true and then spend your time having fun, learning, building relationships, and taking steps towards that dream.