Career Academies

A Snapshot of Our Students

Meet a few of the Tippie marketing academy students. We hope to show that no matter your background or career path, if you're passionate about marketing, you'll find the right fit here. We asked our students, "Why marketing, and Why Tippie?" Each describes the journey that led him or her to marketing, and what a Tippie MBA is doing to jump-start their careers.


First-Year Students

Maggie Pearthree

Maggie Pearthree, MBA 2014

Hometown: Minneapolis, MN
Education: : B.A. Art History, Hamline University
Work Experience: Digital Strategy Consultant, Business Owner

"Developing customer relationships and understanding their needs has always been at the core of business for me, but I think it all started when I read "Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping" while I was in college. It was fascinating and I've been hooked ever since. The marketing academy offers broad curriculum that will allow me to really dig into how best to meet customer needs, build on my existing experience in digital marketing, and apply the knowledge to all kinds of business. I chose Tippie because of the many hands-on learning experiences, the quality of education, and the fantastic group of people I met when visiting."

Amber Davis

Amber Davis, MBA 2014

Hometown: New Edinburg, AR
Education: BA in English, focus in Creative Writing and Renaissance Literature, University of Iowa
Work Experience: Teacher of English, AEON East Japan

"I'd held a variety of entry-level positions in sales before moving to Japan to take a teaching position at a private language school. It was really surprising to see how differently marketing is viewed in academia, as well as in a foreign country. After taking over many of the marketing duties of my manager, but being unable to fill her role due to 'silo'ing, I decided to come back to school. Iowa was the only logical choice for me, because the staff are helpful and proactive, the professors are very knowledgeable and just 'strange' enough, and the Tippie student body - both current students and alumni - is very inclusive and collaborative."

Sarah Monson

Sarah Monson, MBA 2014

Hometown: McHenry, IL
Education: Marketing, Ferris State University
Work Experience: Associate Marketing Manager, Laura Moore Godek, P.C.

"When I was deciding on schools two things were very important to me: quality and value. After visiting campus and sitting in on a class, it became clear to me that Tippie had the quality I was searching for as well as Business Week reports, the ROI at Tippie can't be beat. Attending Advanced weekend really gave me insights on what my social life at Tippie would be like and made me excited to head back to school. This year has been above and beyond anything I expected and I'm so glad I made the University of Iowa my home for graduate school."

Jeff Curran

Jeffrey Curran, MBA 2014

Hometown: Davenport, IA
Education: Economics, Political Science, Cornell College
Work Experience: Labor Market Economist, State of Iowa

"The breadth of the marketing academy made it appealing to me. We could be studying product entry into a new market one class and the use of promotions for an established brand the next. The great thing about marketing is that it takes place throughout the entire product life-cycle and is critically important across nearly all industries. I also enjoy that it focuses on top-line growth as a way to drive bottom-line profits."

Sean Nehf

Sean Nehf, MBA 2014

Hometown: Itasca, IL
Education: : B.B.A. Finance from the University of Iowa
Work Experience: Nearly 4 years of corporate finance experience for IBM and Accenture

"I want to shift to marketing so that I can provide value for a company/client’s initiatives. Tippie provides many experiential and leadership opportunities to achieve this goal."


Second-Year Students

Melanie Jordan

Melanie Jordan, MBA 2013

Hometown: West Jordan, UT
Education: Geography, Brigham Young University
Work Experience: Manager of Client Relations & Project Management, ProviderPay

"I decided to pursue the marketing track here at Tippie because I feel it will best provide me with a foundation for getting into the type of work I’m most interested in: Product Management and Client Relations. I am also doing a minor in finance to strengthen my understanding since it is so closely related to marketing and every other business function. The marketing track has a lot of flexibility in it to take courses that are interesting to me and that I feel will really allow me to fill any gaps I have in my skill set. After attending Advance Weekend last spring and meeting some of the other students at Tippie, I was excited to begin building relationships with so many smart, fun people. I love that people here are willing to help each other.”

Jessie Modi

Jessie Modi, MBA 2013

Hometown: Niles, IL
Education: B.S. Finance, University of Illinois in Chicago
Work Experience: Product Manager, Kent Nutrition Group

“Having worked in brand and product management for the last eight years, I understand the 'real life' application of many marketing concepts. Being a Finance undergrad, however, I never learned all the fundamentals from which the concepts are developed. I came back to earn an MBA to develop this foundation as well as further develop my skills. Some of the most valuable insights I have had this year relate not only to classroom learning, but also include self-awareness and team-building.”

