First-Person

Bengt Baron

James Bender
MBA 10

Senior Product Manager
A2z Research and Development
Orange County, California

Meet Me on LinkedIn

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James Bender is no stranger to leadership. As a carrier naval aviator, he had the lives and safety of 85 people in his hands. He shared that leadership experience with his classmates, and in return, they helped him learn to look at problems from a profit-and-loss perspective.

"I interned with a major tech company [Cisco] and was staffed on electrical Smart Grid strategy — a complete opposite direction than what I had anticipated. The work was challenging yet rewarding. I provided the bulk of the research and analysis and was given an enormous amount of responsibility. I thoroughly enjoyed the conclusion and am excited to see the results of my work in the daily news as the company executes its Smart Grid strategy."

"There were just so many very intelligent people at Haas who were very accomplished. I was amazed daily at how students tackled difficult problems in class, case competitions, or daily life. There was an air of willingness to help that was unlike anything I had experienced. I think amazing minds coupled with the willingness to lend a hand sets Haas apart. These are without question the defining Haas characteristics that enables Haas grads to empower employers."

"We had a couple of goals in starting up the Haas Veterans Club. First was to give vets — from other countries as well as the US — a visible presence on campus. The second was to reach out to the broader military network, which is incredibly strong, and establish the Haas brand."

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