MPAc Program Is Now STEM Designated

We are excited to announce that our Master of Professional Accountancy (MPAc) degree has been recognized as a STEM designated field of study beginning this fall. Students who complete the MPAc degree will now have the opportunity to qualify for an additional two-year STEM extension of their post-completion OPT work permission. The Rady School MPAc degree is now one of only 24% of specialized masters programs in the U.S. to earn STEM designation. Our Master of Science in Business Analytics and Master of Finance are also STEM designated programs.

The MPAc program is the Rady School’s newest graduate degree. This program was created with the guidance of world-class faculty to address the evolving educational needs of the accounting industry. With a focus on a personalized career plan and accessible, supportive faculty, the MPAc program at the Rady School is designed to prepare you for an accelerated career in accounting.

Further information about eligibility and requirements for the STEM OPT extension is available on the Department of Homeland Security website and through the International Students & Programs Office at UC San Diego.

July 8, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Rady School Recognized as a ‘Top Veteran-Friendly School’

We are proud to share that the Rady School is recognized as a Top-Veteran School by U.S. Veterans magazine. The list of schools was compiled from market research, independent research, diversity conference participation and survey responses.

Earlier this month, the Rady School also announced a new partnership with San Diego Military Advisory Council. We will provide research support for the annual Military Economic Impact Report (MEIR), for which associate professor Sally Sadoff will lead a data analysis, supported by a group of Rady School MBA students. The MEIR is an independent annual study to comprehensively quantify the impact of defense-related expenditures on the San Diego region’s economy.

The Rady School is proud to offer benefits to our Veterans, including:

  • We will waive the application fee current and former members of the military applying to any Rady MBA program. Please contact Graduate Admissions to receive the application fee waiver before submitting your application. 
  • In the Spring and Fall, we offer complimentary GMAT Prep courses to eligible military veterans or active duty personnel.
  • As part of the Yellow Ribbon Program, we partner with the Veteran’s Administration to fund tuition and fee expenses that exceed the tuition and fee amounts payable under the Post-9/11 GI Bill.
  • Our StartR Veteran program is a commitment to provide Veterans with entrepreneurial programs, resulting in greater confidence and increased skills as they transition into the civilian world. The program utilizes a “Veterans helping Veterans” approach, providing participants with inspiration, support and mentoring throughout the 10 session program. 
  • The Rady School’s small size means that our career management center can provide individualized attention as you assess your strengths and explore the career path that is right for you.

Hear from Rady Veteran alumni about their experience:

“Being accepted to Rady was a life-changing experience and really solidified the transition plan I had from the Military to the civilian world.” – Robert Sweetman II (MBA ’19)

“Being a former counterintelligence agent, I’m very inquisitive. I’m always asking questions and I always want to understand what makes things work and why. When I was able to see the touchpoints that the Rady program has relative towards healthcare, technology, broader sciences and business, [it was clear that] they don’t just you these individual disciplines. They teach you how to blend them all together in order to actually make it function. That’s what the Rady experience was for me. That was the most valuable thing they gave me: to take a dream and turn it into reality.” – Clay Treska (MBA ’19)

June 23, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest

Teigan MacDonald was working on her application to the Rady School’s full-time MBA program while sitting in a hotel hallway in Fall 2018. She had traveled to Marietta, GA, to compete with her rugby club, the San Diego Surfers, in the Women’s Premier League National Championship. Teigan scored the first try of the match (like football’s touchdown) and the Surfers defeated the Glendale Merlins 34-28. That championship marked the second of three in Teigan’s rugby career, and the beginning of her new career. 

Born and raised in Modesto, CA, Teigan earned a B.S. in biology and minor in economics from UC San Diego. When she began her undergraduate studies, she thought she might like to work in a bioengineering lab. “I took my first lab class and I absolutely hated it,” she says. “I hated not having windows and not being able to talk to people. It’s a very individualized experience.” Having spent most of her life playing–and thriving–in team sports, Teigan realized that the lab environment wasn’t for her. 

Inspired by family members who’d studied economics, Teigan began taking coursework that blended her interests, such as economics of the environment and economics of healthcare. “I loved that you could take a class [on these subjects] and apply business concepts to them,” says Teigan. She’d found her niche. Before she graduated, Teigan’s dad, a stock broker, recommended that she take a personal finance class, one of the Rady School’s undergraduate offerings. 

“I remember walking into Wells Fargo Hall and thinking, ‘Why have I not been here the whole time?’” Teigan says. “‘Whatever I need to do, I want to [study] here.” she says. “I was able to meet Joe Pecore, a great instructor. I went to his office hours and he really helped me figure out what I wanted to do and why I should go get an MBA.”

