2024 Best & Brightest Business Major: Paige Parsons, University of Richmond (Robins)

Paige Parsons

University of Richmond, Robins School of Business

“A passionate, extroverted, competitive, ambitious, and empathetic student, professional, and a part-time pilates instructor.”

Fun fact about yourself: Throughout my college career, I have worked and studied in Pennsylvania, Virginia, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Barcelona.

Hometown: Bear Creek, Pennsylvania

High School: Wyoming Seminary College Preparatory School

Major: Business Administration
Favorite Business Course: Professional Selling

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

Extracurricular/Community/Leadership Throughout College Career

  • Executive Board Member for the University of Richmond’s Relay for Life (Helped establish at the University of Richmond in 2022)
  • University of Richmond Sales Team Competitor
  • Inferno Hot Pilates Instructor at Hot Yoga Richmond
  • Member of Kappa Delta
  • University of Richmond Tour Guide

Awards Include The Following:

  • Beta Sigma Inductee (Awarded to the top 10% of the business undergraduates in the Junior Class)
  • MVP Award at National Team Selling Competition – Kelley School of Business (Given to the individual who has stood out against the student competitors in his/her ability to establish rapport, overcome objections, and lead their team in the National Team Selling Competition at the Kelley School of Business)
  • Hawkins Bradley Jr. Scholarship (Merit-based)

Where have you interned during your college career?

University of Richmond Jepson School of Leadership; Richmond, VA; Student Research Assistant (August 2021-December 2021)

  • Collected data from various newspaper articles and effectively organized information to assist a professor in writing a book that analyzes crimes committed by Clementine Barnabet.

HCA Healthcare; Nashville, TN; ITG Pathways Intern (May 2023-August 2023)

  • Created automation for annual regulatory updates to patient financial data using Ataccama One Reference Data Manager.
  • Executed Logical Data Modeling, Physical Data Modeling, and built Extract-Transform-Load (ETL) plans; gained a strong understanding of the data foundation.
  • Produced an annual savings of $5,309 and a 94% savings on manual processes through automation development.

Hot Yoga Richmond; Richmond, VA; Inferno Hot Pilates Instructor (January 2023-Present)

  • Helped establish Inferno Hot Pilates classes at Hot Yoga Richmond which has developed the business and yielded an annual ROI of over $120,000.
  • Tracked class attendance to increase clientele; consistently sold-out classes and taught private classes for large parties.
  • Created exercises and playlists designed for all ages and various levels of fitness.

Paycom; Richmond, VA; Junior Executive Sales Intern (January 2024-Present)

  • Worked collaboratively with the office sales manager, intern program manager, and team of sales representatives throughout the sales cycle to close deals.
  • Effectively detailed new prospects, updating and inputting new information.
  • Spent 8 hours per week cold calling new prospects and setting appointments for sales representatives.
  • Set 3 appointments per week and created 350 prospect updates per week.

Where will you be working after graduation? Johnson & Johnson Ethicon as a Sales Training Representative

Who is your favorite business professor? Dr. Jeff Carlson is my favorite business professor. He has served as a professor, advisor, sales coach, mentor, and role model in my life. His love for teaching his students and sparking passion in others is incredible. He sparked my love for sales inside the classroom as my Professional Selling instructor, and outside the classroom as my Sales Team coach. You can always count on Dr. Carlson to engage with students throughout class, invite questions and curiosity, and foster a collaborative and challenging environment. He pushes his students to be the best version of themselves while enacting incredible empathy. I attribute so much of my success to his guidance, support, advice, insight, and belief in me. He seems to be able to do it all, showing up for his students as both a mentor and a professor, his faculty as a leader, and his family as a father and husband. I aspire to be able to positively impact others in every sector of my life in the way that he does.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? The world of business will open endless possibilities for you and your career. Business majors are not constrained by their studies, but instead are given the possibility to truly explore what they are passionate about. As a business major, I have worked in the hospitality, fitness, healthcare, and human capital industries in sales, IT, marketing, and more. A business major opens opportunities to explore and uncover your strengths and passions. I cannot think of a better major to set you up for success in a boundless world of possibilities.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? What has surprised me the most about majoring in business is the expansive knowledge and understanding of the business world I have gained at the University of Richmond. Studying Finance, Marketing, Operations, Accounting, Sales, Organizational Behavior, and Management has provided me with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the business world. I did not realize that, as a Marketing major, I would acquire such a plethora of knowledge about the functionalities of each sector of business. As a professional stepping into the corporate world, I feel well-equipped to comprehend every part of the organization I work for and understand how each sector aligns and intersects.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? I would have started networking with alumni earlier to gain a broader understanding of potential careers and opportunities in the corporate world. As I began to network more extensively my senior year, I was able to grow my network and explore numerous career paths I had never even considered.

