Working Toward Shared Goals: Classmates Make the Difference
Taking on the challenge of a graduate degree program while working full-time is always hard, but finding camaraderie in your classmates can help your chances for success or failure.
For Matthew P. Sullivan, MS Technology Management ’04, his classmates made the difference.
Sullivan says, “Being part of a cohort with a group of smart, diverse, supportive, and fun individuals was a great motivator throughout the program.”
Sullivan pursued his Masters in Technology Management degree to enhance his business and management skills after taking on an expanded role at a technology marketing agency in Washington, D.C. “A close friend and recent graduate had great things to say about the program. After doing further research, I decided the curriculum and schedule were exactly what I was seeking and would give me the credentials I needed to benefit me long term.”
For Sullivan, Saturday classes were ideal. He took his lessons and immediately applied what he learned at work the following week.
From the first course, Sullivan knew his Mason education was helping him in his career. At the time, he was facing a challenging situation, managing a team that was distributed across three offices. “In the first few months in Interpersonal Dynamics we learned strategies that were directly applicable to managing a geographically dispersed team,” says Sullivan. “The class made me a much more confident manager.”
Sullivan says one of the most rewarding experiences of the program was working toward a shared goal with a group of accomplished classmates—an attribute he missed upon graduating. “I was surprised by how much I missed the camaraderie and the intellectual work out that came from spending time in the classroom each week.”
As a regulatory attorney focusing on consumer protection law, Sullivan has been able to merge his interests in the law, marketing and advertising, and consumer technology. “To a certain extent, current laws are not designed to keep pace with evolving technologies, so it’s very exciting to represent clients facing novel legal issues that have substantial implications for their business.”
Sullivan is currently an associate at the law firm of Kelley Drye & Warren in Washington, D.C. His practice includes representing companies in all forms of consumer protection matters, from counseling on advertising and privacy matters to defending federal and state regulatory investigations.
Sullivan hopes to continue to grow his legal practice by solving complex business and legal issues for companies operating at the crossroads of marketing and technology.
Mason’s Masters in Technology Management added more to his career than the classroom education. Sullivan says he was able to maximize the value of the degree by establishing and maintaining personal connections with classmates, faculty, and others that he interacted with during his time at Mason.
“Mason’s proximity to the Northern Virginia tech industry and Washington, D.C., is hard to beat. The result is that Mason has a strong local network of graduates that take on substantial roles at many leading companies in the region.”