Shawn Moon

Shawn Moon, MBA 2013

Hometown: Alpine, UT
Education: B.A. Communications/Public Relations, Brigham Young University
Work Experience: Assistant Account Executive, Connect Marketing

“After spending a few years in a PR agency, I decided I wanted to be more involved in marketing and strategy on the client side. Marketing allows me to directly contribute to the success of a company through a combination of creative and strategic thinking. One of the reasons I chose Tippie was because of the personalized experience. Many other MBA programs claimed to offer a personalized experience, but Tippie was the only one that proved it to me before I decided where to go. Also, Iowa City is a big enough city to have things to do, but small enough to offer my family the pace of life and type of community they enjoy.”

Blaine Rourick

Blaine Rourick, MBA 2013

Hometown: St. Ansger, IA
Education: BBA in Marketing and Management, University of Iowa
Work Experience: Health & Safety Instructor, American Red Cross

“I attended the University of Iowa for my undergraduate degree, so I already knew a lot about Tippie and the benefits of attending a smaller program without compromising on quality of education. I have an innate curiosity for how and why people behave the way they do, which makes marketing perfect for me. My goal is to have a career where I look forward to going to work every day - a place where I can be an effective leader and inspire people to live up to their full potential. Over the last eight months, I have met so many people from different backgrounds, careers and even countries. I know I am among great company here at Tippie.”

Chris Majekodunmi

Chris Majekodunmi, MBA 2013

Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria
Education: B.S. Engineering, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria
Work Experience: Business Development Manager, Shell Nigeria Gas Ltd.

“My goal is to work for a large international company - and marketing is simply too strategic to any business for an executive to ignore or outsource. I chose
Tippie for my MBA because the program has an excellent reputation in marketing.  I am happy to take a break from the fast paced city life I lived in the lovely metropolitan lagoon city of Lagos.  I love the greenery here in Iowa City. The trees in their Autumn beauty are lovely to behold before the city goes white for  winter.”


2012 Graduates

Riley Lind

Riley Lind, MBA 2012

Hometown: Iowa City, IA
Education: B.S. Engineering, Purdue University
Work Experience: Design Engineer, Honda R&D Americas, Raymond, OH

"I always grew up wanting to be in the automotive industry, so I got my engineering degree and started at Honda. However, it was there where I realized what I really wanted to do: Product Planning. I want to be one of the people who make a real impact about the upcoming vehicles, and in order to do that I needed to learn marketing. I chose Tippie because I'm from the area and familiar with the program. I knew that it would be a great education, personal attention, and all at a great price. Really it's the best value you can find out there."

Bill Rue

Bill Rue, MBA 2012

Hometown: Holmdel, NJ
Education: B.A. History, Catholic University
Work Experience: Therapeutic Sales Professional, GlaxoSmithKline

"From my sales experiences I've had the opportunity to influence purchasing behaviors at the customer level. But, I really enjoyed using data to uncover opportunities in the market and then develop a strategy to capitalize on them. My desire to refine my analytical skills drove me towards an MBA, and I chose Tippie because of the personal attention and renowned marketing professors. I will also get opportunities to do hands on projects work as the consulting project, and start to put some of my new skills into practice. With the formal education and practical experience I hope to go into either healthcare consulting, or brand management with a medical device manufacturer."

Kelly Peacock

Kelly Peacock, MBA 2012

Hometown: Davenport, IA
Education: B.S. in Biology, Genetics and Biotechnology Track, University of Iowa
Work Experience: Store Manager, Vanity Shop of Grand Forks, Inc.

"By the time I'd finished my undergraduate degree I had already spent 6 years working in retail sales. The two years after completing my degree, when I was working as a store manager, is when I really started to look past my own store and started asking questions about the way my company was operating and the way corporate was making decisions. I was constantly questioning merchandising strategies and marketing tactics that corporate passed down to the stores to implement. I decided that I wanted to understand these choices and to be the one making them. Going back to school for my MBA was vital for me to change careers since I had no formal business education. Choosing Tippie was easy, with its highly ranked Marketing program and the encouragement I felt from the faculty all the way through the application process, I knew it was the right place for me."

Andrew Topps

Andrew Topps, MBA 2012

Hometown: LaGrange Park, IL
Education: BJ '06, The University of Missouri School of Journalism
Work Experience: Sports Reporter/Anchor KOMU (NBC) Columbia, MO; KQTV (ABC) St. Joseph, MO; Sports Web Content Producer (Oklahoma)

"Marketing is the essence of journalism, whether broadcast, print, or online. A journalist has to figure out not what stories are important, but how to present in a manner that will attract the most eyeballs. After all, eyeballs = $. So it seemed like a pretty natural transition from the world of journalism to marketing. Tippie offers one of the best marketing faculty and programs in the country. Its return on investment is second in the nation which was a big selling point for me."

