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David Saterfield

Degree earned: Full-time MBA
Graduation: 2017
Current title/organization: VP, Trust Legal Strategy & Administration/First Citizens Bank & Trust Co.
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Why did you choose the NC State Jenkins MBA program for your graduate education?

Out of all of my interviews for graduate schools it felt like home. That was extremely important to me. I wanted to feel comfortable.

How did your experience in the program contribute to your professional achievements and successes?

I advise business units daily the legal ramifications of complex business problems. My MBA helped me understand how a business works day to day so I can better translate the legal speak to our business partners. I also learned practical skills that I use everyday

What did you enjoy most about your time in the Jenkins MBA program?

The network of people that I met in my cohort. Those memories I made with them are the best part.

What do you miss most now that you have graduated?

More sleep! I’m definitely busier now because I travel for work. Outside of that I don’t get to see the friends I made in graduate school as much because we are all so busy.

What are a few of the most impactful classes/lessons you learned during your time at NC State?

My most impactful classes were finance, strategy, and the ethics and compliance practicum. I use skills in those classes every single day, even if it’s as simple as shortcuts in excel. The biggest lesson I learned is to always reevaluate your work and find ways to improve your processes. That was key for case competitions that I competed in.

What are your lasting impressions of the Jenkins MBA program?

We will always be family. I was just down there recruiting students because I know that Jenkins students are family and if can help hire a Jenkins MBA I will.

What advice would you give for prospective and current students who are interested in your industry/profession?

Gather as many experiences as you can in school. Because no two days are the same in financial services. Try and do things outside your comfort zone that’s we’re growth happens. When you join the ranks of corporate America you’ll already be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

What advice do you have for prospective Jenkins MBA students?

Enjoy yourself don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Know that when you graduate you’ll be adequately prepared for your field. And try new things take different classes.

Could you give a brief explanation of your current line of work, and what has led you to it?

I’m internal counsel for the wealth management department at First Citizens Bank & Trust Company. I work with our Institutional Trust & Private Wealth Partners advising them on business and legal matters. I am an attorney by training but this role gave me exactly what I wanted which is how can I combine my legal and business experience into a job. I worked with career services and they identified First Citizens as a fit for me.

What do you believe is your most interesting accomplishment since graduation?

Being promoted twice since graduating.

What are your goals and plans for the future?

My goal is to learn as much as I can about ERISA law and start my own firm consulting for businesses like First Citizens.