Name: Janine Guerra, JD, MBA
Title: Associate Director, Professional MBA Program
Company: Saint Joseph’s University
Q: What is your role at Saint Joseph’s University?
A: As the Associate Director of the Professional and Online MBA Programs, I handle much of the admissions process for students from marketing and recruitment all the way through to enrollment. I am also the primary academic advisor for students in the program.
Q: What is one unexpected thing that has happened to you in your career that has led to a positive change?
A: Probably the most unexpected thing to happen to me in my career is that I decided not to practice law and instead go into higher education. I thought all through law school and while studying for the bar exam that I was going to practice family law, but when the time came to actually do it, I just didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. I had already gotten my MBA and really enjoyed marketing, so I took a job recruiting for my law school and loved it. I was very lucky that a similar position opened up a few months later at Saint Joseph’s, my undergraduate and MBA alma mater, when it did! I’ve been here now in various roles for over four years.
Q: When friends or colleagues come to the Philadelphia area to live or visit, what places, foods or entertainment do you recommend?
A: I always have some go-to places when I have friends from out of town come to visit. My number one stop is always the Reading Terminal Market. Until you’ve been there, you just don’t understand how amazing it really is. Of course I always take people sightseeing to all of the historic sites, but no one is ever allowed to leave Philly without first having a cheesesteak or going to a Wawa.
Q: Wiz “wit” or “wit-out”
A: I actually don’t like onions, so I definitely prefer my cheesesteaks “wit-out.” I also like American cheese over whiz. My perfect cheesesteak will also have long hots! There’s a great little place in Northeast Philly called “Wit or Witout” that makes the best cheesesteaks, just the way I like them!
Q: If you could impart advice to young professionals looking to start a career in Philadelphia (or Saint Joseph’s University) what would you tell them?
A: NETWORK! This is the most important thing that professional looking to start or evolve their careers could possibly do.
Q: What is your YPN experience?
A: I’ve been a member of YPN for about four years now since Saint Joseph’s is a sponsor of the organization. I attend many of the monthly networking events and also organize the annual networking event held on our City Line Avenue campus. (This year we are hosting Mayor Michael Nutter on March 12 at 6:00 PM.)
Q: How has YPN affected you as a professional?
A: Believe it or not, I’m generally a pretty shy person. My involvement with YPN has helped me overcome this by allowing me to practice my networking skills and make some friends along the way. Professionally, it’s also provided some great contact with prospective MBA students who are looking to take that next step and earn a graduate degree to advance their careers.
Q: What do you like most about what YPN has to offer?
A: I like the networking aspects of YPN the best. As I’ve mentioned, networking is extremely important in today’s business environment. Unfortunately, it’s not something that people are inherently comfortable with, and it’s definitely an acquired skill for most. Groups like YPN can help young professionals hone their networking skills and create connections that can benefit them later on.