2020 Best & Brightest: Jackson Spear McCune, Bucknell University (Freeman)

Jackson Spear McCune

Bucknell University, Freeman College of Management

I am interested in everything. Talk to me about geology, poetry or artificial intelligence.”

Fun fact about yourself: I was a two-time All-Conference selection player in the Mid Atlantic Rugby Conference and I studied Chinese for six years.

Hometown: Seattle, WA

High School: Seattle Preparatory School

Major: Global Management

Minor: n/a

Favorite Business Course: Sit was Supply Chain Management because the class project evolved into a feasible, real-life solution to a problem facing the local community.

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Beta Gamma Sigma Business Honor Society
  • Freeman College of Management Student Advisory Board
  • Multiple leadership roles within my fraternity on and off-campus
  • A three-year starter for the Bucknell Men’s Rugby team with 2x All Mid-Atlantic Rugby Conference Team honors
  • Received local press recognition for a group supply chain project that aimed to establish a community bike-share program for underserved residents of the surrounding three counties

Where have you interned during your college career? 

  • I was a logistics intern at Stacy Logan Design in Seattle, where I helped organize import/export requirements and logistics for high-end rugs and textiles from countries in Central and East Asia, the Middle East, and Northern Europe.
  • I externed at Foundation Energy in Dallas, where I learned the financial workings of a large scale-up/midstream oil company.
  • I was a finance intern at Haig Partners, LLC, a company that handled the sales of groups of auto dealerships.
  • I worked at Deloitte in Washington, D.C., as a federal consulting intern.

Where will you be working after graduation? Deloitte as a Federal Consulting Analyst

What company do you admire the most? I admire any company that is looking to create viable alternatives to the meat industry because I think meat alternatives are a seriously underappreciated class of products that will be vital to protein-rich diets in the not so distant future.

Who is your favorite professor? My favorite professor is Skip McGoun, Finance, because he has a unique array of interests and abilities. He encourages us to think differently and to determine our own explanations for the things that we observe and might otherwise accept at face value.

What did you enjoy most about your business school? I loved the fact that so many classes allowed us to take our learning to the real world and to either create real-life products or devise complex solutions to community issues. We were able to gain a macrocosmic understanding of our material and apply it on a microcosmic basis in a way that allowed us to see, appreciate, and continue to learn from our work for years to come.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? Set a lot of goals from yourself. Don’t be afraid to change your goals, but never stop working as hard as you can to achieve them, regardless of what they are.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? Business is only half about what you know. The other half is who you know. Companies and individuals alike invest a lot of capital into relationship building.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am proud of the bike share program I helped create and the 80-plus bikes that now give people an ability to get to school, work, and the grocery store that they didn’t have before. I am proud of being a successful student in terms of what I have learned and what I can hold conversations about now. Most of all I am proud of the friends that I have made and the people that I have met who have helped make me the person that I am now.

Which classmate do you most admire? I admire my friend, John Montani, for his tremendous work ethic and his ability to achieve the very lofty goals he sets for himself. I also admire the intellectual conversations we frequently have and his always unique and thoughtful perspective.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I have my dad to thank for my success because he has always embodied the values of hard work and true commitment. He has always had very high expectations for me, but they were never higher than the ones he had for himself. He has been by my side for my entire life no matter what, even now he is always just a phone call away. He has helped me make every hard decision I’ve ever had to make and there is nobody whose advice I’d seek before or value over his.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list? 

  • Be fulfilled, help the people around me to feel fulfilled
  • Earn the respect of my peers and others

What are your hobbies? Rugby, exploring new places, reading interesting books, trying new things like spearfishing and skydiving, skiing, swimming, running, spending time with friends and family.

What made Jackson such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2020?

“It would be missing the point to attempt to point to any specific activity that Jackson has engaged in, any specific knowledge or skill that he has acquired, or anything specific that he has been responsible for that has made him “such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2020.” Rather, Jackson has clearly exemplified what the Freeman College of Management hopes for from its students. Too often, “education” has become synonymous with “training,” that is, a university is considered to have been successful when its graduates are able to “do something,” whatever that “something” might be. While Jackson has indeed “done” quite a lot, and these accomplishments in themselves have made a difference, what really matters is who Jackson is and why that has mattered.

One of the core beliefs of my graduate adviser was that “Interesting people will do interesting things.” And one of those interesting things is that they stimulate others. It’s great to be around interesting people because they’ll get you to think about something that you’ve never thought about before or get you to imagine doing something that you’ve never imagined doing before. Their responses to you will even get you to see that something within you that you’ve taken for granted is really something special. It’s easy to see that Jackson’s many and varied activities, knowledge, skills, and accomplishments add up to his being a very interesting person. And of course, we believe that Bucknell has provided an educational environment to cultivate more and different interests.

I know from personal experience that conversations with Jackson have always been interesting and have left me with more information and ideas than I had when those conversations began. And I’m certain that that has been the result of the hundreds of conversations and interactions he’s had with others while he’s been here. It’s that sort of considerable impact about which it’s impossible to be specific that has made him an invaluable addition to the Class of 2020.”

Professor Skip McGoun


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