Teigan began the full-time MBA program in Fall 2019. “What I’ve enjoyed the most so far about is the holistic experience I’m getting at a graduate school,” she says. “My undergraduate experience at UC San Diego was great, but I didn’t really have career networking or resume workshops. I wasn’t really close with my classmates because I was in classes with 300 students. When I came to Rady, I thought, ‘Wow, this is more than just going to school. This is building a career.” 

This summer, Teigan begins a new role in sales support at ACADIA pharmaceuticals, where she works part-time as a commercial operations analyst. She says that working closely with Rady career advisor Stephanie Sindt earlier this year helped prepare her for a new challenge. “We had internship meetups every week before COVID. It was a great way to crowdsource and work as a group and get Steaphine’s expertise. We would prepare for interviews and work on our cover letters and resumes.”

Ultimately, Teigan says that her dream job is managing sales teams for a biotech or pharmaceutical company. It’s a role that combines the competitiveness she’s fostered throughout her life in sports, the knowledge she’s gaining in her courses, and the collaboration and experience she receives among her peers. 

“People forget that you try to interact with people just like you. This program encourages you to work with different people and learn how other people operate and work,” she says. 

Teigan says that her favorite Rady experiences so far include her fall marketing class, the career treks organized by the Life Sciences Club to San Diego companies such as Thermo Fisher Scientific and ResMed, and conversations before and after class with her fellow students. Despite the current challenges and activities on hold–including rugby–due to the pandemic, Teigan remains optimistic about her future. 

“When I land an interview or get a chance to talk to a company I’m interested in, I feel like I’ve scored a try, because it’s just one step closer to my goal.”

June 18, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Rady School Partners with SDMAC for Military Economic Impact Report & Webinar

The Rady School has partnered with the San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC) to provide research support for SDMAC’s Military Economic Impact Report (MEIR). The MEIR is an independent annual study to comprehensively quantify the impact of defense-related expenditures on the San Diego region’s economy.

“The Rady School is the premier business school in the region with faculty recognized for their research,” said Mark Balmert, SDMAC Executive Director. “We are honored to partner with the Rady School on this important project. The school and Dean Ordóñez have been incredibly supportive and we look forward to continuing this collaborative and strategic partnership.”

On June 18, Dean Ordóñez and UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla are featured guests on an SDMAC webinar. This webinar will discuss the role of the coronavirus pandemic’s effect on UC San Diego and active duty and veteran students.

Dean Lisa Ordóñez
Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla

Register here for webinar.  

“At the Rady School, we are committed to our active duty service members and veterans,” said Rady School Dean Lisa Ordóñez. “Our partnership with SDMAC for the MEIR study will deliver a vital, independent look at the military’s impact on our local economy. Our faculty and student analysis of the SDMAC data provides clarity to local, state, and national elected officials who use the report to demonstrate the importance of the military on our region.”

Associate Professor
Sally Sadoff

Sally Sadoff, an associate professor of economics and strategic management, will lead the analysis of the data provided by SDMAC, supported by a group of Rady School MBA students. The report will examine the economic impact of San Diego’s military cluster on jobs, income, direct spending, supply chain, and consumption. The report will also provide analysis of military personnel counts and wages and benefits for military branches, reserves, retirees, and the VA.

Once completed, the results of the report will be shared with the community via a press conference and distributed to key groups. The report will also be available online at

In addition to the Rady School’s partnership with SDMAC, the school offers unique programs to support service members and veterans, like the StartR Veteran accelerator program, which offers mentorship, support, and inspiration from other veteran entrepreneurs. For more information on the school’s support for service members and veterans, go to:

June 16, 2020 0 comment
1 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest

As the shelter-in-place orders find many of us exploring new hobbies—i.e. baking banana bread—and finding ways to fill time at home, MSBA student Diego Amenabar has been busy blogging. He has published two articles on the popular blog Towards Data Science. Not only that, but earlier this year he started his own website,, where he tracks data from wearable devices to inform his health decisions, and hopes to inspire others to do the same.

What do you enjoy about writing?

I made myself a goal to practice my writing skills and what better way to do that than to write interesting blog posts? It all started trying to create a portfolio of my work for future job applications. To be able to publish some works, I need original ideas so I can also try to publish them in an important website. That’s how it started and I’ve had lot of fun and new knowledge in the journey. I will probably keep writing while I have ideas that are worth to share.

What made you decide to pursue an MSBA?

