When she initially thought about pursuing an MBA, Holly Tsourides was sure that at the age of 40, it was too late.
“I was worried that the ‘right time’ had passed me by,” she said. “When I contemplated I’d still be working for the next 20-plus years, I decided to go for it. I needed to prepare myself for more attractive options and the ability to drive my next chapter.”
Holly began studying management and strategy books, watching videos and discussing her MBA goals with her company’s CEO. Through this process, she rediscovered a love for learning that motivated her to get an MBA. After deciding to take the leap, she started exploring different programs. The Kellogg Executive MBA Program at the Miami campus immediately stood out as the right option for her.
“I only applied to Kellogg. It was the obvious choice as I learned more about the EMBA Program’s emphasis on true learning electives and community,” Holly said. “If I was going to invest my time in an MBA, then I was going to do it with the best quality students and professors.”
As a working mother and a lover of the outdoors — she says she would sleep outside most nights if she could — Holly had always dreamed of launching a startup to get more people camping. She says that the Design Your Own Journey within the Leadership Development Program helped her make a career pivot from her previous role at Alkami Technology to starting her own company, Sunny75, an online community for campers.
Even with more than 20 years of functional sales and marketing experience under her belt, including 10 years in C-suite roles, Kellogg has given Holly new insights into teamwork and leadership.
“It is not hyperbole when I say that my learning at Kellogg fundamentally changed my thinking and behavior,” she said. “I definitely learned to be a better teammate. The study team structure was unique for me. It had been a long time since I had been a part of a self-organized team of peers.”
Holly says that after Kellogg, her goals are to continue building her knowledge, bring her new product to market and build Sunny75 into a successful and enduring company. And, of course, she adds, stay in touch with all of the dear friends she made at Kellogg.
As a mom of two, Holly says she’s thankful her children have gotten to witness her going back to school to pursue her EMBA.
“It was satisfying for me to know my kids were watching me study, work hard and sacrifice to reach this goal,” she said. “What better way to teach them the value of education?”