Which academic, extracurricular, or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of winning the MVP Award at the National Team Selling Competition at Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. This award was given to the individual who had stood out against the student competitors in their ability to establish rapport, overcome objections, and lead their team in the competition. I have always aspired to move into upper management in my professional career, and this award reinforced my passion and ability to lead others while being a team player.

Which classmate do you most admire? I admire Kate Amabile the most because of her professionalism, dedication, and kindness. Kate established Relay for Life at the University of Richmond, which has now become one of the top performing organizations on campus. I was lucky enough to serve in a leadership role on a team of students that helped organize the first Relay event. Seeing Kate’s drive and dedication in the classroom always inspired me, but watching her passion and love for serving others outside of the classroom allowed me to view Kate as a role model. Kate is the most genuine, kind, positive, hardworking, and disciplined student and individual I know. Her character is well respected both inside and outside of the classroom by peers and professors.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? The person(s) I most want to thank for my success are my parents. They have supported me every step of the way as I navigated through college and my professional career. They helped me stay true to myself and my values amidst failures and successes, pushed me to step outside of my comfort zone, and aided me in creating change in my environment to achieve my goals. When I decided to pursue a career in medical device sales, many told me it would be almost impossible to break into the industry without any experience. My parents thought differently and believed in my ability to achieve what I had set my mind to. They were the first to celebrate my success as I secured a position with Johnson & Johnson, and their belief in me has enabled me to surpass what I thought was attainable. I truly would not be where I am today without the love and support, I have received from my parents.

What are the top two items on your professional bucket list?
I want to become the top Account Executive at Johnson & Johnson.
I want to become a Regional Vice President/Sales Manager.

What made (Student) such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2024?

“What makes Paige so special?

It is with great enthusiasm that I support the nomination of Paige Parsons. Paige is a Business Administration major with a concentration in Marketing. Serving as Paige’s academic advisor and teaching her in my Professional Selling class, it has a been an honor to witness her many wonderful accomplishments.

Paige’s academic record demonstrates a student who has thrived. Her GPA places her among the top of her class. In the classroom, Paige treats each class session as an opportunity to strengthen her knowledge and skills and to collaboratively work with and lead her peers. Paige also asked the most thought-provoking questions that augmented any topic of discussion. This type of presence was a benefit to all and positively changed the class climate. In October, Paige was a member of the Robins School team that competed in the 2023 National Team Selling Competition sponsored by Indiana University’s Kelley School. As one of her coaches, it was a privilege to see Paige lead her team. Paige is a fierce competitor who has a strong ability to balance a high IQ and EQ to achieve winning solutions. She uses these abilities to strongly connect with her audience. During the competition, Paige was an expert at listening to her clients to determine their underlying needs. She used that connection and understanding to help her team skillfully convey a complex analytical solution in a format that strongly resonated with the clients. It was no surprise that Paige earned an MVP award for her great leadership and performance.

Beyond impressive academics, what makes Paige a special undergraduate student was the many positive changes she has made in the community outside of the classroom. She was one of the founding members of our campus Relay for Life annual event.  She served on the executive board and led the Publicity and Social Media committees resulting in the creation of a successful campus wide tradition. You could also find Paige serving as an ambassador of the university by serving as a campus tour guide. Or you could find Paige helping a local Yoga studio develop its client case by establishing and instructing a new Hot Pilates class.

Paige has truly made the university and community better, and I cannot wait to see what she will accomplish in the future!”

Dr. Jeffrey Carlson
Associate Professor of Marketing and Chair of the Marketing Department
Robins School of Business, University of Richmond

DON’T MISS: 100 BEST & BRIGHTEST UNDERGRADUATE BUSINESS MAJORS OF 2024

Questions about this article? Email us or leave a comment below.