Mark Digney was at a fork in the road. He was actively involved in his family farm, was a detective at the sheriff’s office and had a degree in marketing. What impact would an MBA have if he stayed in law enforcement?
Mark researched the MBA program and consulted with one of his undergraduate professors at Ambrose. He was told, “No matter what you do, the MBA will make you better. It will open a door you can’t even see.” He enrolled.
Now, with graduation on the horizon, he’s already made leaps and bounds as the newly minted investigator at John Deere Worldwide security. Mark explains, “The MBA program prepared me to move from law enforcement to corporate security much sooner in my own career. What I learned helps me in investigations involving everything from human resources to high dollar theft/fraud.”
In his/her own words:
Why did you choose Ambrose?
Having done my undergrad at Ambrose, there was an element of familiarity, and I live close to campus. But more importantly, I knew from prior experience that the classes are small, the schedules are flexible and the vast majority of faculty members approachable. The professors go out of their way to stretch your learning experience as far as it can go.
Corporate security was my goal, and I landed my dream job about 10 to 15 years before I expected to. The advanced degree accelerated my path to get here. At Deere I’ll be allowed to go overseas to do investigations concerning theft, workplace violence, due diligence and dealership difficulties.
How has the program prepared you for your current job?
Deere is a company that puts emphasis on the advanced degree, regardless of what you’re looking to be hired into. You’ve got to learn how to speak to the important issues: investigations into individuals in their actions with company policy; human resource management; human behavior and organizations; what motivates people to do things that might be improper.
Most of the coursework to date has some impact on this job. Classes like financial management and accounting are helpful when I’m doing financially-driven investigations. It’s important for me to be able to follow the money trail.
The program teaches you to think in broader terms. You become aware of what other departments in a business do. You learn to collaborate rather than compete.
Did you get more from your degree than you expected?
Absolutely. Professors took a personal interest in the path I was taking and what my outcome would be. And I learned a lot from my classmates. The diversity of personalities and backgrounds makes for a good team environment.