I think information is going to drive companies in the near future. Being able to understand it and get insights from it is going to be a basic skill. Many people ask why an MSBA and not a Master in Data Science, and from my end, the most important part about using information to drive a company is to being able to “read” the data in the context of the business for it to be useful. For this, MSBA is the perfect mix between technology and business.

What do you enjoy most about the Rady MSBA program?

It is an intensive program. Coming from years of industry experience, some in fast-paced companies and some in slow-paced, you start to appreciate when the intensity pushes you forward in achieving your goals, and learn [what you need to know] in the work environment. You do need to be responsible and be able to deliver on certain deadlines.

Read Diego’s Towards Data Science articles:

Parallel API connections in R

Not a Funnel! Use Sankey to represent your sales process

Follow Healthy Analyst on Twitter @healthy_analyst and Instagram @healthyanalyst.

June 10, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest

The Class of 2020 has demonstrated extraordinary resilience and innovation. We are so proud to celebrate our graduates–albeit virtually–throughout the week. Please join us in congratulating these students and faculty who were selected by students as recipients of our 2020 awards.

The Robert S. Sullivan Award recognizes a student for a high level of leadership and contribution to the Rady School, UC San Diego, or larger community.

The Dean’s Award recognizes a student who epitomizes the philosophy of the Rady School (innovation, impact, collaboration, integrity and risk-taking).

Winners from all programs will be added here as they are announced. Don’t forget to join us for our Virtual Commencement broadcast 9-9:30 a.m. on June 13, 2020!


Student Awards

Dean’s Award

Jia (Jeff) Rui Wen served as the president of the Rady Finance Club and as MFin 2020 cohort rep, and participated and communicated important events and opportunities. Jia encouraged solutions and worked with the Rady faculty and administration to make the student journey better.

Robert S. Sullivan Award

Raven (Di) Deng represented the Rady School at several competitions, including the regional ACG Cup – placing second! He has been active not only in several Rady student organizations, they belonged to the UC San Diego competitive break-dancing club. With that busy schedule, Raven attended many events, representing the Rady School by being prepared and engaged.

Faculty Awards

Most Valuable Professor

Rossen Valkanov

Excellence in Teaching

William Mullins


Student Awards

Dean’s Award

Lauren Rowley was recognized by Poets and Quants as one of their 2019 “MBAs to Watch.” She held leadership roles in the Consulting Club, the Women of Rady, and the Rady Student Board. She worked on wide-ranging initiatives from rebuilding the Rady Student Board election process to rewriting the Board constitution and created a legacy that will make the school more equitable and efficient for all programs. She also brought community leaders to campus for training opportunities and meaningful partnerships, using her platform to the benefit of all students.

Robert S. Sullivan Award

Joseph Baini (left) and Samuel Jordi (below) led the Venture Capital and Innovation Club, creating opportunities for students and build their professional network. Last February, under their leadership, a Rady School team was invited and competed in the regional level VCI Competition in Salt Lake City.

Because of their consistent work dedicated to their professional field, we recognize their impact and contributions to the Rady community. Their focused vision for a meaningful personal learning experience is inspirational and shows that you can create the experience you desire.

Faculty Awards

Most Valuable Professor

Excellence in Teaching

Hyoduk Shin


Dean’s Award

Coffey Zhang is being recognized for her consistent leadership and initiative throughout the program. As the President of the Data Analytics Club, she collaborated with colleagues, faculty and staff to create learning opportunities. She has made a lasting impact not only at Rady but in the San Diego community – connecting with companies for engagement opportunities for her peers, and becoming a founding board member of the Women in Big Data San Diego chapter.

Robert S. Sullivan Award

Diego Amenabar created a culture of trust and assurance among his colleagues. Serving as cohort rep, Diego demonstrated a willingness to support and serve their constituents, being a voice for concerns and a partner for the Rady administration.

Faculty Awards

Most Valuable Professor

Excellence in Teaching

Vincent R. Nijs


Dean’s Award

Nizam Khan has been a champion for the MPAc program’s success and growth during its historic first year. He helped institute a Rady chapter of the Beta Alpha Psi organization, which will connect UC San Diego accounting undergraduate and graduate students. Nizam has positively represented Rady through professional engagement, supporting partnerships between the San Diego Accounting community and the Rady School that will benefit many future cohorts. This person has been recognized as a positive role model and enthusiastic leader.

