Rochester Colonial Manufacturing Corp.
A key component of Fisher’s MBA program is the capstone project, a field experience where student teams consult with local businesses to address a business challenge or need. Participating businesses benefit from high-quality student research and professional-grade recommendations, and MBA candidates receive valuable real-world experience working with clients. One business that has worked with Fisher’s MBA program is Rochester Colonial, a local company serving residential, industrial, and corporate customers for more than 70 years.
In his role as a division director for at Rochester Colonial Manufacturing Corp., Tim Forster has worked closely with MBA candidates from Fisher. He was impressed with their professionalism and efficiency. “They were excited about the project and looked at this less as a class assignment, and more as a legitimate opportunity to help their customer,” he commented.
Forster described the capstone process as both valuable and enjoyable. He emphasized the value of the research and data provided during the span of the project. When asked whether he would recommend a student from the Fisher MBA program to a colleague or industry peer, he didn’t hesitate to answer. “Definitely,” he replied, describing the students he worked with as strong and “a cut above.”
Eric Johnson '18
Constellation Brands, Inc.
Eric Johnson ’17, ’18 (MBA), is exploring the world of finance one department at a time. As a financial analyst at Constellation Brands, he is pioneering a new multi-year employee program that includes rotations in four departments over three years. This unique opportunity allows him to explore a broad range of career paths in finance, and to gain a rich understanding of key business areas.
Johnson credits the small class sizes, group projects, and one-on-one conversations with his professors at Fisher for preparing him for life in the workplace. “The ability to connect with others and establish relationships helped me get the most out of my Fisher education and is now helping to kickstart my career,” he shared.
As an undergraduate, Johnson searched for his niche within the accounting field. With the help of faculty, he connected with Fisher alumni to discuss their professional experiences and ask for their advice. He added a second major in corporate finance and later obtained an internship at Constellation Brands, moves that ultimately led to his current role.
Johnson enjoys the range of projects, challenges, and initiatives he has the opportunity to participate in and looks forward to growing professionally at Constellation Brands. He encourages students to take advantage of the Fisher alumni network. “Fisher has a strong, wide, passionate network of alumni who are more than willing to share their experiences and provide advice,” he said. “Use that network and don't be afraid to return the favor, there will always be Fisher students seeking advice about life after Fisher.”
Maya Smith ’19
Wegmans Food Markets
When Maya Smith was researching local MBA programs, she found Fisher’s philosophy of building skills in collaboration and personal relationships resonated well with her.
“I really connected with this approach and looked at this program as more than just me receiving an MBA, but an opportunity to build my character and sharpen my skills as I strive for advancement in my career,” she recalled.
While in the program, Smith said the array of classes available meant she could take a deep dive into topics that sparked her interest. Through courses in lead innovation, social marketing, and creative and critical thinking, Smith was able to relate class material to her job.
“I was challenged to think of innovative ways to enhance the current state of my workplace, understand how the world is becoming more digital, and identify different bias as a way to more cohesively interact with others,” she explained.
A nine-year employee of Wegmans Food Markets, Smith currently serves as a merchandising intern and is on a path to work within the merchandising department.
“I see myself as a future leader in the company and have goals of one day serving in more senior roles where an MBA is required,” she said. “Once I get to this level, I will have great work experience under my belt along with an education received from the Fisher MBA program to help me succeed in my future career endeavors.”
Chad Wright ’17, ’19
The Upstate Bank
As vice president of accounting and information systems for The Upstate Bank, Chad Wright ’17, ’19 (MBA) helps organizations leverage technology to develop efficiencies in their operations.
His work at Upstate earned him a place on the Independent Banker’s 40 Under 40: Emerging Community Bank Leaders list. To further his career goals and hone his expertise, Wright enrolled in Fisher’s MBA program, earning his degree in May 2019.
“I chose the St. John Fisher College MBA program because of the advantages afforded to undergraduate students when they continue their education at the MBA level,” Wright said. “It is great to continue learning at a higher level from some of the same professors I had built relationships with during my undergraduate years.”
Calling his education “extremely valuable,” he also uses his business acumen as a member of the board of The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, as well as being involved with Project Management Institute’s Rochester chapter.
“The recognition of our MBA program in the professional community makes the time and effort spent working towards this degree well worth it,” he said. “I plan to leverage my MBA to work in a consultant type role helping multiple organizations achieve their goals.”