Apr 02, 2012

Sit down and stay a while

By Pete. T'13

One of the great things about being up in Hanover is that when executives come to visit or to help lead a case discussion in a class, they come up here for more than just that. You see, when you come to Hanover you can’t exactly just swing by. So when executives come up here (or rarely down here), they usually stay for an entire day. Throughout the day Tuck Students have the opportunity to meet with the executives in more intimate settings. Generally an executive will have a luncheon with 10 students, one-on-one office hours with multiple students, and a dinner with 6-8 students. I have been lucky enough to attend quite a few of these events and learn something from each one. It is great to have the opportunity to speak candid with someone who has led or started a business. The executives range from the CEO of J. Crew to the Director of Health Care at Citigroup; from partners at a large Private Equity Firm to the former CEO of ING. Some are Tuckies and some are not. It really runs the gamut.
Recently I had dinner with the CEO of St. Jude’s Ranch. St. Jude’s Ranch is a nonprofit business for orphaned kids. The ranch was on the brink of failure until Christine Spadafor came in and turned it around. It is now a thriving business looking to expand and is completely out of debt. A second year student wrote a case on the turnaround and the professor brought Christine up to lead the discussion. Although I was not in the course, I was able to enjoy dinner with Christine and learn how and why she did it. It was a fascinating story and a great opportunity to learn from a business leader in the nonprofit sector.

The visiting exec program is robust at Tuck and just one of the unique aspects that makes the Tuck community so special.