Skip to main content

Executive MBA Student Spotlights

Add Business Leadership Skills to Technical Expertise

Mary Erpenbach

Mary Erpenbach

University of Wisconsin‑Madison, Wisconsin School of Business
MBA Graduation Year: 2018
Current Job: Senior Tech – Project Management, AT&T

Mary Erpenbach has built an accomplished career at AT&T and currently manages a 22-state territory for the telecommunications giant’s Ethernet services. As AT&T spreads globally, Mary looks to adapt, grow, and strengthen her leadership abilities. At Wisconsin, she’s learning from faculty experts and peer executives, adding new skills, and improving her communications.

I’m enhancing my leadership skills to advance to a more senior role, and everything I’m learning at Wisconsin is preparing me for this next step. Being on the technical side of business, I wasn’t sure what type of education I needed to move forward as a manager. Having had the opportunity to watch my husband complete the Wisconsin Executive MBA Program, I knew that the program would be right for me.

I’m gaining a deeper understanding of management. I’m learning how to lead a team on a day-to-day basis as well as the overall leadership structures needed for a global company. My organization is expanding more and more into global markets and my MBA is giving me the tools to better contribute as we make this move.

Wisconsin’s program is made up of students from tech, engineering, and medical backgrounds. Each student brings a unique perspective and we are able to learn from one another and rely on each other’s expertise. The faculty are excellent at facilitating discussion, and the students are great at bringing their own insights to the table and helping the class look at topics from multiple angles.

Within the Wisconsin Executive MBA Program, relationships naturally develop due to the program’s cohort approach. People from all industries and backgrounds come together to create a lasting network. You work together on group projects during the program and graduate with a set of friends and colleagues that will continue to support you throughout your career.

I joined the Wisconsin Executive MBA Program to gain skills to advance in my career. I’m finding that sharing my knowledge with my cohort is equally valuable. Helping others is a natural part of Wisconsin’s collaborative program.

Through the program, I’ve added presenting to my arsenal of skills. Presenting is something I have never had to do in any of my positions. Because I’m looking to transition into a more senior executive role, this skill is essential.

I’ve also worked on personal branding for the first time. The program office offers significant career management services and provides coaching on this area. The résumé-building and LinkedIn courses were critical as I consider how to update my résumé and profile for my next career step.