India 2019

Reflections, Relationships, and Building Connections

“What’s the world for you if you can’t make it up the way you want it?”

                                  -Toni Morrison

In 2010, one of my MBA students delivered a welcome note to the incoming class. He said, “Force yourself to be in uncomfortable situations because you’ll learn more about yourself.”

This was my second trip to India and this time was just as uncomfortable as my last. It was as beautiful as I left it. Colorful as I remembered. Busy as I experienced. And everything about it was perfect. 

Why uncomfortable? Being in unfamiliar territory is terrifying but so rewarding at the same time. I’ve traveled to 15+ countries. Each visit holds a place in my heart and fuels my mind with memories to puzzle back together as I share my story now, tomorrow and moments ahead. 

Aside from the 50+ hours I spend working, on the road, making phone calls, running dashboard reports, planning events, attending those events, interviewing applicants, etc…life as a recruiter is not for the faint of heart. It’s a lifestyle. 

Speaking of lifestyle— think about your current life. If there’s one element you couldn’t live without, what would that be? For a village I visited, grid electricity wasn’t easily accessible. 

Project Chirag, an initiative of Chirag Rural Development Foundation, is one of India’s largest youth-driven initiatives providing solar lighting to villages that have no access to grid electricity. Founded in March 2010 by young students and their faculty advisor, Project Chirag has a clear vision – Light for All.

Can you imagine living day-to-day life without access to electricity?  

The district we went to had 4 villages around close proximity and we installed solar panels in 17/20 homes in this town. Their overall goal is to light all 101 homes across the district. 

Here is the link to Project Chirag website if you wish to read about their work: and a short video from my time at the village. 

If there is one core competency a great recruiter should possess (IMHO), I’d say the ability to build and maintain connections. They are relationship seekers and opportunity givers. I am forever thankful that my career allows me the opportunity to provide people with the chance to better themselves personally and professionally. Not only have I gained a solid professional network, but also a circle of friends and supporters from students, colleagues and faculty.

And what brings people together? Mmm hmmm, that’s right: food! When I travel abroad for work and pleasure, I make every effort to eat what the locals eat and share the experience with fellow recruiters and alumni. One of my favorite experiences from recruitment trips is reconnecting with alumni at their fave restaurants. What’s an international trip without trying their local grub?! And trying it with a friend who can order for you. 

In Bangalore, one of the Willamette MBA students connected me with his sister. My time in Bangalore was tough; I got bit by what doctors thought was a spider. I’m allergic to anything that bites me, so this was no surprise. Except for the fact that it got infected and I was stuck in my hotel room for 2 days. I couldn’t apply pressure as it was swollen and just straight up awful. You can imagine the #FOMO I experienced and I was beyond excited to meet my student’s sister and her friend! What a day: we shopped at Mantri Mall and then they guided me through street shopping and auto riding. Check out the video to see my #Uber adventure!

So you guys, this was my second time visiting the #TajMahal and it was as magical as the first time. And much cooler; the weather called for only 70% humidity this time. Of the New 7 Wonders of the World, I’ve visited 2: The Great Wall of China and The Taj Mahal. The Taj was built by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan for his favorite wife’s tomb, Mutaz Mahal. It’s quite the love story. Childhood lovers, he was from royalty, she wasn’t. His father didn’t approve of her, but love has no limits. She was his third wife and before she died of birthing complications, she made him promise to never marry again. Like, seriously? He loved her so much that he made that promise. Isn’t history beautiful? 

Well, there is so much about this trip that I want to share, but it’s about 7am and I’ve been up for about 22 hours now. For you young professionals out there itching to travel and seek a career that’s fulfilling, my #1 advice is what my former MBA student shared in 2010, and that’s to put yourself in uncomfortable situations (stay safe of course). Then take time to reflect on those situations and ask yourself what the late #ToniMorrison once said, “What’s the world for you if you can’t make it up the way you want it?”

Here’s one last video with more pictures and video from India 2019.


I write this as I sit patiently for my flight to take off to Mumbai. After an 11-hour flight from San Francisco to Munich, I’m pumped because I slept 6 hours on that flight. I knew I had a ton to do when I settled at the hotel so getting that rest in was crucial. 

