EMBA Student Spotlight: Patricia Beard - Vice President, Branch Office Manager, Fidelity Investments

Nov. 21, 2017

“As a result of the UNLV EMBA program, I have made a successful transition from managing to leadership, and as anyone in business knows, that’s no small feat,” said Patricia Beard (Cohort 15), vice president, branch office manager with Fidelity Investments.

There was never any doubt that Beard would pursue an Executive MBA, the only question was when.

Early in her career, Beard went to work with Fidelity Investments, quickly establishing herself as a go-getter and problem-solver. Starting off in a front-desk entry level position, she set a goal to be a branch office manager. When Beard finally decided to earn an EMBA in 2016, she had already achieved that goal, serving as vice president and branch office manager for the company’s Henderson, Nevada location where she supervises a 15-member sales team.

While reaching her goal was a well-earned and celebrated accomplishment, it also left a void. A self-proclaimed proud overachiever, Beard loves her job and 12-year career with Fidelity, but she longed to aim her quest for knowledge at a new challenge. The timing was right to pursue an Executive MBA. So, Beard searched for a program that would help her build on the skills she had acquired throughout her career. “UNLV EMBA’s emphasis on leadership and collaboration was a deciding factor for me,” said Beard. “I knew this was something I wanted to do for both professional and personal development.”

Preferring to work in partnership with, and learn from, her fellow cohort members rather than compete with them, Beard was pleased to find with the UNLV EMBA program a diverse group of people she could connect with - in and out of the classroom. The individual experiences each EMBA student brings to the program, and the collaborative nature of the cohort, was just what she wanted. “I’m surrounded by intelligent, motivated individuals. To learn from other people’s insights is a powerful experience,” she said.

Beard credits her upbringing on a cattle ranch in the Black Hills of South Dakota and her hard-working parents for shaping her strong work ethic. She also thanks her fellow UNLV EMBA cohort members for inspiring her throughout the demanding EMBA program.

With graduation less than a month away, the UNLV EMBA program has helped Beard understand and value her strengths. “It’s given me new knowledge and skills, but more importantly self-assurance. In professional situations where I may not have spoken up, I now have the confidence to express opinions and make recommendations that I know are significant to the discussion,” she said.

Summing up her UNLV EMBA experience, Beard said “I learned to be my best self and to be respected and appreciated for it.”

With a career trajectory to the C-level ranks of Fidelity Investments clearly mapped out, Beard declared, “I’m shaping my future with an EMBA from UNLV.”