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Elizabeth Ziegler

Degree earned: Professional Evening MBA
Graduation: 2012
Current title/organization: Senior Project Manager/Compass Group
LinkedIn Profile

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

Going to school part-time while working full-time taught me prioritization and self-discipline – skills that otherwise I’m not sure I would have developed. Working and studying at the same time also gave me an integrated perspective on how what I learned in the classroom could be applied to be more successful at work.

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

I loved the competitive friendly atmosphere of the Jenkins MBA program. I got to be best friends with the students in my cohort as we formed an “in this together” perspective when it came to group projects; taking tests; and finding jobs after graduation.

What do you miss most now that you have graduated?

I miss hearing other peoples’ perspectives of their workplaces and of classroom discussion. Hearing about my classmates’ projects or dilemmas they faced in their jobs was not only interesting but also helped me become a more collaborative and problem-solving oriented person.

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

Talk to as many people as you can who work in the industry or role you’re interested in pursuing. Try to dig below the surface to find out why they love what they do and, just as importantly, what they find most challenging.

What advice do you have for prospective Jenkins MBA students?

Don’t be afraid to go for it. As a former Peace Corps volunteer and Liberal Arts major, I wasn’t sure if an MBA was the right path for me. However, it was important for me to gain substance and business acumen so I could continue my career progression. Even if some courses seem intimidating, you have a great support system of professors and classmates to help you along.

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

I am a Senior Project Manager at Compass Group in Charlotte, NC. Over the past five years, I’ve worked on a variety of projects across the 6th largest employer in the country. My projects have focused on Operational Simplification, and several technical and M&A integrations.

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

I recently completed a company’s integration of their Accounting, Finance, Payroll, Benefits, HR and IT systems and processes. It was a year-long project that definitely stretched me but I’m so grateful for the experience!

What are your goals and plans for the future?

I’d like to get my PMP (Project Management Professional) certification.