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Brandeis International Business School Alumni Spotlights

Alumni profile Jose Rodolfo Villamariona, MBA '11

Helping build businesses in El Salvador

Jose Rodolfo Villamariona, MBA '11

“The quality of the faculty is amazing. The professors here are very interested in the students. They care about your learning.”

Olaf Unteroberdoerster, PhD

A PhD Trailblazer

Olaf Unteroberdoerster, PhD '98

Traveling and working with people from Europe, North and South America, Asia and Africa, Dr. Olaf Unteroberdoerster MS ’98, PhD ’98 has lived a life filled and enriched with memorable international experiences.

Sam Soltani, MSF '10 Alumni Profile

Businessman with Business Experience

Sam Soltani, MSF '10

As Chief Operating Officer, Sam Soltani, MSF ’10 is the sole member of BioSensics’ impressive management team who has actual business experience.

Alumni profile for Nils Tessier du Cros, MBA '11

International, sustainable businesses

Nils Teissier du Cros, MBA '11

"I wanted to be part of a 70 percent international student body. I wanted to be surrounded by people of different cultures and nationalities."

Richard Peck, MSF '01 Alumni Profile

An Emerging Career

Richard Peck, MSF '00

“We were able to see living, breathing examples of what we were talking about in the classroom play out on a global stage."

Profile photo of Brandeis alumni Ewa Maria Nucinska, MA '11

A Fulbright scholar studying international finance and policy

Ewa Maria Nucinska, MA '11

“We work in teams on a daily basis and there’s this sense of mutual understanding and equality.”

Thomas Stretton, MBA '11 Global Green Alumni

Saving Earth One Business at a Time

Thomas Stretton, MBA '11

“I honestly think the world is at a crossroads, and I want to be part of the force that moves it in a positive direction.”

Boris Vilidnitsky, MSF '09 Alumni Profile

Investing in the Future

Boris Vilidnitsky, MSF '09

“I felt prepared coming into this job but the learning curve is still steep... I’m open to any opportunities that arise, and I am excited to see what happens next.”

Image of Alexei Ponomarov, MBA '12

All About Adjustment

Alexei Ponomarov, MBA '12

A native of Lvov, Ukraine, Alexei Ponomarov, MBA '12 excelled in courses such as Financial Theory, Marketing Management, Management Communication, and Operations Management.

Image of Ari Alushaj, MSF '10

Global Education - Global Career

Ari Alushaj, MSF '10

“I always looked forward to class–spending time with my fellow students and hearing lectures from amazing Brandeis professors. It was such a stimulating environment.”

More Alumni Spotlights  
Sigridur Hardardottir, MA '10 Brandeis IBS Alumni

Changing the World, One Rubber Band at a Time

Sigridur Hardardottir, MA '10

Can a rubber band change the world? Sigridur Hardardottir thought so. Hardardottir began the Do-Band Project during her time at Brandeis International Business School.

David J. Williams, MBA '01 Alumni Profile

Career Takes Off at United Airlines and Boeing

David J Williams, MBA '01

Beginning as an intern at United Airlines, Williams progressed to the role of senior economist at Boeing Commercial Airplanes.

Alumni Spotlight Demetris Papadopolous

Human Resources Award Recipient

Demetris Papadopoulos, MA '00

Brandeis IBS graduate, Demetris Papadopoulos, MA '00, received an award at the 2009 Human Resource Executive (HRE) magazine's fourth annual Rising Stars competition.

Francisco Niclos Negrao, '00, MA '01 Brandeis IBS Alumni

There's No Place Like Home

Francisco Niclós Negrão, BA/MA '01

It's an exciting time for Francisco Niclós Negrão ’00, MA ’01, an economist and lawyer based in São Paulo who specializes in antitrust law and international trade for major national and international corporations.

Edward K Gondwe Brandeis IBS Alumni

Senior Governance Officer, African Development Bank

Edward K Gondwe, MA '06

"My work at the African Development Bank has offered an experience at the forefront of the campaign to bring economic development to the world."

Jake Jolly Brandeis IBS Alumni

Economist, IHS Global Insight

Jacob Jolly, MA '11

"I strongly believe that the economics courses at Brandeis IBS provided me with the skill set, and most importantly the macroeconomic intuition, necessary to quickly analyze macro data and produce insightful economic reports."

An image of alumni Gregory Benac, MA '03

The Link Between a Poker Table and Asset Management

Gregory Benac, MA '03

Gregory Benac, MA ’03 had only played in one live tournament before he decided to put his skills to the test in the World Poker Tour in Paris last March.

An image of Zala Ahmad MA ’12, Fulbright scholar, honored by the State Department for her efforts to improve primary and secondary education for young Afghan girls

Fulbright Scholar and State Department Guest of Honor

Zala Ahmad, MA '12

Zala Ahmad, MA ’12 was honored at the State Department for her efforts to improve primary and secondary education for young Afghan girls.

