Student Profile: Operations and Management
Neal Reiter í10
Summer internship: Yale University, McAfee Inc.
Co-president, Operations and General Management Club; co-president, Latino Leadership Association
I grew up in the Bay Area, and after finishing college I worked for five years at Lockheed Martin doing supply chain and operations management in their defense aerospace division. My job was to ensure the successful build and delivery of satellite subsystems that would help support the warfighter.
The thing I liked most about Lockheed Martin was that itís a mission driven organization. You donít work there to make a lot of money; the rest of Silicon Valleyís there for that. I was being fast tracked at Lockheed Martin, but knew that as a non-engineer I would eventually hit a wall. It was the perfect time to go back to school and as I looked into MBA programs, Yale SOM jumped to the top.
It was clear Iíd learn the skills here I need to succeed. But I was ultimately attracted by the importance of mission to SOM and the people I met when I visited here. At Lockheed Martin, I was surrounded by intelligent people, most with PhDs. Yale is even more so. Itís not just that people here are so intelligent, but that their knowledge covers such a broad spectrum. I remember coming for Welcome Weekend and discussing the Galileo satellite constellation with someone who was in the fashion industry. Where else could I do that?
Iím co-president of the Operations and General Management Club as well as the co-president of the Latino Leadership Association. Both clubs have been important to my time here. In the operations club, we spend a lot of time learning how to help firms work better, a crucial part of management that often gets overlooked. To see how this is accomplished we visited various businesses including a lock factory and a casino. The two are very different businesses, but for both, efficient, well-run operations are a key to their success.
Over the summer I split my internships between consulting for Yale, where I used my operations experience to revamp their shipping system, and McAfee, where I worked on a strategy project for their CEO. Both were great experiences.
As I move through my second year at SOM, I think one of the best things has been how the small class size really enhances the experience. There are 190 students in my class and nearly all of them are friends. If thereís a job that thatís up my alley, someone will point it out. They know me. And if I come across an interesting job, I know who to talk to because we all help each other out.
Interviewed on September 30, 2009.