Katy Marescalco

Katy Marescalco, MBA 2012

Hometown: Kenosha, WI
Education: B.A. in Journalism from Marquette University
Work Experience: Marketing Director and General Manager, Sheridan Lanes

"Marketing is as essential to small businesses as it is to large corporations, yet frequently they lack the time, resources and staff to put adequate energy into their image, branding and growing digital presence. At Sheridan Lanes, the integration of social media, a renovated web presence, and email marketing brought the bowling community to a new level of connectedness, breathing life (and profits!) into an out-dated industry. With a Tippie MBA, I hope to merge my practical experience with a strong foundation in marketing and management theory and someday pursue my own entrepreneurial visions."

Mayuresh Bedekar

Mayuresh Bedekar, MBA 2012

Hometown: Mumbai, India
Education: Bachelors in Food Engineering (University of Mumbai, India) and Masters in Food Science (University of Leeds, UK)
Work Experience: Development Technologist and Project Lead, Glanbia Nutritionals, UK

"I was always passionate about the food industry and wanted to pursue my career in the commercial side of the business. Behind every successful product lies a sound marketing strategy. I always wanted to be a part of this and decided to pursue MBA in Marketing from Tippie for few main reasons - its location in mid-west at the heart of the US agriculture and food industry, its excellent faculty and career services department as well as the small class size that provides numerous opportunities to learn and excel."

2011 Graduates

Meggie Schuelke

Meggie Schuelke, MBA 2011

Hometown: Houston, TX
Education: B.S. in Commerce, Marketing & Management, University of Virginia
Work Experience: Marcom Product Manager, Hewlett-Packard, Cupertino, CA

"I always knew I wanted to go into marketing. I chose the University of Virginia over Stanford and Harvard because of the marketing coursework, and now I've joined Tippie for its marketing program. Growing up, I always questioned things like, why do they play cereal commercials during cartoons, or beer commercials during football games? Marketing is a field where you really get to look at every aspect of business, plus it's very dynamic and, for me, an exciting place to be."

Matt Hareldson

Matt Hareldson, MBA 2011

Hometown: Plymouth, MN
Education: B.S. in Business, Luther College
Work Experience: Withholding Management Rep, Convey Compliance Systems

"I've always been comfortable with numbers, so naturally I chose a career in finance initially. At my last job, I had the opportunity to work with the product management team on a large project, and it solidified my decision to change careers. To gain the skills to become a successful product manager, I knew I needed an MBA, and after a long search, Tippie was my top choice. Tippie's highly ranked marketing program, combined with small class sizes, would ensure that I would get a first-rate education, and have consistent access to professors who would be more than willing to aid in my career shift."

Brian Wadsworth

Brian Wadsworth, MBA 2011

Hometown: Cedar Rapids, IA
Education: B.A., Business Administration, Illinois Wesleyan University
Work Experience: Operations Management, Yell Adworks (a division of Yellowbook)

"My background is in management, but marketing was always part of my job.  As a store manager for a retail store, I witnessed people's purchasing decisions firsthand, but wondered why they decided what they did. I conducted "experiments" to identify influencers that would increase sales, such as placement or bundling. At my last job, I learned the intricacies of advertising theory. When the opportunity arose to go to business school, I wanted to concentrate on an aspect of business that I found both intriguing and challenging: marketing."

Aric Asplund

Aric Asplund, MBA 2011

Hometown: Grinnell, IA
Education: Management & MIS, Luther College
Work Experience: Territory Development Manager, Office Depot, Outside B2B Sales

"Coming from a background in sales, I learned that the ability to form lasting customer relationships is vital. Marketing includes sales and much more. I know as part of the marketing academy that I'll get many chances to do hands-on work, many times for real clients. I hope to combine my past work experience with my experience at Tippie to earn a leadership role in marketing."

Tara From

Tara From, MBA 2011

Hometown: Dodge City, KS
Education: B.A., Journalism & Spanish, Baker University
Work Experience: Marketing Director, Amigos de las Americas (nonprofit)

"Marketing is powerful in the nonprofit sector; it's essential to increasing volunteer participation, funding, and credibility. I came to Tippie to gain additional marketing expertise so that I can maximize my positive impact in future positions. Tippie's marketing academy offers a rigorous curriculum, experiential learning opportunities, and committed mentors. It's set up to help me gain the skills I need to have a successful marketing career."

Mitch Tanney

Mitch Tanney, MBA 2011

Hometown: Lexington, IL   
Education: B.A. Mathematics & Spanish, Monmouth College
Work Experience: 4 years of professional football (Swedish SuperSeries, IFL, AF2, AFL)

"Like most of us, I have definite buying habits. As a player, for instance, I always felt comfortable wearing a pair of Nikes on game day. I knew they didn't help me run faster or throw farther (though I surely could've used the help). Yet, every season I wore the same brand. Why did I feel I could personally relate to the Nike image? What influenced my purchasing decisions? As a Tippie marketing MBA, I'll learn the answers to these and many other questions, and use them to positively impact my future employer's bottom line."