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Newly minted alumni doing great things

The Shammami family at UDM's Inaugural Gala. (Left to right): Brent ’04, Lubna }97, and Feras ]97.

Two of UDM’s 2004 graduates are thriving in the world of industry. Both Yalda Ghorashyzadeh and Brent Shammami excelled during their time at UDM; now they are becoming leaders in their chosen fields.

When Ghorashyzadeh began her MBA studies at UDM, she had two small children and wanted to make a career change. “I needed flexibility without compromising on quality.”

She had been accepted to other graduate schools, but “UDM offered a world-class education with flexibility, and it promised a complete career change…I wanted to pick my own curriculum, and I wanted the small classes and personal attention, and I needed to study part-time.”

The relative maturity of the MBA students also appealed to her. “It helped that not everyone was fresh from undergraduate studies. There were many middle and senior managers from Fortune 500 companies—that, together with the small classes, yielded invaluable discussions. I worked closely with people who were already involved with the issues we were studying.”

Going to school while raising her young family was a juggling act, but all the hard work paid off when Ghorashyzadeh was recruited by the DaimlerChrysler Services Energy Group. As an 11-member consulting group made up of only those holding MBA or higher degrees, they are deployed within DCS as project managers. After two years, they will be placed in leadership roles.

She says her UDM education raised her awareness of ethical and moral issues, giving her the ability to “see the forest while not missing the trees. We were taught that every business decision, every personal decision, every dollar we make, impacts others. We should consider the community, our employees, our families and the world. UDM should be proud of how its ethical education sensitizes students.”

Brent Shammami agrees that UDM prepared him well for his current situation. Since August, he has been a business support analyst for Comerica Securities, providing desktop and technical hardware and software support to securities representatives.

Says Shammami, “As much as I didn’t like them during school, group projects really helped me learn to work with others. UDM is a diverse school, and there were times that I wouldn’t see eye to eye with someone, but we would always work it out. With the job I’m in right now, you get thrown right into a variety of situations, and the group experiences help you adapt and deal comfortably with others.”

He adds, “In the CIS program, staying up-to-date is paramount. That habit has proven valuable, and I’ve also been able to pick up new skills very easily by extrapolation from what I already know. The CIS program forces you to learn how to do that.”