Dan Kessler '15G

Master of Business Administration

Dan Kessler

Dan Kessler pulled off the dream of most college students in 2008 when he parlayed a summer internship at EMC into a job right out of college in the data storage and software company’s marketing department.

Today, he is an integrated marketing program manager and hopes to have a long career at the Hopkinton-based company. But Kessler also knows that to continue advancing his career, he needs a master’s degree.

“A lot of the internal job listings are MBA preferred or MBA required,” says Kessler. “Framingham State was one of the programs recommended by the company, which is great because I grew up in the area and was familiar with the University.”

EMC is among a handful of major companies in the region that are part of the Advisory Council for the FSU MBA program. Employees at these companies receive discounts on MBA courses at the University.

The program is designed for mid-level managers and professionals in business and other organizations who aspire to greater leadership and management roles.

“I think one of the strengths of our program is that it helps students access untapped potential and set greater goals for themselves,” says Program Coordinator, Dr. Sharon Wulf. “They begin envisioning themselves in leadership roles and ask, ‘Why not me?’”

Kessler, who will graduate this spring, agrees with that assessment. “I’ve had the opportunity to meet some great professors who challenge you to think a little differently,” he says.

In fact, Kessler recently impressed his bosses at EMC with his ability to think outside the box. When the company’s marketing department launched a contest based on the television show “Shark Tank” that was aimed at generating innovative ideas from employees, Kessler’s proposal was among the best. He immediately embraced the challenge and even kept a blog of his experience as he developed and practiced pitching his idea in front of his wife Ashley and dog Charlie. “It was a good way to keep the challenge fun,” he says.

The idea—which he pitched on a film set with a live audience—was to offer current and prospective clients a free assessment of their storage systems by a third party. Those with storage issues would be provided with information on products that EMC provides to address the problems, and those without issues would appreciate the free service and hopefully think of the company as a trusted advisor moving forward. The pitch was one of two that were successful.

Kessler says he couldn’t be happier about his time at EMC, and is excited about his future. “I love the company, I love my co-workers, and I love my manager,” Kessler says. “It feels much more like a family environment.”