2023 Best & Brightest Business Major: Josephine Kim, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Josephine Kim

Worcester Polytechnic Institute

“The ultimate California girl who loves a good SQL query and sunsets at the beach.”

Fun fact about yourself: The first time I ever left the country was during my trip abroad to London during my junior year of college!

Hometown: San Jose, CA

High School: Leigh High School

Major: B.S. Management Engineering with a concentration in Data Science, M.S. Business Analytics

Favorite Business Course: Business Data Management with Professor Jim Ryan.

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work, and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Dean’s List: (2019-2023)
  • WPI Varsity Women’s Soccer: (2019-2023)
  • Tau Beta Pi: Engineering Honors Society (2022-2023)
  • Beta Gamma Sigma: International Business Honors Society (2022-2023)
  • Rho Lambda: National Sorority Leadership Recognition Society (2021-2023)
  • NEWMAC Women’s Soccer Academic All-Conference :(2020-2022)
  • Alpha Phi: Executive Administrator (2020-2021), Assistant New Member Educator (2021-2022)

Where have you interned during your college career?

Amazon Web Services (AWS): Seattle, WA – Cloud Support Associate Intern (2022)

Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E): San Francisco, CA – IT Planning Analyst Intern (2021)

Where will you be working after graduation? Amazon Web Services (AWS): Cloud Support Associate

Who is your favorite business professor? My favorite business professor is Professor Ryan! He teaches every course in a way that is not only fun, but also extremely eye-opening, interesting, and intuitive. I remember him explaining how “magic happens” when business and technology are combined in new ways, which inspired me to pursue my Masters in Business Analytics.

What is the biggest lesson you gained from studying business? Follow your gut instincts is an important lesson I gained from studying business at WPI. During junior year, I followed my gut and decided to take a leap of faith and pursue a Masters in Business Analytics in addition to my undergraduate studies at WPI. While this seemed daunting then, it was one of the best decisions of my life because I trust and believe this is an area where I can excel and reach goals beyond my expectation. I plan to use my knowledge gained from WPI and continue to trust my instincts throughout my career.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? I would tell a student to “just do it.” At WPI, the business school encourages students to follow their interests and provides so many meaningful opportunities for which I am extremely grateful. While the business field may be daunting because of how broad and vast it is, I think that should be embraced, because there is beauty in all the different areas and technologies covering business today (and in the future). Indeed, as a student, there are so many different courses, careers, and concentrations that the business field provides here at WPI. As a student at WPI, you can navigate through your studies to see what you excel at and which aspect of business interests you the most to pursue a career in and make a difference in the business world.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? One thing I found surprising was the diverse opportunities across all types of technology companies and services for a business major. For example, I had internships at Pacific Gas & Electric Company and Amazon Web Services (AWS) that provide completely different services. Also, I will be joining AWS full time as a Cloud Support Associate post-graduation, leveraging my business background in a STEM related field. I believe business and technology go hand in hand and being a business major has really shown me that having a strong business foundation can open so many different opportunities for you!

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? One thing that I would have done differently is participate in more networking opportunities to make connections with the fellow students in the business school at WPI. Networking with business students, as well as alumni, is valuable in exploring career opportunities and asking for general guidance.

What business leader do you admire most? A business leader I admire is Reshma Saujani, the founder of Girls Who Code (GWC). I find her inspiring because her nonprofit organization is changing the future for women. By encouraging and teaching girls to code through GWC, Reshma has taken the bold initiative to do something about closing the gender gap in computing and be equal with male counterparts having access to all the same opportunities.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of the work that my team and I were able to accomplish for the National

Organization for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) as a part of our Interactive Qualifying Project (IQP) in London Spring 2022. Throughout our time in London, we researched the types of legislation that would increase FASD awareness, helped educate professionals, and identified tools and programs that will help individuals with the disorder. Working with this organization was extremely rewarding. I felt that my team and I were able to make an impact on bringing awareness to the policies and practices that are further needed in the UK to support individuals with FASD.

Which classmate do you most admire? Grace Casey is a classmate I admire because she is not only an amazing classmate, but also the ultimate teammate on the soccer field. Grace always has a willingness to help others even if she is busy with hours of homework to finish or an exam the next day, she will always be the first person to put whatever she is working on to the side if you need her help. She is not only one of my best friends, but someone that I look up to and I cannot wait to see all that she accomplishes in the future!

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My success would not have been possible without the continued support and guidance of my parents. They are the reason why I continue to work hard in school, and life in general. They have sacrificed so much for me, and I would not be where I am today without them. Mom and dad, if you are reading this, thank you for all that you have done for me. I love you both endlessly.

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

  1. Getting my MBA from one of the top programs in the United States.
  2. To eventually work for myself, whether that be starting my own company or becoming a CEO.

What are your hobbies?

  • Running! After having played soccer for my entire life, I decided it was time to pick up a new hobby. I enjoy running because it helps me decompress after a long day and takes any stress away. I am also currently training for a half marathon!
  • Another one of my hobbies is surfing! Since I am from California, I have always loved the ocean and I spend most of my time at the beach during the summers. I would not say that I am good at surfing, but it is something that I have recently picked up and enjoyed!

What made Josie such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2023?

“Josie is a very engaged, dedicated student. I had the pleasure of having Josie in both an undergraduate and graduate class.  Her perception and ability to grasp concepts correctly as well as quickly was consistent across both courses.”

Jim Ryan
Associate Teaching Professor of Information Technology

“I have had the pleasure of working with Josie during her final undergraduate capstone experience. I admire her tenacity, desire to learn new things, and willingness to challenge herself. Josie leads by example, as she inspires others through her involvement across campus. She is both kind and intelligent, and also a great example of an innovator who can bridge the worlds of business and technology. I expect her to continue on this bright path as she starts her career.”

Adrienne Hall-Phillips
Associate Professor of Marketing


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