Faculty Awards

Most Valuable Professor

James T. Deiotte

Excellence in Teaching

Wade Lindenberger

FlexWeekend and FlexEvening MBA

Robert S. Sullivan Award

Elizabeth Zhang-Chen is being recognized for her broad engagement and positive impact within the Rady community. Elizabeth was an active member of the Rady Life Sciences Club and used their connections within the local biotech community to arrange company visits for Rady students. She also used her industry expertise to share professional opportunities with Rady students, often making introductions and referrals. She is a member of the Vistage on Campus mentorship program and initiated the first ever VOC alumni reunion. She also participated in not one, but two StartR teams!

Faculty Awards

Most Valuable Professor

Hyoduk Shin

(selected by FlexEvening MBA)

Excellence in Teaching

Charles Sprenger

(selected by FlexEvening MBA)

Most Valuable Professor

Michael Finney

(selected by FlexWeekend MBA)

Excellence in Teaching

Krisztina Büti

(selected by FlexWeekend MBA)

June 8, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Rady Students Among Finalists in Fowler Global Social Innovation Challenge

Update 6/15/20: Brilliant Biome and Ethos Mask both received funding!

Brilliant Biome finished second out of all 30 teams and was awarded a total of $10,500 in funding, including $3,000 as the winner of the Qualcomm Wireless Impact Reach Award.

Ethos Mask was awarded $1,000 as the COVID-19 Innovation Award winner.

Throughout the past academic year, student teams from diverse academic disciplines put forth their ideas for sustainable social innovation and participated in the Fowler Global Social Innovation Challenge. This challenge promotes hands-on experience and provides student entrepreneurs the opportunity to develop an idea that aligns with the mission of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

As part of UC San Diego’s commitment as a Changemaker Campus, Rady’s Center for Social Innovation and Impact (CSII) facilitated a virtual information session for interested students throughout the university, and hosted an art of the pitch workshop by StartR accelerators co-director Kim Davis King. The CSII then selected a group of social impact experts to judge the pitch competition of five UC San Diego finalists.

Now, two teams with Rady students will represent UC San Diego in the virtual global finals on June 13, 2020. Finalists from seventeen countries representing thirty universities will pitch for up to $50,000 in seed funding.

Ethos Mask created a supply chain to manufacture 3D printed facemasks and distribute them to local healthcare facilities in need. Two full-time MBA 2021 students, (left to right) Amir Hassan and Nick DiGirolamo, and FlexWeekend MBA 2021 student, orthopedic surgeon Mark Schultzel, M.D., came together shortly after the COVID-19 pandemic struck the U.S. to quickly produce and supply these reusable masks.

Brilliant Biome offers a personalized microbiome approach to drug addiction and recovery. This team participated in the Spring 2020 cohort of StartR, and is comprised of scientists (from left to right) Sierra Simpson, Ph.D.; Gregory Peters, M.S., Ph.D.; and clinical project manager and FlexEvening MBA 2021 student Carrie Herbert.

RSVP here to attend the virtual Global Finals on Saturday, June 13 at 5 p.m.!

June 8, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest

Dear Rady Community,

We all have been deeply troubled by the deaths of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd, and the ensuing protests around the country and the world. The Rady School extends our heartfelt sympathies to their families as we recognize that no amount is enough to lessen their grief or sense of loss.  As a grandchild of Mexican immigrants, the wife of an African American man, and the mother of two African American sons, these events hit very close to home for me, as I know they did for many of you. Even more troubling is the fact that this type of violence against our fellow Americans of color is still both pervasive and persistent in our country.  We offer our sympathy to all African Americans who are deeply and personally impacted by these deaths, and acknowledge that we all suffer as a country when our people are injured.

The disturbing video of Mr. Floyd shows several nearby police officers who did not step in to ensure his safety.  Social psychologists call this the bystander effect, where individuals are less likely to offer help when others are present.  My hope as we pave a path forward is that we all stop being bystanders. (For more information on UC San Diego bystander training, follow this link).  We cannot heal and move forward if we ignore the differences in treatment between our economic classes and races, and the impact of that difference within our global community.  Protests that destroy property or put lives in jeopardy are not viable solutions; in addition, our collective experience of the current pandemic makes these large gatherings particularly unsafe at a time when our community is exhausted.

Thoughtful discussion and commentary as a reaction to injustice, however, helps to focus our attention and can be a catalyst for positive change. This is precisely the value of public education, which assures access for a diverse group of students who come from many different countries and backgrounds. At Rady, we understand the value of equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI), and we are committed to enhancing the diversity of our viewpoints and quality of our options.  We have already formed an EDI subcommittee intended to inform our new strategic plan.  In order to make our organizations stronger and more inclusive, we will develop initiatives that harness the knowledge from EDI research (see this Scientific American article for examples). I encourage everyone within the Rady community to expand your relationships beyond your natural network, and to actively seek understanding with others at work and at home. Let’s use our shared values of knowledge and education to ask the questions and seek the answers that will take us forward. 

