Brett Kyle

M.S. in Commerce 2023

What led you to apply to the M.S. in Commerce Program (Biotechnology Track), and how did you envision it helping you to achieve your goals? What were your interests coming into McIntire, and how did the program support them?

I applied to the M.S. in Commerce Program because I wanted to expand my knowledge of business processes and grow my professional network. I came from a science background, so I wanted to gain the skills and knowledge needed to find new and exciting career opportunities in the biotechnology field.

Given your undergrad major, what have you found to be most challenging about studying business topics? What tactics and resources have you used to get the most from your business-related courses?

Adjusting to the heavy focus on class discussion and participation was the hardest aspect of the program for me. Coming from a science background, almost all of my classes were lecture-based, with very little classroom discussion. However, every class at McIntire incorporates discussion and participation. I found the best way to adjust and succeed in this new learning environment was to visit professors during office hours and to frequently speak in class.

In what ways has your background contributed to the educational experience of your peers—and how have their diverse perspectives informed what you’re learning?

The diverse perspectives of the program have unquestionably enhanced my time and education in the program. The diversity of concepts and ideas comes from students from a wide variety of majors, schools, and work experiences. Exposure to these ideas challenges the program’s students to reflect on their own ideas and to generate new ones.

What project or assignment has been the most rewarding for you thus far and why?

The business simulation was the most rewarding project I have worked on to date. Being able to make business decisions and understand the outcomes and consequences of those decisions provided a glimpse into the real business world. This project also taught me about teamwork and flexibility. Working in a team can often be very challenging, but the project certainly taught me how to work with others effectively and successfully.

What have been the most surprising aspects of your Biotech courses?

The aspect of the Biotechnology Track that surprised me the most was the diversity of the biotech industry. Before starting the program, I typically thought of pharmaceuticals when considering the biotech industry. However, through my courses and other opportunities from the program, I realized the industry has many more aspects–like diagnostics, services, and devices. I also was surprised at the many different positions and skills required to run a successful biotechnology company. I think exploring these companies and business roles helped me the most in determining my current career path.

What do you enjoy most about being in Charlottesville? How has it enhanced your time at UVA and McIntire?

The people and the atmosphere surrounding Charlottesville are some of the more rewarding and enriching parts of the program. Charlottesville is a beautiful city, and the friends I have made in the program have had a positive influence on my learning and personal growth.

How do you envision your experience in the program helping you with your career plans upon graduation?

I believe the program will help my career by providing an excellent business foundation for me to build my career. I know the skills and experiences provided by the program will give me a competitive edge when applying for jobs. In the long term, I think the connections and networks I have developed during the program will provide exciting opportunities for me in the future.

  • Undergraduate Degree Biology
  • Undergraduate Institution Wake Forest University
  • Hometown Fort Myers, FL
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