Alumni profile for Paul Walborsky

Making News Global and Social

Paul Walborsky, BA/MA '89

Paul Walborsky '88, MA '89 is chief executive of GigaOM, the Silicon Valley-based media company that has emerged as a highly influential voice in the world of business and technology.

Mauricio Gojman, Brandeis IBS Alumni

Equity Investor Rebelling Against Tradition

Mauricio Gojman, MA '01

"I love starting things," says Gojman. "I love creating and I rebel from the traditional corporate box—something I’m allergic to."

Yuki Hasegawa

Going Global with Goldman Sachs

Yuki Hasegawa, BA/MA '10

Yuki Hasegawa '09, MA ’10, a human resources analyst at Goldman Sachs, helps manage training and development programs for the investment bank’s most important asset: its talent.

Alumni Profile of Sonia Gisenya

An eye-opening, inspirational summer

Sonia Gisenya, MBA '11

"It was eye-opening and inspirational to see how these projects and programs change people’s lives." --Sonia Gisenya

Andrew DeGuire Brandeis IBS Alumni

Helping firms reduce environmental footprint

Andrew DeGuire, MA '95

Andrew DeGuire is a VP at Johnson Controls Inc., which helps businesses shrink their environmental footprint and lower their electricity bills.

Alumni profile for Ram Iyer, MBA '09

Excelling in the Global Marketplace

Ram Iyer, MBA '09

How did Ram Iyer, MBA '09 land a job at EMC? The Brandeis IBS alum talks about the knowledge and skills he acquired during his time earning his degree, and how they proved to be crucial in the workplace.

Wilifred Nonguierma

Gain Experience in Poverty Reduction at the African Development Bank

Wilfried Nonguierma, MA '11

"My experience at AfDB reinforced my desire to work for an institution that’s doing development work in Africa," says Nonguierma. "It didn’t matter how hard the workload was—people there were so committed."

Alumni Profile for Amit Pinjani, MBA '08

Selected as a Boston MBA All-Star

Amit Pinjani, MBA '08

"It became clear to me that the developed world needs to take the lead on alternative fuels."

Alumni profile for Sam Sam Sisakhti

Fashion and entrepreneurial success

Sam Sisakhti, MA '07

As the founder of UsTrendy, Sisakhti is giving customers a say in the style before they hit the production line.

Keeping up with a Busy Schedule

Daniel Goldsmith, MBA '06

“What’s great about Brandeis IBS is the emphasis on cross-cultural communication and working in different environments.”

Image of Myra Chaudhary BA/MA ‘10 and former MA Senator John Kerry

Blogging to Improve U.S.-Pakistani Relations

Myra Chaudhary, BA/MA '10

Myra Chaudhary, BA/MA ‘10 was a recipient of the Brandeis IBS American Leadership Award during her time at Brandeis IBS, a recognition of her outstanding potential for an international career.

Image of Roni Ben-Aharon, MBA '08

Following your Passion

Roni Ben-Aharon, MBA '08

“It’s courageous to ask yourself if you're doing what you're doing because you're good at it or because it’s what you want to do," she said.

Zenobia Moochhala

Brandeis IBS' role in an online entrepreneurial career

Zenobia Moochhala, MA '98

Recently named one of the BBJ's "40 under 40," Zenobia Moochhala, MA '98 is Co-Founder, VP and General Manager of US Consumer Subscription Services at

Nabeela Alam, Phd '13

New faculty member at Grinnell College

Nabeela Alam, PhD '13

Primary Fields – Applied Microeconomics, Political Economy, Economic Development

Rawley Heimer, PhD '13

On staff at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

Rawley Heimer, PhD '13

Primary Fields - Finance, Macroeconomics
Secondary - Behavioral, Investments, International Finance, Econometrics, Financial Networks

Eugene K, PhD '13

On staff at the Federal Communications Commission

Eugene Kiselev, PhD '13

Primary Fields – Economics of Corruption, Institutional Economics, Industrial Organization
Secondary – Health Economics, Empirical Finance

Satyam Panday
, PhD '13

On staff at Standard & Poor's

Satyam Panday, PhD '13

Primary Fields – Labor Economics, Applied Econometrics, Development and Transition Economics
Secondary – Computational General Equilibrium, Applied Microeconomic

Anna Guelzim

Game, Set, Match

Anna Guelzim, MBA '11

Guelzim cites Brandeis IBS as one of her most invaluable experiences in a path to professional success

Amy Kessler

Embracing "intelligent risk" at commencement

Amy Kessler, BA/MA '90

To Kessler, who earned her undergraduate and master’s degree at Brandeis, taking “intelligent risk” is paramount to success.