Always forward-thinking — my mind tends to think 2 – 3 steps ahead. I anticipate the madness and try to plan for it. 

Priorities continuously shift. Every Sunday evening  I review my calendar for the week. Every night before I go to bed I review my calendar for the next day. Appointments, meetings, and deadlines control my life. If it’s not on my calendar, I’ll likely not commit. If I request that you send me a calendar invite, it’s because I care. 

My priorities change and align with where I am in my professional career. I categorize them in 2 parts: career and health. 

Priority 1: Get my physical and mental health in check

Priority 2: Finish my MBA

Priority 3: Spend time with family and friends

My sister-in-law told me that you can only really juggle 3 priorities at once. When you exceed 3, the quality and effort diminishes. If you are like me and tend to look at every priority with urgency, I highly recommend trying these to help you stay grounded:

  • Accountability Groups/Partner

Success is not achieved alone and that’s when I can count on my people to hold me accountable for my actions. Not only do they cheer me on, but they also have similar goals, ambition and drive to never settle for less. Accountability works best when you all share common goals and share no judgement. You feel the struggle together and can talk each other out of losing motivation.

  • Practice Self-Care

I take this for granted and get caught up in the grind. Having some type of routine adds a bit of structure to my life. My self-care routine involves training with a fitness coach 3x a week at West Coast Strength and spending at least 1 day a week, alone. I am so thankful to have a trainer that works with my travel schedule. He prepares workouts that require minimal equipment that produce the same benefits as if I were with him at the gym. 

My alone time is when I can recharge and I typically do this on a Saturday or Sunday; it depends on what I have going on and when I can spend time with family and friends. If I have a group project due for school, I adjust my schedule. 

This is a work in progress and I always welcome suggestions. What does self-care look like for you?

  • Make time for your relationships

Quality time with family and friends is so important for my well-being. I’m a single working professional and student, so the time I spend with them is extra special to me and really, I prefer it over dating. That’s a different story, though. Maybe I’ll share some dating stories in a different post. Maybe. 

In the past 6 months or so I’ve made a point to carve out time to FaceTime with my family and visit my best girlfriends. Even if it’s 3-4 hours during the weekend, the quality time renews my soul while staying up to date with family and friends. 

Spend time with those who make time for you. Period. 

  • Throw away that “all or nothing” mentality and celebrate the small wins

I’ve definitely spent time planning a weight loss strategy and career growth plan. And I 

have definitely quit when I went off plan.  Yeah, don’t do that. Instead, brush it off and celebrate what you’ve accomplished. Even if it’s 2 consecutive days of working out or just getting yourself outside for a walk…the hardest part is getting out there. Small wins add up to bigger success. Don’t give up if you skipped one day on your meal plan. If you got an F on a midterm, you know what, you made it halfway through the term and you have control of what’s next. Stop buying the prettiest organizer and planner, just get yourself out there, grind and hustle. 

Juliet’s Story

Before you read other posts by me, I think it’s important for you to know my upbringing and how much of it has influenced my personal and professional career choices. 

I identify as a Filipino-American woman, deeply rooted in my culture and family. A culture of resiliency, hard work, and damn great cuisine! Family is always number one; friends are family; and strangers are never judged and always welcome to the next family party (fully equipped with karaoke and dancing). 

I was taught to be resourceful and work with what you have. Earn your way to the top with grace, tact and always smile.

My story is about to get real intimate…

My Mother and Father | How My Life Experiences Influenced Me

In the 1960’s, my father seized the opportunity to enlist in the U.S. Army.  This was his ticket to leave the life he was tired of living, in a small province in the Philippines.  A typical dinner for him and his 5 siblings included a small 3.5 ounce can of sardines and white rice. Split between them. He barely finished high school. He had to find work when he could to buy rice for the family.  “It was all about survival,” he’d say, “me and your mom want you to have what we couldn’t have.  Finish school, work hard, travel the world and take care of your health.”  

Flash forward to 2013 to a conversation with my mother after the deadliest typhoon, in modern time, hit the Philippines.   “Mom, you don’t seem to be worried about this typhoon.” Her response, “Juliet, I have lived through many typhoons.  They destroyed our home. We always prayed. Then we rebuilt our house and moved on.  This happened often and we always rebuilt our home.  Filipinos are strong independent people.  We find joy in the very simple things in life because growing up, we didn’t have much.  We had each other.  We made things work with what we had and we never let anything or anyone take our joy away from us.”  My mother grew up near Manila. Unlike my father, she graduated from college and went off to university. 

What do they have in common?  They are both the “anchor” for their families.  They left the Philippines to find opportunity and renewal.  Their happiness was a result of helping others. My motivations in life can be attributed to them; how they’ve educated me on my Filipino culture and how they’ve shaped my notion on life.

Family group FaceTime keeps us together since we are all located in different parts of the U.S.

Integrity and Friendship | A Pivotal Moment in my Career

During the 2008 Financial Crises and Presidential Primaries, I landed my first professional job.  Start date was a week after graduation. The first part of dad’s advice to finish school, done. I also discovered in my early 20’s the power of integrity in the workplace and the influence of friendship in your personal life.  

I was an eager, dedicated, ambitious, overachieving ex-musical theater major.  My dreams of singing on Broadway were crushed after orientation when I sat between a prima ballerina and a formally trained opera singer.  The competition was real. My claim to fame was being cast as the understudy for Mother Abbess in high school musical, The Sound of Music.  Then my senior year, I was asked to sing the National Anthem at a televised science fair.  I was on TV; it counts.

I worked hard to ensure that I could stay in Orange County and not return home after graduation.  After 16 revisions of my resume, a stack of personalized business cards that read, “PR for HIRE,” with purple bubbles symbolizing my personality, I was offered a job with a right-wing public affairs firm as an account coordinator.  I negotiated a salary that was $5,000 more than what I was offered and managed to live the ideal life of a young professional in Orange County.  

Three months into the job, my values were tested.  I was assigned Proposition 8, which argued that same-sex marriage was unconstitutional.  This was against everything I believed in.  Minutes after I was thrown this campaign, I called my best friend.  Passed the verge of tears I explained to him that I was stuck and didn’t know what to do; I didn’t have an alternative plan.  No other means of income.  I needed this job to pay for bills.  With an open heart and non-confrontational voice, he said, “Thank you for calling me and thank you for being honest.  Stop crying. It’s okay.  I will always be your friend no matter what happens.  I know what you believe in and that’s what matters.”  I finished off the season with enough saved in my bank account.  I resigned from that position the morning after Election Day.  

Then and Now | How It All Started

After three months of unemployment, my professional career in higher education began as an admissions assistant for a seven-year-old MBA program in San Diego, CA.   The face of the admissions office. The “MBA Cheerleader” my boss at the time, called me. I was tasked to create and implement application processes. I quickly managed my way up to student affairs responsibilities.  Advising adult students on why they are not enrolled in their one credit seminars. Planning orientation. Organizing their textbooks. I was a 24-year-old telling student (most are managers and business owners) what to do.  It was a sort of, tough love type of relationship I had with the students, but at graduation, after their families thanked me for pushing them, students realized that it was all worth it.  

After two promotions, I landed the most coveted role of a traveling recruitment professional.  Second part of dad’s advice to travel the world, done. I strongly feel that cultural understanding can only, and truly happen after one visits and immerses them self.  I traveled to India, Taiwan, China, Japan, South Korea, Mexico, Colombia and Peru. I made every effort to experience these countries like a local. Wandering through neighborhoods.  Shopping at local markets and grocery stores. Braving their public transportation. Learning phrases in their language that would gain their trust to help me find my way. My advice for aspiring world travelers: learn how to say, hello, goodbye, thank you and nice to meet you, in their language. And eat their food.  

Quick plug: while you are reading this post, I’ll be in India! Look out for my posts documenting my second trip to this magical country filled colors, history and phenomenal food. 

After approximately five years of recruitment travel, managing and coaching 8 student undergraduate workers, supervising over 15 student ambassadors, self-awareness started to kick-in.  I was tired. My travels were no longer fulfilling. I needed a break. I needed to focus on renewal. 

My Real Self: Renewal and Rediscovery

As part of the renewal process, I left California.  When I moved to Oregon 4 years ago, I knew I’d be starting over again.  New job. New friends. New everything. I was excited for this. I’ve found a place at Willamette University as a recruitment professional.  My career at Willamette has been the catalyst for fostering my personal and professional growth. Since starting, I was a board member, joined professional committees, completed 2 leadership programs and getting my MBA.

Leadership Portland Class of 2017

Willamette MBA Orientation Happy Hour

My Ideal Self: The Mother, Wife, Friend, and Business Woman

When I think about living the Super Life, I think about my ideal self. My ideal self is me as a mother, wife, loyal friend and businesswoman; living in a house where the neighborhood kids want to hang out after school and on the weekends. I am the anchor in the family and my business; managing the culture and how it impacts everyone. My house is the central point for meetings and gatherings with friends and family.

A normal day will begin with an early morning workout (possibly meditation) and at least 2 hours of work before switching gears to mom and wife.  My husband knows that I am high functioning in the morning and will allow me to manage most of my responsibilities in the morning. These responsibilities include: answering work emails, house chores, cleaning and meal preparation for the family.  After my husband and kids are taken care of, I switch to businesswoman and check-in with my team.

Team check-in includes a simple conversation with managers for a report on their direct reports and how I can help them and their team in achieving their weekly goals. Once a week I treat my team to lunch.  As the day ends, I switch from businesswoman to mom and wife. Kids return from school (and activities) then prepare for homework as I wind down from work. My husband knows that by the time the kids are done with homework, it’s his responsibility to check-in with the kids and prepare them for dinner, then evening prayer before bedtime.

When the kids are in bed, I switch to wife and check-in with my husband. We share our highs and lows for the day, how we can better support each other and we end the evening.

My ideal self pulls elements from my upbringing; what I’ve learned from my parents and my professional experiences.  My family and my career are what make me.  

I live life with high expectations in myself. It’s something that I struggle with: that all or nothing mentality. I’m in this pursuit to change that because the small wins matter the most. My awesome boss always reminds me, “Jules, this is a marathon, not a sprint.”

What are your current struggles and what are you doing to manage them?

My Top Tips for New MBA Candidates

#WillametteUniversityMBA #SuperLife #Salem #MBA, #embracethesuck #hustle 

You’ve decided!

You can always reach us at

You will seek to improve your career prospects and leadership skills by pursuing an MBA. So now what? I don’t have all the answers, but halfway through my MBA program, I’ve identified some helpful nuggets of advice I wish I had received before I started graduate school. My loss is now your gain!

Many MBA bound professionals are driven, highly motivated, with very full plates. You see, we all intuitively understand that time is limited and we must pursue our interests and goals in haste. But now you’re committed to getting your MBA, something must give. 

1. Simplify! 

Start by simplifying your schedule. Give up activities and hobbies of lesser value for the sake of your future success. I highly recommend you err on the side of caution on this one. Start by dropping the unproductive time-wasters, the mindless activities you may pursue for casual amusement to dismiss boredom. Think of the endless hours of excessive and nonessential video streaming, facebook scrolling, snapchatting, twittering, etc. Make your entertainment budget lean and meaningful, cut out the excess and keep those things that recharge you, bring you inspiration, and are important to you. 

If you’ve leaned out your schedule and still don’t have time, think of compounding activities. Listen to your readings while you work out or mow your lawn. As I type this I’m sitting on the sidelines at my son’s soccer tournament waiting for game #2 of the day. Bits of time are everywhere, you just need to be prepared to seize the moment to squeeze in your study time.                                                                                                              

2. Set Expectations 

I strongly believe that one of life’s most important skill sets is managing expectations. My younger self was awful at this. I sought to impress and I would often overcommit and as a result disappoint. I’ve grown slightly wiser (at least on this front), and I now work on under-promising and over-delivering. I understand I’m busy, I know I can’t do it all today, so if I commit, I ensure I give myself enough time to deliver. Ironically, this method has improved my reputation for delivering and for being reliable. 

It is essential you set expectations with your supervisor, work-team, and family before you start the program. Explain to each why you have decided to pursue your MBA, how this will benefit you in the long-run, how they may benefit indirectly, and how they can help you on the journey. Without my wife’s support, understanding, and patience, I would not be able to succeed in this program (or in life!). It is not a stretch to say that my entire family and social circle is working on getting my MBA. 

3. Find your support circle

Great, you’ve leaned out your schedule and set expectations. Now it’s time to find your support circle. These are the individuals that are genuinely interested in your success. Spouses, mentors, supervisors, parents, children, fur babies, etc. These very special individuals will be your fountain of energy when frustrated, stressed, and exhausted. Remember their kindness and encouragement, as this will help you push through the long study nights, the tough exam, and the personal challenges that arise as a consequence of pursuing your MBA. Take advantage of the short session breaks to enjoy their company and express your gratitude. When taking a break, be present and give them your undivided attention. You will be making more social withdrawals than deposits during your MBA journey, so make sure you make every deposit of time and energy count. 

Willamette University’s Atkinson School of business operates on a cohort model. I’ve found that this model promotes strong collaboration and social cohesion. Many of my current classmates have helped me with classwork, recommended resources, and have been an excellent sounding board for all sorts of ideas. It’s easy to fall into a competitive mode with your classmates, trust me I get it. However, you must remember that even though you may compete on some assignments, in the end, you’re all in it together. 

4. Be grateful and enjoy the ride. 

Finally, don’t forget that you’re part of an elite class of human beings working to improve yourself through graduate school. It won’t be easy, but if it was anyone could do it and it wouldn’t be as fulfilling. David Goggins, ex-Navy Seal and “Mr. Endurance,” talks about “embracing the suck”. Mr. Goggins recognizes that progress and change, especially of the dramatic variety, requires struggle. Be grateful for the opportunity you have to improve your life and enjoy the ride. Remember that the struggle is necessary. Embrace it for what it is and come to terms with it. Preparing yourself mentally for the struggle will give you a headstart and keep you sane and motivated when the balls your juggling start to drop. 

How to Conquer Your Mind and Embrace The Suck | David Goggins | Goalcast

You can find more helpful posts on our website:

5 Ways to Celebrate Study Breaks During Shark Week!!!

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You have a Case Study due Monday in Finance, an extra assignment due Tuesday in Marketing, and a ton of reading you need to finish up this weekend. Not to mention you still need to shop for groceries, do some laundry, clean up around the house, etc… What’s that, oh yeah those are all things I actually need to get done,,, shoots.  

Well, even sleep deprived hard-working grad students need to take a break every once in a while. The best researchers will say you can’t spend every waking moment studying, or maybe that was just my conscious. Anyhoo, what better way to take a time-out then by getting revved up for Shark week 2019! Yeah buddy, the “fintastic” adventures continue for “sharkaholics” around the world. Starting this Sunday July 28 Discovery Channel is set to unhook its 31st year of shark mania. There’s even going to be a feature-length film, Capsized: Blood in the Water

So how can you spend a little time away from the to-do-list to recharge this week? Here’s 5 mind-numbingly “fincredible” ways to celebrate study breaks during Shark Week 2019. LETS GOOOOO!!!

  • Don’t be intimidated, by the large amount of shark content at your fingertips. Dive into the Shark Week schedule and research episodes that fire you up! I got you covered Sharkmaniacs:  Shark Week starts on Sunday, July 28 and continues through Sunday, August 4th on the Discovery Channel. Live streaming can be seen on, the Discovery GO app, Amazon Prime, and Vudu.


8/7c: Expedition Unknown: Megalodon

9/8c: Shark Trip: Eat. Prey. Chum.

11/10c: Shark After Dark


8/7c: Sharks of the Badlands

9/8c: Legend of Deep Blue

10/9c: The Sharks of Headstone Hell

11/10c: Shark After Dark


8/7c: Sharkwrecked: Crash Landing

9/8c: Laws of Jaws: Dangerous Waters

10/9c: Air Jaws Strikes Back

11/10c: Shark After Dark


8/7c: Extinct or Alive: The Lost Shark

9/8c: Capsized: Blood in the Water

11/10c: Shark After Dark


8/7c: Return to Shark Island

9/8c: Great White Kill Zone: Guadalupe

10/9c: Monster Mako: Perfect Predator

11/10c: Shark After Dark


8/7c: Isle of Jaws: Blood Brothers

9/8c: Andrew Mayne: Ghost Diver

10/9c: I Was Prey: Shark Week


9/8c: Sharks Gone Wild 2

10/9c: Shark Week Immersion


Discovery is bringing viewers encores of some the week’s best shows.

  • Ease into Shark Week! Don’t just watch the full-length feature movie. Start off by watching 1 or 2 episodes. For those of you who get a little squeamish watching alpha-predators doing their thing in nature, don’t worry. After all it’s just a fish. A fish that swims as fast as a boat, has lots of teeth, a lower jaw that can push out and well, yeah, I guess if you’re squeamish, maybe just stick to kids Baby Shark videos. My 2-year-old loves singing Baby Shark! Otherwise, pace yourself. After all, it’s only a study break, not spring break. 
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  • Learn as You Go. Not all of us watch Shark Week just to see dominant sea creatures attack their prey without mercy (awesome as that may be). No, no, no my friends. After watching decades of Shark Week episodes I’ve found great respect for this beautiful beast. I try to pass that on to my kids by educating them about Sharks. You can find this great read; Hark a Shark All About Sharks for the littles and more at your local bookstore, or who am I kidding, we probably got it on Amazon.

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  • Feed Your Inner Shark. Don’t forget to satisfy all your cravings by treating yourself to a few “sharkalicous” treats. Shark week is right around my second child’s birthday and the last couple of years he’s asked for a blue Shark cake. I’m not gonna lie, it’s awesome on so many levels! Gotta thank my wife for that!
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  • Don’t Just Watch it, Live It! Take a field trip and get in touch with nature. If you have a somewhat accessible coastal aquarium (and you do if you’re a Willamette University MBA candidate) then head over and see what kind of fun shark exhibits they have. My family and I had a blast at the Oregon Coast Aquarium! 

If you want my shark cake recipe, you’ll have to hit me up at and don’t forget to check out my fun Shark Week promo video above. 

Data Science Certification Information Sessions

Join us for an Info Session (click to RSVP)

Click Here to RSVP

Data Science for Professionals Info Session

Location: Ford Hall, 1140 State Street, Salem, OR: Room 102 (Kremer Board Room)


Wednesday, July 31, 12:00pm-1:00pm
Thursday, August 1, 5:15pm-6:00pm

Why: This is a great opportunity to learn about Willamette University – Atkinson Graduate School of Management’s newest offering — Data Science for Professionals.

Questions? Please contact Will Fruhwirth at


Family/Work/Grad School

Balance Family, Career, and Grad School: Tips for Working Parents

Visit for more stories on how to live your Super Life!

It’s 5am, the alarm on your phone goes off, only it’s not the alarm it’s your 1-year old screaming, and it’s actually only 4am because your 4 and 7-year-old decided to play with the apps on your phone the night before. Awe yes, just another “Manic Monday” only a little different than what the Bangles sang about in the late 80’s.  Hello to all you working professionals with families headed back to grad school. My name is Tony Cassinerio and I’m a father to 3 rambunctious, rascally, but wonderful children, husband to the love of my life, a working professional, and yes, a grad student in pursuit of my MBA.

As if Juggling family, and work wasn’t challenging enough, throw in a little grad school and you got yourself a recipe for disaster, right? Well, maybe not.  I guess I’m a sucker for better pay, more flexibility, and options in the future. For those in similar situations as me, it’s time to gear up and face those challenges head on. I’ve come up with a few tips to help guide you through this new adventure.  

  • Change Your Mindset, & Embrace the grind! It’s not going to be easy, but nothing really worth it is. Try to narrow your focus and keep your eyes on the prize (graduating)! Don’t get hung up on things out of your control.  Like the old saying goes, “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” I mean, wouldn’t it be nice to skip out on homework, or tell the prof when you think you’re ready to take the next test, or even what you want to be tested on. Yeah, wouldn’t that be great, but, alas, no that’s not going to happen. So the next time something pops up at work, home, or school and you feel like complaining about the obstacles preventing you from actually doing what you need to get done, just remember this little saying, “If it has to be, it’s up to me.” No one else wants to take on your workload, take the test for you, or change your 1 year old’s diaper, yuck! Instead, attack each task with the mindset that once you’re done you can move on. Instead of running away from life’s little challenges have fun with them. I like to think my diaper changing skills are second to none, and that each time I change her I’m actually saving a child from drowning in her own, well you know. Take pride in knowing you’ve made accomplishments along the way, and give yourself some credit. The road may be rocky, but that’s what makes it exciting!
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  • Get Organized. Going back to school can be intimidating especially to a working parent. Help yourself out by prioritizing all things important to you before you dive in. Create a list of everything you refuse to give up despite this new demand you’re about to face. Maybe it’s working out, or going on a date with your spouse, or reading to your children. Once you discover your non-negotiables this will help you weed out things you can actually do without. Another helpful tip is to synchronize all your calendars between home, work, school, and your kids. This way you can make the most of your time and plan for those important study sessions, work meetings, and parent teacher conferences. It will also help you start thinking about what your backup plans will be if your kids get sick or (in my case) they decide to flush a stuffed doll too big to fit down the toilet. I mean seriously, can’t even a 2 year old see that the stuffed animal is too big to fit down the toilet.

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  • Find Time to re-energize. I didn’t realize a human being could still function on so little sleep until I had children. Although I take pride in knowing I can function on less sleep than a Navy Seal in sleep deprivation training, it’s still a wise idea to find time to catch some Z’s in short bursts. If you’re one of the lucky parents whose children enjoy taking naps on the weekends, then sleep with them. If not, try finding 10-15-minute slots throughout the day where you can take a quick power nap.  After a long weekend of studying, swim lessons, birthday parties, and all-nighters with the little ones, it’s not uncommon for me to pull in to work on a Monday and take a quick 15min snooze in the parking lot in my car. It will refresh your senses, get you ready for whatever the workday may bring, oh and most importantly, keep you sane
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  • Don’t worry if you’re not perfect. It’s ok to be flawed. We’re all human, and no one has all the answers. Try not to beat yourself up if you can’t get it right all the time. I remember the last big test I had in my accounting class. I studied, I took great notes, and I was actually excited to get after that test. Coincidentally, my son happened to have his parent-teacher meeting on the same night. Let’s just say I didn’t win the parent of the year award in that meeting by being late and pretty much brain dead. But that’s ok, I was there, and I did the best I could. If you’re able to join the PTA, ace the test, and make perfect, timely dinners for the family every night, well then what can I say, you da Best, & keep it up! For the rest of us slackers, take note, you’re not alone. Perfection was never the goal, learning and graduating is what we need to stay focused on. If you make a mistake, turn the page, flush it down, take a step back, and know it’s ok to not be perfect. If everyone was perfect there would be no such thing as bloopers or Americas Funniest Videos. 
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  • Make Your Moments Count- Enjoy the ride because it will be over faster than you think. Get lost in the moment when your children catch their first fish but decide it’s way more interesting to catch salamanders. Smile when your youngest goes swimming for the first time. Your kids will eventually grow up and grow more responsible and even use the bathroom on their own. I’ve seen it, my 7-year-old is a modern miracle worker on the toilet compared to his youngest sibling. This also holds true for school. Graduation is only 2 short years away. Enjoy spending time with your classmates and professors. Once it’s over there’s no going back. Unless you’re a WU grad, then you can always go back for free because we have MBA for Life!

It’s not over yet…

Tony Cassinerio – LinkedIn Facebook 

Welcome to the SuperLife

How does the Willamette MBA help you achieve your Super Life?

Thanks for checking out our video, please reach out with any questions or stories of your own. or visit for more information on how to live your Super Life!

