Graduate Spotlight: Roy Gordon ’09

Roy_webthumbnail_circleMeet Roy! A 2009 graduate from the University of Maryland University College (UMUC) Business Administration program. Roy is an IT Program Manager at the United States Postal Service headquarters in Washington, D.C. Learn about his experiences at USG and see what he is up to now.

Starting from when you began your program at USG, what steps did you take to get to where you are today in your career?

My first step was to find the right degree program that would provide a balance with my professional and family life. As a father of two children and having a full-time work schedule, I found that UMUC provided the best opportunity to pursue my degree as a part-time student. I liked the fact that I could choose to go to school online, or attend classes on the conveniently located USG campus. My son and daughter (in high school at the time) often shared my study schedule. We spent time together on evenings and weekends at the kitchen table all doing our homework.

My next step was to focus on academic excellence. I took advantage of the USG campus resources, like the library, and the group study spaces — all of which really helped me excel in my studies. I’m happy my hard work paid off and I was able to graduate with a degree in Business and a minor in Marketing – Magna Cum Laude.

My last step was to leverage my professional experience with my academics. Whenever possible, I tried to use “real-life” business challenges in my research and studies. Now I can apply these situations in my current position as an IT Program Manager for the United States Post Service (USPS).

What do you do at your current job?

I am an IT Program Manager for the United States Postal Service. I manage Marketing department portfolio systems and overall portfolio financial management. This activity is done to maintain the operational readiness (system available and operating properly) for approximately 50 IT legacy systems including some you may recognize like USPS.com.

My responsibilities also include project management oversight of the design, development and release of major (national in scope) software updates across many department portfolio systems like Retail and Engineering. This is done to make sure that our Postal customer’s cost and experience for purchasing products and services is reliable, correct, and consistent across all channels like Retail, Self- Service, and Online.

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A typical day starts with a planned schedule but rarely ends that way. As issues arise my schedule is adjusted depending on the nature of the issue. Issues can range from critical, if a revenue generating system in not operating correctly, or an issue may be time-sensitive, if a response to senior management is needed on a major topic.

How did your time at USG prepare you for your career?

My time at USG prepared me in multiple ways for my career. Through class projects I learned how to collaborate effectively with other team members. I was able to hone my writing skills with the dozens of papers I had to write. My marketing courses helped me better understand my customer’s (USPS Marketing) goals and objectives. And lastly, my interaction with my fellow students provided me with invaluable insight on consumer expectations of online services.

What was your most memorable experience at USG?

My most memorable experience at USG was my first day on campus. As I walked into the building where my class was held, I was in disbelief on how modern, comfortable and clean the classrooms were. I had gone from attending evening classes at College Park in the basement of the Mathematics building to a contemporary classroom setting equipped with the latest technology. If you have ever spent evenings in the basement of the Mathematics building at College Park you would understand my amazement! I continued to be in awe of all the amazing things USG had to offer, the library, the study rooms and the computer labs.

In 140 characters or less, what message would you give to future graduates?

Your time at USG is unique. Enjoy the journey & never stop learning. Lifelong learning is an integral part of building a successful career.

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