A Father and Son’s Global Mindset Leads to MBAs at Scranton

When Sunil Pillai G’83, of Mumbai, India, was finishing up his MBA at Scranton at age 23, he promised himself that if he eventually got married and had a child, that child would go to Scranton for his or her MBA.

“God has been kind,” said Sunil in a recent interview. “I had one son. And his name is Rathin.”

It was pretty clear from early on that Rathin Pillai G’12, who, like his dad, grew up in Mumbai, would follow in his father’s footsteps.

“My dad had his framed final certification on the wall at home. He’d say to me, ‘That’s the degree that has gotten me this far. You can talk back to me all you want, but until you have that degree, I won’t listen,’” remembered Rathin.

Like Father, Like Son

Rathin had a lot to live up to. Sunil had gone from Scranton to Pfizer International in New York to Colgate Palmolive in India, quickly moving up the corporate ladder. He eventually became vice president of marketing and sales at CavinKare, a conglomerate in fast-moving consumer goods, then vice president of marketing at Reliance Communications, Global Operations, and, most recently, COO at Tata Teleservices. He is currently a guest faculty member at IIM Bangalore and founder and director of Strategy Green Consultancy.

“I owe this whole career of mine to Scranton and the education I got there,” said Sunil. “It got me to move from being just a young kid playing around in the streets of Mumbai to be a formative professional in the way I looked at things.”

Rathin, a TV executive who recently took on a strategy and business development role at India’s Network 18 (Viacom in the United States), said it was essential — for both of them — to go abroad for their graduate degrees.

“I think I speak for both of us when I say we needed a global perspective. Had we studied for our MBAs in India, it would’ve been specific to India marketing only,” he said.

Sunil and his son both chose Scranton because it had a good reputation, was a “friendly campus” and was close to major cities. Although the two graduated about 30 years apart, they had a campus friend in common — Murli Rajan, Ph.D. G’84, now interim dean of the Kania School of Management. Rajan was Sunil’s roommate in the ’80s and became a lifelong friend.

Paying it Forward

Sunil paid it forward when Rajan arrived in Scranton from India for his MBA just a year later. Rajan traveled directly from the airport to the Hotel Jermyn on Spruce Street, where the other international students were staying while they looked for more permanent housing.

“Sunil called me as soon as I got there. He found out where I was staying,” said Dr. Rajan. “I don’t even know how he did that. We spoke the same language; we both speak Tamil. I couldn’t believe it. He just made me feel so welcome.”

When Rathin arrived in 2010, he found out that his dad’s friend would be his adviser. Having that personal connection was a comfort to Rathin, but he said he felt on level with almost everyone at Scranton.

“I never felt alone on that campus or in Scranton in general,” said Rathin. “It’s not just the students; it’s the professors as well. They made me feel at home right from the start.”

Sunil said his own acceptance into the University community made it possible for him to focus on his studies and excel in his courses.

“I grew into a professional at Scranton,” said Sunil. “I learned to understand the world better.”

He expanded his global knowledge when he went on to work in India, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and East Africa. And now, as he sits in his house gazing out at the Arabian Sea, he looks back with pride at his experience in Scranton, where it all began.

_________________________________________

Learn more about the MBA program at The University of Scranton here!

This article originally appeared in The Scranton Journal.

An MBA Is the New Bachelor’s Degree

Earning a bachelor’s degree is commendable, and increasingly important in the workplace. But those trying to stand out as an employee or job applicant should consider attaining an even higher level of education. Many employers want to see a master’s degree, and it may be in your financial interest to get one.

According to a Washington Post report, those with a master’s degree can expect to earn $457,000 more over the course of their career than those with just a bachelor’s degree. Also the number of jobs that require a master’s degree are projected to increase at a much higher rate than other jobs, through 2020.1

A master’s degree today is as prevalent as a bachelor’s degree was in the 1960s, according to Vox, which also said that a master’s degree in business administration is growing faster than other master level degrees.2 In 1971, 11.2% of all master’s degrees were in business. By 2012, that percentage more than doubled to 25.4%.

A Practical Degree

An MBA is useful in fields as diverse as accounting, healthcare, manufacturing, information systems, logistics, telecommunications, retail, finance and banking, law, consulting, pharmaceuticals, hospitality, insurance, and engineering. The degree is increasingly important in business today.

Today, with modern technology, it’s easier  than ever for aspiring students to get a quality MBA degree!

The MBA  is used as a screening tool by employers to find the most qualified candidates with the advanced education necessary for the job. Showing a willingness to invest time and money to get additional education signals to the hiring manager that the candidate is serious about their career.

The University of Scranton’s MBA program offers both  broad-based study in all aspects of business, or a focus in a specialized area such as accounting, operations management, healthcare management, human resources, international business or enterprise resource planning.

The Payoff

According to data from head hunter Career Bliss,3 those with master’s degrees usually earn more than those with bachelor’s degrees. For instance, a business manager earns on average 22% more with the advanced degree than with a bachelor’s degree.

For more information on how an MBA can help you, check out The University of Scranton’s MBA Program.

______________________________________________________________________________________

Sources:

1http://www.washingtonpost.com/sf/brand-connect/wp/2014/03/14/overall-trends/
2http://www.vox.com/2014/5/20/5734816/masters-degrees-are-as-common-now-as-bachelors-degrees-were-in-the-60s
3http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20110817006495/en/CareerBliss-Data-Reveals-Top-10-Jobs-Master%E2%80%99s

 

13 New Students will Benefit from a Scranton DBA Education

The University of Scranton welcomed the second cohort of students into its doctor of business administration (DBA) program.

Douglas M. Boyle, DBA, associate professor, Accounting Department chair and DBA program director, faculty from the DBA program, University Trustees and DBA students who entered the program in the fall of last year, joined together to help orient the new students into the program at a welcome session on campus.

Housed in the University’s Kania School of Management, the DBA program began in the fall semester of 2017.

The University’s DBA program, with a concentration in accounting, was developed to provide experienced practitioners with a practical pathway to an academic career. The program offers participants flexibility, while still providing for the development of the knowledge and skill set necessary to become a “scholarly academic” – one who is qualified to teach at a school of business that possesses or is seeking formal accreditation by Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International).

The incoming DBA students are:

Shea N. Burden of Athens, Ohio;

Felisha N. Fret of Great Neck, New York;

Anuradha (Anu) C. Ghai of Allentown;

Jessica L. Hildebrand of Mountain Top;

Hugh Lambert of Rochester, New York;

Ran Li of Potsdam, New York;

Alexis C. Montelone of Bensalem;

Afia A. Oppong of New City, New York;

Linette Rayeski of West New York, New Jersey;

Savas Saymaz of Whitehall;

Charles Speicher of North Attleboro, Massachusetts;

Ashley L. Stampone of Old Forge;

James W. Sunday of Scranton.

Click here to learn more about the DBA program at The University of Scranton!