Juliet Valdez – LinkedIn Instagram

It’s about priority setting. Every aspect of your life is important and deserves your attention. I’ve spent time trying to balance work, school, personal and professional growth when really– it’s about prioritizing how much time and effort to allocate to each element of my life. I’ll admit, I am a workaholic. But who isn’t these days? My life revolves around how I can be the best manager for my team and organization. It’s about how I can be the best daughter, sister and friend to my family. It’s being the best version of me. And this is directly connected with how I take care of myself, both physically and mentally. It’s like, the #circleoflife. Taking what I can to improve myself and giving back by influencing and coaching others to be their best. I know when the Super Life is achieved when the people I care for and work with, are the best version of themselves. 

Tony Cassinerio – LinkedIn Facebook

Living the SuperLife to me is all about freedom, family, gratitude and narrowing my focus to accomplish my goals. I want to be the best version of me possible! I hope to consistently seek new ways to improve all aspects of my family, work, and school life. At the same time, I want to remember and reflect upon the past and what’s made me who I am. It would be great to leave a legacy my children would be proud to follow. If someone had to write my eulogy I hope it would go something like this:

–          Dedicated, caring and loving husband and father

–          In one’s darkest hours he could light the fires of hope

–          Always encouraging and ready to listen

–          A rock of support and a true friend when a friend was in need

–          With courage, and matchless eloquence, and human understanding, he inspired us and led us to victory- This one is awesome!!! Robert Menzies on Winston Churchill.

–          After being blessed by the pope in our year of the lord 2040, Tony officially received the title of St. Anthony II, and bequeathed his millions to those he believed would carry on his saintly deeds!

–          He completed his life triumphantly

How does the Willamette MBA fit into my SuperLife? It starts with aiding in my self-improvement goals, and then hopefully opens new opportunities for me that can assist in finding financial freedom. I believe the combination of soft and technical skills learned in the program will give me the leverage I need to stand out not only in the interview process, but throughout my career.

Jose Guerrero – Instagram Facebook Twitter

To live a Super Life means to plan, design, and create a life without compromise. To have it all: family, friends, joy, spiritual fulfillment, and happiness. 

As a first generation American, I understand that the struggle to realize your Super Life is real. Striving to realize your dreams will take work, doesn’t happen overnight or passively. Living your Super Life means identifying what matters to you most and putting a plan in place to execute. Much like an architect sees the breath-taking skyscraper before it is ever erected, we too must “see” our Super Life before we can create it. 

My Super Life entails enjoying my life-long journey of self knowledge, raising my sons to be productive contributors of our world community, and becoming independent from the hours-for-money model of employment. Ultimately, my goal is to learn, contribute, and leave this world slightly better than I found it. 

Joel Hernandez – Instagram LinkedIn

As a second generation Mexican-American living the Super Life means cherishing and taking advantage of the opportunities my parents and grandparents worked so hard to provide for me.  It also means trying to be the best version of myself and recognizing that I am a constant work in progress. What I ultimately want in life is to leave my community in a better state through meaningful work.  I want to contribute to elevating all individuals around me regardless of race, religion, or sexual identity. I want everyone to be able to achieve the same opportunities that I have been so fortunate to have in my short time on this Earth.  Willamette University MBA fits into my vision of the Super Life because the school values diversity. Also, as a working professional, Willamette makes going back to school easy and convenient. From not having to register for classes, to being catered dinner, I am able to focus on integrating what I learn into my everyday work.  In turn, I am able to work towards my Super Life while helping others around me achieve their Super Life.

Travis Ramsby – LinkedIn

Like other members of my team, my idea of living the Super Life is all about making the most out of opportunities (often disguised as obstacles). Personally, I want to create an environment for my children that is open and encourages curiosity. I want to remain curious right along with them and never stop learning and growing, be that personally or professionally. I believe that curiosity and the pursuit of knowledge are the keys to a fulfilled life.

As a student who started another MBA program and moved to Willamette, I can honestly say the Willamette MBA fits my goals like a glove. Not only are the professors top-tier, but as an MBA-P graduate you have access to many classes for the rest of your life, so you never have to stop learnings. There are many other aspects that make the program a great fit (accreditation, catered meals, cohort model, etc) but connect with me to find out how the program will help you reach your Super Life.