We are proud that our UC San Diego leaders also denounce these events and propose future community conversations to provide opportunities for healing (UC San Diego statement).  For faculty, students and staff needing additional support, please see the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program and CAPS (Counseling and Psychological Services).  I encourage you to participate in activities that will not only help you process what is happening, but also help you contribute to solutions.   When the current unrest has subsided, it is important in the long-term to take concrete actions to heal these long-standing wounds and social issues.  

We heal and grow stronger when we work together. 

Lisa D. Ordóñez, Ph.D.

Dean, Rady School of Management

Stanley and Pauline Foster Endowed Chair

June 2, 2020 0 comment
1 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Rady Executive Breakfast Series Continues Virtually with Hector Lujan, CEO of Reiter Affiliated Companies

As the coronavirus continues to affect our public health and economy, the pandemic has reintroduced words into our everyday vocabulary. What does it mean to be “essential”? On what industries do we depend when so much around us shuts down?

The first-ever virtual Rady Executive Breakfast Series will feature Hector Lujan, CEO of Reiter Affiliated Companies (RAC), the world’s largest multi-berry producer. On May 21st from 8-9 a.m., Lujan will speak about his experience navigating the pandemic in the agricultural industry. RAC is an exclusive grower of Driscoll’s varieties of strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries across the United States, Baja California, Central Mexico, Portugal, Morocco and Peru.

Lujan, who holds a degree in business administration from Instituto Tecnologico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey, México, has worked for RAC since 2002, and served as CEO since 2017. He previously worked four years with a Mexican financial institution and six years in the agricultural sector. Earlier this year, Lujan was named one of the most influential people from Mexico by Lideres Mexicanos, a business and leadership magazine.

RSVP to attend the Rady Executive Breakfast Series here.

The Rady Executive Breakfast Series is sponsored by Union Bank.

May 19, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest
Meet the Teams of StartR Demo Day Spring 2020

Since its founding in 2013, the StartR non-profit accelerator program has provided resources, mentoring and access to funding opportunities to more than 190 teams. The program is offered in five tracks—Rady, Inclusion, Impact, Veteran and Teen, each providing unique opportunities to learn from experts and receive guidance for building a sustainable business. In total, companies that have participated in StartR have gone on to raise 118 million dollars.

Traditionally, twice a year, StartR teams have the opportunity to pitch their startups in front of the San Diego business community at a live event called StartR Demo Day. While the event will not occur in-person due to social distancing guidelines, the show will go on May 13th in a virtual format, as ten teams present to potential investors and contacts, and two of the teams will be awarded a $500 prize by a panel of judges.

Get familiar with the StartR teams below, and RSVP to attend Demo Day here.

The Bioenergy Project enables universities, restaurants, and individuals to convert the nutrients in food waste into usable products such as biogas energy and food. A prototype has been running since June 2018 and has mitigated over 23,000 pounds of campus food waste. The Bioenergy Project was the recipient of the 2019 Lemelson MIT Student Prize. (StartR Impact)

Brilliant Biome offers a personalized microbiome approach to drug addiction and recovery. (StartR Rady)

Dietary Microbe Detection (DMD) of DMD Flower explores and provides innovative, rapid and accurate detection of microbes to ensure food safety and quality. (StartR Rady)

The Helper Monkie is an assistive auditory device designed to help children diagnosed with Auditory Processing Disorder (APD) to succeed in traditional classroom environments. (StartR Impact and StartR Inclusion)

H3 Heroes Helping Heroes is a social enterprise that supports veterans, first responders and their families with programming and resources to improve mental health and wellness. (StartR Impact)

Latina Grad Guide seeks to “close the academic achievement gap of Latinas in the U.S.” via workshops, conferences, digital campaigns and an app to assist with graduate school applications. (StartR Impact and StartR Inclusion)

Padfoot creates pet innovative products “that don’t exist, but should.” (StartR Rady)

Sav-E shows shoppers the environmental impact of products through an app, website and browser extension. “We believe that awareness is the key to change, and our goal is to give people that awareness. Doing so will prompt people to think critically about what, how, and why they buy what they buy, allowing them to make shopping decisions that help their wallet and help the planet.” (StartR Impact)

Tebra is working to produce a new type of key lockbox for surfers and outdoor enthusiats. (StartR Rady) is developing a color-changing fabric to help reduce the excess inventory and waste by fashion retailers. (StartR Inclusion)

May 11, 2020 0 comment
0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest