Tasha Friend

Tasha Friend, ’14, MBA, has the confidence to thrive in new situations.

“I have mastered the ability to adapt to change, to different leadership styles, and to many different circumstances,” Tasha said. “There aren’t many experiences I can’t handle or don’t feel confident in.”

Much of Tasha’s fearlessness and adaptability come from serving eight years in the Air Force and being stationed in Japan for three years. Her increased confidence is a direct result of her Meredith MBA – a program she initially chose for its flexibility.

“It’s important to me to maintain a work-life balance. While managing a career and family, I needed to pursue an MBA as a part-time student. Meredith gave me the flexibility to do that, and provided the network of support and encouragement that helped me along the way,” she said.

With that support and encouragement – and her increased knowledge – Tasha found herself becoming more confident as a professional.

“I have more insight and confidence as a result of my experience at Meredith,” Tasha said. “Each course definitely had an impact on building knowledge and exposure within the specific subject area, but it was Strategy that really tied it all together for me.”

Integrated Strategic Management, or Strategy, is the culminating course for all Meredith MBA students. Taught by Associate Professor of Business Stephanie Hurt, the course uses case studies and a business simulation to build students’ executive-level policy setting and decision-making skills.

“Dr. Hurt’s feedback was helpful to me, and each week I was able to course correct wherever needed, and to learn and grow. In the end, I had adapted to the rigor and mental challenges of the course, and was sad it had to end. Dr. Hurt’s final feedback helped me feel like I truly succeeded,” Tasha said.

Tasha now works as senior business systems analyst at Red Hat, where she manages global support for the company’s human resource applications. She plans to use the knowledge she gained through the Meredith MBA program to continue advancing her career at Red Hat.

“The MBA program has helped me build on the foundation of my professional experience by applying a global, more holistic perspective,” she said. Her experience studying abroad in China made an immediate impact to her at work.

“In China, we saw several examples of how jobs were created to leverage the abundance of human capital resources. In the U.S., we are focused on automation and efficiency. This experience helped solidify the importance of scalable solutions. I employ practices of efficiencies, limiting manual processes, and driving scalability in the business processes I support.”

She would advise anyone considering an advanced degree to “go for it!”

​“Not only is it worth it, it is one of the greatest accomplishments you can achieve. When I say accomplishment, I’m not speaking to the MBA title, I mean the experience and opportunity of the program,” she said. “Each course was an opportunity to succeed, and at the end of the journey, a significant accomplishment. Completing the journey made me stronger.”