Byron White – Class of 2004
College: Carleton College (’04-’08)
Advanced Degree: MBA, University of Michigan (‘11-’13)
*Profession: Business Development at Google
I was in the first graduating class at University Academy. I applied to college with good test scores and recommendations, but a low 2.7 GPA and no savings. Still, I decided to be ambitious, so I looked for top schools with good financial aid. I was fortunate enough to be accepted at Carleton College, an excellent liberal arts college that funded my full financial need. I studied literature there, and was able to spend time abroad in London and Madrid.
Later, I took an equally ambitious approach in my job search, starting with the best company I could find. With a lot of hard work and luck, I landed a job at Google, where I’ve held Sales, Marketing, and Business Development positions over the past seven years.
I think that two of the strongest predictors of a person’s outcomes are ambition and planning. I try to remember to think big, put myself out there for the best opportunities, and not get discouraged by what seems impossible. The best results come from really bold attempts, not little steps. I’ve also looked for ways to stay connected and give back. I remain an active volunteer and contributor to UA, Carleton, and KC Friends of Alvin Ailey, all of which have helped me tremendously. My primary volunteer focus is the improvement of educational and career outcomes for younger people. I’m honored to now serve on the Carleton Board as a Young Alumni Trustee in one of two spots for graduates of the past 10 years.
*Update: Since submitting his spotlight, Byron has moved to Strategic Partner Lead at Google where he has been employed since 2008. He also began serving on the board at UA Foundation (formerly Friends of UA) in 2015.