Justin McDonald is an incoming MBA student at D’Amore McKim School of Business at Northeastern University. Justin was born and raised in Michigan but later attended Lehigh University in Pennsylvania where he majored in Marketing. He began his career in the retail landscape by joining the TJX Companies, Inc, a leading off-price retailer, upon graduation. Justin joined TJX through their industry leading Merchandising Development Program, helping to drive profitable sales for key business classes using strategic distribution strategies. More recently, Justin has been a part of the Data & Analytics team at Valassis, Inc., an advertising industry leader, using numerous data sets to aid clients in optimizing their marketing campaigns for maximum effectiveness and reaching new consumers. Justin has enjoyed being involved in LGBT and Diversity enrichment focused organizations throughout his undergraduate and business career. In his personal life, Justin is an avid runner and hiker. He also enjoys traveling and immersing himself in foreign culture and language.
What made you consider business school?
I wanted a way to fuse together my past experiences in data & analytics and my interests in technology and the healthcare industry into a fulfilling and rewarding future career in an innovative environment. Future technology is pushing for business and individuals to become increasingly innovative and I'm eager to pursue my MBA to help businesses and other individuals not only adapt to this new landscape, but to thrive.
What are you most excited about in terms of your time in business school?
I'm most excited to network, meet and learn from future business professionals from all different backgrounds and continuously challenge myself in a new academic environment. I'm also eager to be a part of ROMBA and to be able to network with other LGBTQ students who face similar concerns in the business landscape, but who are also eager and optimistic for the future opportunities that this landscape holds for LGBTQ individuals.
Who are some leaders (in the LGBT community, in business, or in society) that most inspire you?
Someone within the LGBTQ community that has always inspired me is Ellen DeGeneres. She came out in a very visible way, in 1997, a time when it was still quite a challenge to be LGBTQ, especially in the public eye. Throughout the years she has not only been an exemplary role model of love and kindness, but also a comedic teacher in how we should all just "be kind to one another," and she continues to show the enormous difference that makes in the world every day.
What's one thing everyone should know about you?
I have a deep passion for travel, and immersing myself in other cultures and languages. I believe travel is one of the most important investments you can make in yourself, since it forces you to expand your mindset and open your eyes to new ideas and lifestyles you may never otherwise experience.