“To this day when I meet new people I tell them that EMTM is a significant reason why I have been successful. The knowledge I gained in a brief two-year period has opened many doors for me and I expect it will continue to do so in the future.”
Scott Parsons, EMTM’97
Program Manager, Government Systems
Accenture National Security Services
King of Prussia, PA
Scott Parsons, EMTM’97
After Scott graduated from Purdue University with a degree in computer science, he entered the Air Force on active duty and spent a decade flying cargo aircraft. When it came time to leave the military, he found that his skills were not necessarily transferable to the commercial sector. Though he had developed extensive leadership experience in the Air Force, his decade-old degree in computer science was dated. In order to position himself for continued work in the technology area he would need to go back to school. “I was at a point where I needed to get some type of refresher a degree that would serve as a bridge from military to civilian life.”
Scott was stationed at McGuire Air Force Base in central New Jersey when he began his search for graduate programs within a reasonable commuting distance from his home. When he learned about UPenn EMTM, however, he was sold on the dual focus on technology and management, which seemed to dovetail perfectly with his experience and goals. “Honestly, if I hadn’t gotten into Penn I would have sought out another active duty assignment and stayed in the military.” Scott enrolled in the EMTM program fulltime and paid for his own education. “In my research of the program, I appreciated the benefits it brought to other individuals which helped me solidify my decision. It was not a trivial commitment by any means, but it was absolutely worth the investment.”
At EMTM, Scott developed a new appreciation for marketing and about the importance of communicating the benefits of new technologies. “In the military we often don’t need to present a business case we don’t need to understand client needs or marketing. In the private sector, there’s a whole lot more to building a technology than just the engineering skills. EMTM gave me the ability to understand and apply business concepts to technology products in the commercial marketplace.” These lessons, he says, have become second nature to him over the years.
Scott stayed in the military through the program and left during the fall following graduation after completing his service commitments. As he’d hoped, Scott was fully prepared to make his next career move. A contact he made through the EMTM network helped him find a position at SEI Investments in Oaks, PA, where he worked as technology Product Manager for five years. Another EMTM connection later recruited him to a small startup professional IT services firm doing work for the Department of Defense. That company was later acquired by Accenture. Today, he works as a Program Manager developing customized software capabilities used in the command and control space.
“Without EMTM I would have come into the job market at a much lower level. A key benefit of EMTM is the wealth of tools and relationships that helped me lead a technology program within a startup company through acquisition and into the much larger organization of Accenture.”
Scott has found that his investment in EMTM not only prepared him for his post-military life, but it continues to return dividends. “To this day when I meet new people I tell them that EMTM is a significant reason why I have been successful. The knowledge I gained in a brief two-year period has opened many doors for me and I expect it will continue to do so in the future.”