From Business Boot Camp Student to MBA Candidate: Katie McKenna’s Journey at Molloy

Recent graduate Katie McKenna's relationship with Molloy started in high school. As a junior, the Wantagh, New York, native attended the College's Business Boot Camp. From that experience, she learned that she wanted to pursue Business as a major and she enjoyed what Molloy's program in particular had to offer.

When she was a senior in high school, Katie applied to Molloy's competitive Business Honors program and enrolled as a Management student in the five-year MBA program.

Learning Outside of the Classroom

Katie McKennaPart of the reason Katie chose Molloy for college is because she knew she wanted to study abroad. As a commuter student, she was able to save money on housing and use it towards educational travel experiences. Katie went on four International Education trips through the College. One of the trips she went on was to London through the Business Honors program. While there, she toured the Bloomberg offices, which was exciting by itself, but what happened when she was back at Molloy made the experience even better. "After I came back to New York, I visited the Bloomberg offices here in the City. It was so interesting to be able to compare the two offices. Also, it was cool that they already had me in the system from my trip to London," she says.

Katie studied abroad the spring of her junior year at St. Mary's University in Twickenham, a suburb of South West London. While at St. Mary's, she took an International Business course with students from countries such as France and Italy. "It was a great experience to be in the classroom with peers from outside of the United States. I got a completely different perspective on business," she says.

Getting a Well-Rounded Education

For Katie, the Business classes she took as an undergraduate at Molloy were invaluable. "I was able to gain real-world experience in the classroom, and I felt so prepared for my internships and now my job. For example, we learned how to give presentations in a business environment. By the time I was a senior, I was very comfortable speaking in front of an audience, and I know that if I were called on to present at my job, I would be able to do so," she says.

While Katie says every class has helped prepare her for her career in one way or another, the Business Capstone in particular was filled with applicable learning opportunities. The Capstone class, taken in Business students' senior year, is structured so that undergraduates work with an actual client and provide business strategy advice. Katie's Capstone group, taught by Professor Dawn DiStefano, was assigned to former Green Bay Packer Gary Brown, a Long Island resident looking for help with his foundation. Students were charged with keeping in contact with their client throughout the semester and presenting their ideas directly to him for his review. Almost a year later, Katie is still in contact with Gary, and he has asked for her assistance in creating a website for his foundation. 

Transitioning From Internship to Career

In addition to giving Katie a strong academic foundation, the Business program helped Katie secure two internships, one of which directly led to her new job. The summer after her freshman year of college, Katie interned at Newsday in an events marketing role. The following summer, she started at Lifetime Brands as a marketing intern. Her focus was on public relations and social media marketing. She stayed with the company for the rest of her college career, with the exception of the semester she studied abroad. This spring, she received and accepted an offer to work at Lifetime full time as an Assistant Category Manager.

After graduation in May, Katie made a short trip to London to visit friends she had made during her time abroad, and then started right away in her new position at Lifetime Brands. She is now in the bakeware division of the company, working with the Category Manager to bring products to market. Katie is also working hard to complete her MBA degree in Spring 2018. Classes are already in session.