Julia Renee Lower
Michigan State University, Eli Broad College of Business
“Social chameleon; advocate for women; lover of Bravo TV.”
Fun fact about yourself: I was born in Warsaw, Poland!
Hometown: Troy, Michigan
High School: Troy Athens High School
Major: Bachelor of Arts, Supply Chain Management, Eli Broad College of Business
Minor: Entrepreneurship & Innovation
Favorite Business Course: SCM 479: Supply Chain Cost Management
Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:
Broad Student Senate
- Senior Vice President (April 2020 – April 2021)
- Co-Director of Outreach – Professional Development
- Undergraduate Programs Committee Student Representative
- Internal Audit Committee Chair
- HR Recruitment Chair
- Events Committee Member
- Mentor – Broad Mentorship Program
Spectrum Consulting Group, Inc. (SCG)
- President and CEO (May 2021 – May 2022)
- Senior Consultant
- Business Analyst
Management Consulting Academy
Russell Palmer Career Management Center
- Management Consulting Peer Career Coach
- BUS 102 Teaching Assistant
- SCG Scholarship/Vedaant Garg Memorial Scholarship: This scholarship was created from SCG’s commitment to giving back to youth education. In 2021, the SCG Scholarship gave four $5,000 scholarships to incoming Spartans. In 2022, SCG rebranded the scholarship to be the Vedaant Garg Memorial Scholarship after the passing of peer, friend, and consultant of SCG Vedaant Garg. The scholarship intends to increase its impact by providing more scholarships in years to come.
- Volunteer at Peace Ranch: Helped build and paint a barn for horses used in equine assisted therapy
- Volunteer at the Willows: Served lunch and visited assisted living home
- Volunteer at Habitat for Humanity: Worked with a group of peers to help build and improve homes for families
- Finance in Russia Study Abroad Scholarship
- 2021 Richter Scholar
- Dean’s List
- Honors Student
Where have you interned during your college career?
- (Summer 2018) HR Intern at DTE Energy; Detroit, Michigan
- (Summer 2019) Operations Intern at Ingersoll Rand – Club Car; Augusta, Georgia
- (Summer 2020) Demand Planning Intern at PepsiCo – Gatorade; Chicago, Illinois (Virtual)
- (Summer 2021) Summer Business Analyst at Kearney – Chicago, Illinois
Where will you be working after graduation? Strategic Operations Business Analyst at Kearney
Who is your favorite professor? My favorite professor is Professor Kymm Hadlock. In her Business Communication and Presentation course, she establishes trust by getting to know every student on a personal level. Professor Hadlock helps students gain confidence in their public speaking skills and encourages them to be excellent business leaders through the power of communication. Her impact reaches deep in the lives of her students, and she has helped make me into the professional I am today. The way Professor Hadlock empowers her students makes her a phenomenal educator and one I strive to be in the future.
What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that business is always about people. The people you work with, work for, or provide products and services to – they all matter and should shape the way you approach making decisions. This is extremely apparent in my role as President of SCG. The more we support our consultants, the higher quality of work is delivered to our clients. The better relationship we have with our clients brings in exciting work for our consultants. At the end of the day, the symbiotic relationship between all stakeholders can support the health and wellness of business.
What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field?
- Have a diverse network – Having a network is extremely important, and having a diverse one is even better. There will be instances where you need advice for a niche area, or maybe you’re just curious about the newest technology on the block. Having a diverse network is best thing you can do to support yourself.
- Be curious – In reality, no company or organization is ever perfect and there will always be problems to fix. Be curious and ask smart questions and a world of opportunities will open for you.
- Practice active listening – From my experience, almost all problems are created and solved through communication. To be an effective communicator (and leader), you must actively listen and ask questions before focusing on what to say next. This allows you process, empathize, and better connect with others.
What business executive do you admire most? Currently, Bob Iger is the business executive I admire most. For one, I have always been enamored with the industry of entertainment and believe there is immense pressure for a business that relies on evoking powerful emotions and experiences for its customers. Growing up as a Disney fan, I was personally impacted by the work done at Disney led by Bob Iger. In addition, I admired his journey to becoming CEO and Chairman at Disney after reading his book, The Ride of a Lifetime. His unapologetic recollection of lessons learned was thought-provoking and relatable for a young professional like me. Specifically, I share his value of courage, knowing that to get to the right solutions you must be brave enough to ask the right questions.
Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? While I’m very proud of my extracurricular and academic honors, my proudest achievement occurred in my senior year at MSU. In December 2021, I addressed the Michigan State University Board of Trustees and advocated for sexual assault justice policy reform. As a survivor, it took years to heal from trauma. However, I refused to let what happened to me define me. Advocating for myself and the thousands of other people like me was empowering and validating. I’m proud of my character and having the courage to speak up for what is right. This is something I will always carry with me.
Which classmate do you most admire? The classmate I most admire and have had the pleasure working with is Shri Dareddy. Shri serves as the Director of Marketing and HR for SCG. In less than a year, she has been able to improve many of the internal operations at SCG, ensuring every member has the best experience. When we stepped into our year as E-Board, I challenged my team to turn SCG from a student organization into a business. Shri delivered, and more. She is driven, talented, and passionate when it comes to her work. Specifically, Shri is someone I can count on and use as a sounding board when it comes to my ambitious ideas. I admire her ability to empathize and listen, which will make her a phenomenal leader in business. I have said before that business is all about the people. Well, Shri is all about the people. SCG would not be where it is today without her leadership. I’m excited to see where she goes in life and in her career.
Who would you most want to thank for your success? The person I would like to thank is Yoodong Hwang. Yoodong and I met my freshman year, and he was the first person to recognize my potential and introduce me to the field of consulting. From there, he has been a stellar mentor by supporting me in every facet of professional and personal development. Yoodong’s grit and passion for mentorship inspired me to give back to my peers the way he was able to give back to me. As a former Poets&Quants Best and Brightest honoree, Yoodong has always been someone I look up to. I am grateful for our friendship and mentorship over the last four years, and I am lucky to have him in my corner.
What are the top two items on your professional bucket list? The first item on my bucket list is to further my education with an MBA and hopefully a Ph.D. to become an educator. Reflecting on my time at MSU, I’ve always gravitated toward extracurriculars or jobs that involved helping students and peers. I would love to become an educator in a line of research that is meaningful to me but also impactful in supporting other people. I believe my time in consulting will expose me to the forefront of challenges in business, and I’m excited at the prospect of pioneering solutions through research in my professional career.
My second bucket list item is to work abroad. There is power in understanding different cultures and perspectives, especially in a globalizing economy. I have always loved traveling and meeting new people. To have an experience working abroad would be impactful in shaping my view on the world and would push me outside of my comfort zone to make me the best professional I can be.
What are your hobbies? Whenever I’m in a new city, I enjoy finding the tallest building and climbing to the top to enjoy the view. There is something about reaching new heights that gives you great perspective.
What made Julia such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2022?
“Julia Lower is one of the most exceptional students at the Broad College of Business. She is a born leader and leverages her leadership skills to help others. Her outstanding achievements are notable both in and out of the classroom.
Julia’s academic achievements were recognized by being listed on the Dean’s List almost every semester at MSU. Due to her curiosity and dedication to supply chain, she became one of four national Richter Scholars in 2021 and was awarded four internships at Fortune 500 companies.
Outside of the classroom, Julia shines in her ability to serve her peers and community. As a junior, she became the Senior Vice President of the Broad Student Senate and managed the organization’s operations to support 6,000 Broad students and their experience. As a senior, she became the President and CEO of Spectrum Consulting Group (SCG), a nonprofit consulting firm on campus that is dedicated to enriching its consultants, clients, and community. In this role, she managed to almost double the firm’s revenue in less than a year and launched the Vedaant Garg Memorial Scholarship, which provided multiple $5,000 scholarships to incoming Spartans. Additionally, she works as the Management Consulting Peer Coach, helping hundreds of students to land internships and full-time offers with her guidance.
Above all, Julia’s character is what makes her so extraordinary. She leads with kindness and positivity, touching the lives of everyone she meets. Her advocacy for bettering sexual assault policies and diversity, equity, and inclusion programs has left a permanent impact on Michigan State University. She is brave, selfless, and always fights for what is right.
