Penn State Abington alumnus Daniel Murray, senior vice president of finance, strategy and mergers and acquisitions for Comcast Interactive Media, was on campus last month relaying real-life business stories and career advice to assistant professor Shruti Gupta's senior level global marketing class.
Having traveled the world and lived abroad as an expatriate during his business career -- which included stints with Westinghouse, Quaker Oats, Yahoo, Fandango and currently Comcast Interactive Media -- Murray's visit with Gupta's global marketing class was a chance for students to see the career potential of their business education.
Murray told of "walking down similar paths" as today's students at Penn State Abington. Murray, who had to work part-time to pay for his education, believes the years he spent at Penn State Abington were extremely beneficial to his overall education.
"I believe the future for someone who has come from Penn State Abington is as bright if not brighter than when I was there because of how progressive the school is with its technology capabilities and strong faculty. It was a great foundation for me," he said.
Murray continued with stories of real-world working experience, telling of the benefits of working at larger companies and then applying those acquired skills when working for smaller companies.
"I spent time getting my foundational skills at large companies. I learned a lot of the basics at the large companies and then when you go to these medium and start-up companies, suddenly you realize, 'wow, what I learned at Penn State and what I learned through my experiences at these large companies, I can apply!'"
Continuing education was a recurring theme throughout Murray's lecture, in relation to not only class work -- Murray received his master of business administration from Kellogg Graduate School of Business -- but also within the job.
"Your education does not end when you graduate. It keeps coming," he said. "You want to find a job where you continue to be intellectually stimulated and grow because once you plateau in terms of intellectual growth, work stops being fun and you become potentially less valuable."
Murray also highly recommended the international experience of being an expatriate.
"I hope everyone in here has the chance to be an expatriate someday. It will be one of the best things you can do for your career. It's going to broaden your horizons tremendously; challenge you in ways you never expected. The future is a global world. You have to understand how life is outside the U.S. It may be the most important move of your career. It was for mine."
"When you graduate (from Penn State) you can compete on equal footing with anybody out there," he told the class. "You have the foundation, and then it's up to you."