We asked current Foster students to tell us why they chose Foster, explain how they balance life with school, and to share advice with potential applicants. First up, meet Master of Science in Information Systems student Kimberley Campbell.
1) Where are you from?
I am originally from Toronto, Ontario Canada. I was born there and moved to Seattle when I was 14.
2) Are you currently working? If so, what is your job title?
Yes, I am currently working at Nordstrom as a business analyst in the Risk Management department.
3) What attracted you to Foster and the MSIS program?
I did the undergraduate program at Foster, and my attraction to the MSIS program was due to my boyfriend telling me about it and professors mentioning it over my time as an undergraduate student. But what originally attracted me to Foster was that it is the best business school in the state, in fact its one of the best in many states. I love the environment. I loved going to the campus before I was accepted into the school and feeling the atmosphere of people studying. I would purposefully go to the school to talk with advisers about admission and then just sit in the buildings and study. It’s the cheesiest thing to say but it really did feel like a place I could call home, where I felt like my education was taken seriously, and my dreams could be achieved with all the resources and help Foster provided.
Besides those initial reasons I found the school has great roots in Seattle. Being in the business/tech industry, it was a good idea to invest in a school located around a city with so much potential. I also love the campus. The advisers are all very kind and the teachers are great. Overall, Foster was my one and only choice for a business school.
4) What skills and/or knowledge are you looking to develop?
I am looking to develop my knowledge in security. It’s such a huge field right now and not many companies are highly invested in at the moment. That also makes it a huge threat to businesses. I am also looking into data analytics, which is partially what I do at my work currently.
5) What kind of connections have you made with your classmates/larger business community while in the program?
I have gotten to know my group members and have had conversations with the majority of my class mates. I also have been given a mentor in cyber security whom I have yet to meet with but plan to within the next few weeks. And I’ve been exposed to my classmates who have lived and worked in many different countries and companies and who have a knowledge of areas of business/tech that I have never had the experience in. It’s been great, and as the year progresses I’m sure I will find more connections.
6) What do you think about the information systems field in Seattle?
Seattle is one of the tech-iest cities in the country. It definitely does help to be in a tech field as well! You can do so many things with this degree, it all depends on what you have a major interest in. Like myself, I didn’t really know that I loved cyber security until I took a programming class. And I didn’t enjoy data analytics until I took a data mining class. There are fields of technology always developing, and having an IS major in the tech field puts you at the front of it all, that’s SO exciting! You can learn it all as it happens, or you can specialize in one area. It all depends on what you want from the degree.
7) What kind of impact would you like to have on the information systems field?
I’d like to eventually end up in data security/ cyber security. It would be great to learn about the dangers and protections in place of how we store, dispose of, transfer, send, receive…etc. all forms of data. My impact in the field would be to provide data security for a company.
8) How do you balance school with other life priorities?
School has and always will be my priority, despite anything else going on in my life. But I keep a very strict schedule. I have a physical agenda which I write everything into, and I’m getting more into Google calendar as well, which is synced with my outlook calendar for work. I’m able to see all my events this way, and I can schedule my workouts and social things around my calendars. During school, my social life is put on hold, since school and work are my priorities. I also manage to get a workout in 5 days a week which also takes up my time. Any left over time is usually dedicated to either homework, and if that’s done I give myself a break.
9) What do you like to do for fun?
Hmmm for fun. Well I love being outside so in the winters I’m usually in the mountains boarding or skiing, and during the summers I’m usually swimming or going on hikes. I workout 5 days a week and weight life. Working on my fitness has been a great and fun thing for me throughout my school time and during breaks. And other then that I enjoy reading and hanging out with my boyfriend and dog.
10) What’s been your favorite part of the program so far?
My favourite part so far has been hanging out with my team. Everyone comes from a different background, we’re all different ages, have worked at different companies, lived in different countries, speak different languages, and have different perspectives. Being with my team, working through hard things with them, being there for support, and being given support by them has been the highlight of the program so far. Close behind that is when I got to ride Shaosong’s Hoverboard. 🙂
11) What advice would you give to someone who’s thinking about applying to Foster’s MSIS program?
I’d say just do it, because why not? And I can almost guarantee you won’t have an answer for the question “why not?”.
Learn more about Foster’s Master of Science in Information Systems program
This post is the first part in a series where we ask current students to answer 11 questions about their experience at Foster. Stay tuned for more interviews in the coming weeks!