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Executive Scholars Program: Adding Value to an Organization’s Success

From working effectively across teams to gaining the skills to be promoted, Kellogg Executive Scholars are making an impact. Scholars say their education has boosted their professional development and help them successfully tackle the challenges that face their organizations today.

“Each course touches upon each other from a high level and gives you a complete picture of all the different functions of an organization,” said Plamen Petrov, chief enterprise architect at the BlueCross BlueShield Association. “Everything you learn is practical and very much to the point. The teaching is not watered down. You walk away with tools and practical in-depth knowledge that you can apply immediately.”

The Kellogg Executive Scholars Program provides executives a way to attain new knowledge or sharpen specific skills in an intellectually rigorous environment on their own schedule. Scholars complete a track of four-to-five programs in a subject area and receive a Certificate of Professional Achievement that range from financial management to marketing and sales.

Plamen Petrov’s experience at Kellogg has helped him work more effectively with teams from sales to finance in his role as chief enterprise architect at the BlueCross BlueShield Association.

Heather Ruiz said her education gave her the confidence to hit the ground running when she moved from the multicultural marketing team to the general market advertising team at Verizon Wireless.

Tom Bagwell returned from his courses and implemented two programs that increased productivity and improved marketing at his company.

And Julie Seo has set herself up for a career in marketing that complements her business development and strategy expertise after earning Kellogg’s Certificate of Professional Achievement in Marketing and Sales.

These are just some of the success stories of Kellogg Executive Scholars. These scholars say their Kellogg education has boosted their professional development and help them successfully tackle the challenges that face their organizations today.

The Kellogg Executive Scholars Program provides executives a way to attain new knowledge or sharpen specific skills in an intellectually rigorous environment on their own schedule. Scholars complete a track of four to five programs in a subject area, ranging from financial management to marketing and sales, and receive a Certificate of Professional Achievement. In addition, scholars receive Kellogg alumni status, gaining access to more than 55,000 alumni in various industries worldwide.

“Each course touches upon each other from a high level and gives you a complete picture of all the different functions of an organization,” Petrov said. “Everything you learn is practical and very much to the point. The teaching is not watered down. You walk away with tools and practical in-depth knowledge that you can apply immediately.”

For instance, after Bagwell completed certificates of achievement in marketing and sales management and general management, he quickly implemented two programs at California-based equipment supplier Peterson Cat. Bagwell and his colleagues founded a continuing education program for the firm’s sales team and created a cross-functional team to target new customers. Three of Bagwell’s colleagues are also Kellogg Executive Scholars.

“We’ve been through some pretty challenging times, but the reason we’ve been able to come back to Kellogg is that we demonstrate the value of the classes we take,” said Bagwell, director of marketing and sales at Peterson Cat. “We come back to the company with new ideas and ways to make processes better immediately.”

Other scholars credit their Kellogg education for advancing their professional development. After completing her certificate in sales and marketing management, Ruiz said she led strategic initiatives that made a bigger impact and influenced her peers more effectively at Verizon. Her superiors took notice and promoted Ruiz to a coveted position in advertising and media.

“One of the best things about Kellogg is that you’re reminded to stay on track for your own career development,” Ruiz said. “The education helps you get to the next level. The coursework opens up your potential and gives you ideas that help you do work that makes a difference. Your superiors see the potential in you and you see a boost in your own confidence.”

In each of their programs, scholars have the opportunity to network and learn from other executives who represent various countries and industries. Seo said the collaboration and conversation among world-class faculty and her Kellogg peers have elevated her managerial skills.

“I learned how to bolster my own view among other highly-educated people and converge other opinions with my own,” said Seo, who is based in South Korea. “I have to live a real-world life and these classes have taught me to refine and update my skills and knowledge.”

Petrov said that his four Executive Scholar Certificates have helped him collaborate more effectively across the various teams at BlueCross BlueShield.

“With every course, you get a complete understanding of the different pieces of that specific function,” Petrov said. “My education has allowed me to work with our finance, marketing and sales teams and fully understand their language and needs, what their focus is and where they are coming from.”

Bagwell said that the Kellogg education has been outstanding from his first course, citing the practicality of the curriculum and the teaching from high-quality faculty. He knows his experience will serve him well for years to come.

“The magic of Kellogg is that there is so much to do and apply at my company from what I’ve learned,” Bagwell said. “Kellogg has sharpened my skills, opened my heart and changed my life.”

Breakout: Kellogg Executive Scholar Program at a glance

Executive Scholars are awarded Certificates of Professional Achievement after successful completion of an approved selection of executive programs at the Kellogg School.
  • Four to five courses required
  • Six tracks to choose from: Financial Management, General Management, Leadership & Management, Marketing & Sales Management, Nonprofit Management, Technology & Operations
  • Up to five years to complete
  • Automatically enrolled after you take first qualifying program
  • Kellogg alumni status after completion, including access to 55,000 alumni and invitations to alumni events
  • A 30% discount on all two- to five-day executive programs held at the Allen Center, with the 30 percent discount extended to two colleagues enrolled in the same program as the Executive Scholar

Enroll in the Executive Scholar Program today

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