An image of Esteban Ferro, PhD '10

From soccer captain to the World Bank

Esteban Ferro, PhD '10

Esteban Ferro, PhD '10 shares how his work at the World Bank will help his native country, Ecuador.

An image of Nikolay Vassilev, MA '97

Former Bulgarian deputy prime minister on the European economic crisis

Nikolay Vassilev, MA '97

Former deputy prime minister of Bulgaria Nikolay Vassilev: ‘I owe my professional ideology to Brandeis IBS’

An image of Anushka KC, MBA '13

Bringing the heart of Nepal to America

Archana KC, MBA '13

After winning the Leonard J. Asper Startup Award and Bunson Investment Challenge, Archana KC, MBA ’13 spent the summer building a new enterprise that found her taking a three-week trip to Nepal to meet with local farmers.

An image of Marshall Santoso

The key to a successful career? Networking

Marshall Santoso, BA/MA '13

Now working at Ernst & Young, Santoso attributes his success to networking: “The key to looking for a job is to not worry about the job.”

An image of Jordan Fliegel, MBA '10

Bringing entrepreneurship into the sports world

Jordan Fliegel, MBA '10

‘Whether it’s sports or starting a company: it’s all in the execution.’

Split my taxi logo

Entrepreneur on a ride

David Zadok, MBA '12

How getting stuck at an airport drove David Zadok’s latest venture.

Mirza Amiri

From Kabul to Brandeis and back again

Mirza Amiri, MBA '09

Amiri champions his native Afghanistan’s "beauty, productivity, and its resilient and spirited people."

Image of Pasquale Nuzzo

Deepening understandings of global economics

Pasquale Nuzzo, MSF '00

The Italian-born treasury-management expert went from not speaking a word of English to becoming a senior vice president at Capital One in New York City.

Bernardo Tannenbaum, MA '14

Eager to learn more about the fast emerging field of digital marketing, Bernardo decided to apply for a summer internship at inSegment Internet Marketing Company, located at Newton, MA.

Wenyu interned at Superstar Investment Group in Chino, CA

Wenyu Zhang, MA '14

“I interned at Superstar Investment Group, Inc., in Chino, California, a private company operating in miscellaneous inter-mediation industry.

Shuliang interned at ElmTree Funds, LLC

Shuliang Ni, MA '14

“During the summer, I did a 9-week internship at ElmTree Funds, LLC, a private equity real estate investment firm in the U.S. focused on commercial real estate net lease, sale-leaseback, and build-to-suit opportunities.

It’s great to see that WCJ has made a positive difference in people’s lives.

Ari Mahller, BA/MA '02

Finally, after spending several years learning about the industry and developing my network, I founded West Coast Jewelry in January of 2007.

The best part of the job is that I don’t have set “day-to-day” responsibilities

Pia McCusker, MSF '00

"In 2008 alone, I had to visit clients in South Africa, Australia, UK, Spain, France, South Korea, and Slovenia."

Ezra Levine, MSF '11

"I am keenly interested in international capital markets, so a primary motivation was the diversification and the international exposure Brandeis IBS provides."

From India to the United States: a transformational MBA experience

Shweta Raisoni, MBA '13

“I wanted a place where I could hone my technology and marketing skills but more importantly, I wanted a school that gave me exposure to different cultures."

A Successful MBA Career: From India to Boston

Shekhar Pareek, MBA '12

“To be a successful product manager you need two things," says Pareek. "A global perspective and an eye toward innovation."

Global real estate program provides key to success at home

Gaohan "Zack" Zhang, MA '14

“Brandeis IBS gave me the courage and confidence to challenge myself because I knew no matter how hard things could get, I was not by myself."

Johanna Silverio '07, MA '08, MBA '11

Three Brandeis degrees for one accomplished alumna

Johanna Silverio, BA/MA '08, MBA '11

Among Brandeis alumni, Johanna Silverio has a rare distinction: she holds not one, not two, but three degrees from the University—including an MA and MBA from Brandeis International Business School (IBS).

Cecilia Maya

From Colombia to Boston and back again - making a global impact

Cecilia Maya, MA '00, PhD '04

Though Cecilia Maya grew up in Medellín, Colombia and attended college there, she always dreamed of going to graduate school overseas. “I wanted to study abroad because I wanted to live in a place with a different culture and surround myself with people from other countries,” she says.

Ebenezer Amoh, MA '13

"What I love about Brandeis is that it gives you the freedom to explore."

Ebenzer Amoh, MA '13

Ebenezer Amoh showed an early aptitude for finance in his hometown of Accra, Ghana - a skill that would lead him to Brandeis IBS and a job at Pricewaterhouse Coopers Boston.