After graduation, she will be joining Kearney as a Supply Chain Consultant, with the hopes of receiving her MBA and PhD in the future to become a lifelong educator.
If I had to summarize Julia in one sentence, I would say that she is a role model for others and an inspiration to us all.”
Associate Professor of Marketing:
“Julia has given back to the Broad College through her extensive work in the Broad Senate, in many different board-member roles since her first year at Broad as a Residential Business Community student (our selective living-learning community for business leaders). She has also been involved, and most recently served as President, for Spectrum Consulting Group, an organization focused on giving students the opportunity to provide business solutions to for-profit clients’ business challenges. Related to that, she is an early member of what was then called the Consulting Academy, a professional development group devoted to helping students in landing employment in the consulting industry. She also has served as a peer career coach supporting students interested in pursuing consulting and practicing case interviewing with them. She has helped numerous students achieve success in being more prepared for case interviews. Many Broad students know Julia as a leader, and I simply consider her a rock star who will certainly be going places with her professional career, starting as a consultant at Kearney.”
Associate Director of the Russell Palmer Career Management Center
“Let me start by highlighting Julia’s incredible leadership skill. She is a very competent and confident young woman with strong opinions and creative, often cutting-edge ideas for change. Within Senate, where she is often responsible for leading conversations on such topics, she creates an environment that welcomes and encourages other Senators to share their thoughts and opinions. She shares her own opinions, but never using her elected leadership role to “get her way”, but as part of a representative process to get to the best possible outcome, whether it includes her individual thinking or not.
This year, Julia has made some operational changes that have enhanced Broad Senate’s ability to support and represent 6000 undergraduate students. These changes have been particularly critical as MSU is predominately operating in a virtual mode with the COVID-19 pandemic and these changes are enabling Senate (and separately the Dean’s Office) to keep a much stronger pulse on our students.
In prior years, Julia has been responsible for identifying critical workshops (e.g., Python training, Excel training, DEI training) of interest to our undergraduate student body and delivering these workshop by defining the strategic goal and hiring a professional to deliver the training. Julia has also managed the Broad Mentorship Program that supports approximately 170 freshman each year.
Julia is an excellent student as noted by her overall GPA of 3.8 and a 4.0 in her Supply Chain Management major. Prior to my current administrative role, I served as the Department Chair for Supply Chain Management for 2 years and can attest to the difficulty of accomplishing this. The Broad College is particularly proud of the strength of our Supply Chain Management program and the decade of US News and World Report #1 Ranking! Part of that ranking reflects the large size of our program and the rigor and difficulty associated with the major. Very few students can carry a 4.0 across their SCM major courses.
As demonstrated by her most recent three internship commitments—Ingersoll Rand (2019), PepsiCo (2020), Kearney (summer of 2021), Julia has received complex and meaningful internship experiences enhancing and deepening her interest in supply chain management. This interest and experience extends far beyond learning SCM concepts. Instead these experiences have provided a testbed set of opportunities to develop tools to support forecast risk and demand planning. In addition, these internship experiences have provided Julia an opportunity to execute a series of tools and techniques in support of project management and product quality in addition to material management. While almost all Broad’s SCM students graduate with an internship in their major area and an increasing number of students graduate with two such internships, very few have been successful at securing three internships, particularly at such visible firms.
Lastly, I have had the honor of knowing (and in some cases recommending) prior Richter Scholar candidates from MSU. Just as importantly, I have met so many of our Broad alumni who were selected as Richter Scholars and are so proud of having been recognized in this way. Finally, from a SCM Department and Broad College of Business perspective, I fully understand and promote the importance of the Richter Scholar recognition for our students and college. Everyday, I have the honor of working with the strongest student leaders in the Broad College across almost 50 different student organizations. I would like to share, without any reservation or bias, that I truly believe Julia Lower is one of the top three student leaders I have engaged with across almost 10 years of Dean/Department Chair level administrative responsibility.”
Dr. Cheri Speier-Pero
E&Y Professor of Accounting and Information Systems
Associate Dean, Undergraduate Programs
Michigan State University
Broad College of Business
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