MBA Candidate Connie Mattox still remembers the very first admissions conversation she had with Senior Associate Dean Richard Coughlan. 

“I met with Dean Coughlan in my MBA admissions search and went over what I was looking for in an MBA program, and everything he told me about Richmond just seemed to match,” she recalled.

“I was looking for great theories of business. I felt like I had some really good practical experience through my four years of working, but was trying to my practical experience with business theory.  I felt like The Richmond MBA was very strong in that sense.”

While matriculating through The Richmond MBA program, Mattox has achieved several significant milestones.  One of which was co-founding of the MBA Women’s Association.  “I think that by far, one of my favorite memories of The Richmond MBA program was being one of the three co-founders of that association. Our first event was a phenomenal roundtable discussion about work-life balance with students, MBA Alumni and women professionals in the area,” she said.

Since then, the MBA Women’s Association has continued to grow, and Mattox has enjoyed keeping in touch with the program.

A more recent accomplishment happened in January of this year when she was named CEO of Brooks Adams Research.  Mattox, whose background is in marketing research, credits the MBA program with opening up doors for her professionally.

“I know that I couldn’t have the job that I have today without The Richmond MBA program, and I credit every single professor and every single student that I worked with, in helping me get the job that I have today,” she said. 

Although the field of market research is not new to Mattox, the way she approaches her position is a result of what she learned in her three years in The Richmond MBA program. 

“The Richmond MBA has helped me to make those decisions about operating a business that I didn’t have just as a market researcher.”    

Mattox learned a lot about how to run a business through the MBA courses and her professors, but her peers shaped her learning experience in the program as well, something Coughlan predicted in that very first admissions conversation.

“When I first met with Dean Coughlan, he told me I was going to learn so much from my classmates and I was going to make a lot of great friends,” she remembered.

Mattox expected to learn a lot from her classmates but did not pursue the MBA program with the intention of making lifelong connections and friends. 

“I really was in it just to learn and get my degree,” she said. “What surprised me was Dean Coughlan was completely right.  One of the things I’ll miss most is seeing my friends multiple times a week and working with them on projects.  The other students in the MBA program are diverse, accomplished and they work well together.”

Looking back on the MBA program, her professional successes and reflecting on her peers’ influence, Mattox passed along advice she was given just before she began the program.

“The best advice that I received before I came to the MBA program was from a MBA alum who I had worked with, and she told me, ‘you get what you give.’  At the time I wasn’t actually sure what she meant by that, but I definitely think that was phenomenal advice, particularly for this program.”

“The Richmond MBA offers so much, and the more you put yourself into the program, the more you will get out of it.   I have no regrets about all of the late nights, the weekends, the extra classes, and extra effort that I put into the program. I gained so much out of this experience that I couldn’t have at any other school.”