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Ilanna Hinson

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Ilanna Hinson

Fort Myers, FL

Academic School



New York

What are your career goals / academic goals?

My career goal has always been to receive my School District Business Leadership certificate, to become an Assistant Superintendent for Business in a public school system. I’ve also always wanted to become a college professor and assist others on their educational journey. 

Why did you choose to pursue your graduate degree at Marist? Why did you choose to pursue this degree program?

I grew up across the river in New Paltz, Marist was always a campus that I loved. I chose Marist because I loved the emphasis on teamwork that the program had. With classes having us work together in teams to accomplish projects.

Tell us about a project or course that was particularly meaningful to your professional development:

Climbing Everest in Dr. Ken Sloan’s 21st Century Manager course. My very first course in the program, and we all had to work together in a group to reach summit. Every member of the group had a different role, and together we had to work together while also ensuring we reached our own individual goals for the mission. We all had to learn how to communicate with each other about not only our class but our own individual lives. We would take breaks on WebEx when someone had to put their kids to sleep or was on call in a hospital. It was a true learning experience into how we can all work together. 

Tell us about a meaningful experience you had at Marist as it pertains to your degree:

While at Marist, I created lifelong friendships with classmates, and also developed relationships with not only the program but the professors. I was invited by Jay Pantaleo, the program director to sit on a Student Advisory Board. To assist Marist in ensuring that they had meaningful programs, events, and services for their MBA students. Ensuring other students have the ability to see and be a part of a program that I grew to love. A program that I truly believe improved my life, academic career, and my future professional development. 

What advice would you give to a student considering pursuing this degree at Marist?

My advice to a student considering joining Marist is to really be apart of the community and take advantage of all the college has to offer. Your professors and TA’s all want you to be successful, and help is always there should you ever need it. Become friendly with your classmates, as you continue through the program. You may see them again in the next course, or even in the workforce one day. Marist also has an incredible career services department that will assist you in any professional development direction you go!

Marist College allowed me the flexibility to work full time and finish my MBA in two years. The academic skills that I learned from Marist have transferred into professional development skills that have allowed me to push my career forward. My MBA was a vital stepping stone that allowed me to pursue my SDBL license from NYS Education Department.