Zarb Student Success Stories
Name: Maurice Tompkins
Major/Degree: MBA/Sports & Entertainment Management
Hometown: Central Islip, NY
Why did you come to the Zarb School?
My choice of the Zarb school was fueled by practicality. I studied in Ohio for my undergraduate degree, and was looking to stick closer to home for an advanced degree. Hofstra had the best program on Long Island.
I interned in the summer during my two years at Zarb at a small music/arts nonprofit. When I told the director of the organization I was studying at Zarb, he welcomed me with open arms. The experience I gained in my first year of the degree program, and the Zarb schools reputation got my foot in the door and prepared me for what would be one of the most rigorous occupational exercises I have ever performed.
I am currently an Executive Team Leader at Target. I would never have been considered without my Zarb School credentials, but it was the interview training I received from the Career Center that helped the most. I was fortunate to have a campus job at the Career Center, so I took advantage of the opportunity and picked the counselors’ brains every chance I could. Retailers had come and held open hours and interviews, which helped me gain more insight into the interview process for retail management. My assigned career counselor helped me the most. We held mock interviews where she guided me and gave me great feedback.
I love my new job at Target! Everyday poses a different experience. I get to meet and interact with all kinds of people…retail is a very interesting industry.
How did the Zarb School prepare you for your career?
During my coursework at the Zarb School I learned about supply-chain management and leadership, which are the two biggest things I use every day. Presentations skills are a necessity when I’m interacting with customers. There are also the “hard skills” that I learned as well, like interpreting financial reports and understanding metrics. In my current role, I begin everyday comparing sales forecasts, goals, and actual sales across departments, something that the Zarb School prepared me immensely for.
What is your favorite memory/experience at the Zarb School?
It is hard to pick just one! I will just say that I will always cherish the friendships that I have made at the Zarb School. I made some of my closest friends during orientation. We worked on projects together, conquered tough classes together, and graduated together. I know we will continue to lean on each other as we grow in our careers.
What advice do you have for students who want to follow in your footsteps?
I would say simply have an open mind. I studied music in my undergraduate degree, and now I am in retail management. Even while I was enrolled in the Zarb program, my focus shifted a number of times. A student might start in one area and then take a particular class that they really love and decide to run with it. And don’t forget to have fun. I had more fun in my two years at Zarb than in my four years of undergraduate studies. Finally, one must take advantage of everything. I worked at the Career Center and know personally just how many great programs are offered. Students should do their best to always be proactive, attend events, meet new contacts, and leverage those relationships.