2024 Best & Brightest Business Major: Ruben Garcia, University of Michigan (Ross)

Ruben Garcia

University of Michigan, Ross School of Business

“Student Leader, Public Policy Participator, Internal Revenue Code Devotee, and Urban Planning Critic.”

Fun fact about yourself: I know how to fence (the sword fighting not the lawn barrier).

Hometown: Port Huron, Michigan

High School: Cardinal Mooney Catholic High School

Major: Bachelor’s of Business Administration, Focus in Accounting

Favorite Business Course: Accounting 317: Federal Taxation and Managerial Decisions

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Central Student Government at U-M, Vice Speaker of the Student Assembly
  • Ross BBA Student Council, President
  • BBA Marketing Club, Member
  • BBA Accounting Club, Member
  • Academic Success Program U-M Athletic Department, Tutor

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Michigan State House of Representatives, Constituent Services Director / Legislative Aide
  • Eastern Michigan Bank, CEO Project Intern
  • Plante Moran PLLC, Audit Intern

Where will you be working after graduation? Plante Moran PLLC, Certified Public Accountant

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? Organization, organization, organization!

The actual work of business careers is 90% being organized and 10% everything else. As long as you have a system that keeps you on top of your chores, you will have time to improve and excel in the specifics of your career.

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? The applicability of the knowledge I’ve learned.

While I have no qualms with any other academic field (except organic chemistry), I was surprised at the amount of material that is relevant to almost any career path I am taking. A doctor might not so much benefit from the intricacies of computer programming, but they wouldn’t regret the financial management class they took when they go to start their own practice.

Looking back over your experience, what is the one thing you’d do differently in business school and why? Nothing! (Meet more people).

While I definitely have made many blunders over my academic career, they have improved me just as much as working hard and succeeding have. Failures are one of the best learning opportunities, so I cherish each one of them (or at least I try to). However, if I had to go back in time, I would meet as many new people as possible. Relationships with great people are more valuable to me than career progression.

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? Mastering the art of the email.

If 90% of a business career is being organized, 80% of that organization is managing, writing, and sorting your email. While initially this seemed like a common-sense task, once I reached 2,000 emails in my inbox sophomore year, I knew something had to change. Not only have I learned to make excessive use of folders and the delete button, but how to diplomatically tell a superior to get back to you after two weeks of silence in twenty words or less.

Which classmate do you most admire? Michael Hartt

While I like to pride myself on my optimistic outlook and positive energy that I bring to meetings and group work, Michael blows me out of the water in that category. He is always happy to simply exist, whether it be at an intensely monotonous meeting or social event with free food. He maintains this joy, all while having a stronger work ethic (and caffeine tolerance) than most. It is one thing to work hard and be passionate, and it is another to bring infectious happiness along with it. Michael manages to pull off both. I admire this herculean task.

Who would you most want to thank for your success? My parents, Jun and Elizabeth Garcia

If support for me could be measured in pounds, my parents would break the scale. Even amidst my incessant teenage need for independence, my weird hobbies and activities, and the rising cost of college, they have been there for me. They took the time to learn what best ways to support me even though they didn’t have to and even when I was probably very annoying. This is something that deserves recognition at the highest level.

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

  • Run for public office
  • Promote someone

What made Ruben such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2024?

“As BBA Council President, Ruben embodies the positive business values of Michigan Ross, such as inclusivity, collaboration, and connection. He works to understand and bring together various points of view to find a common ground that unites the BBA community. He has worked diligently to implement structural changes that support an inclusive and supportive environment. Beyond his strategic vision for our community, Ruben is just a wonderful human being who takes the time to check-in with his fellow peers and develop genuine connections across grade levels on BBA Council. He is quick to lend a hand, ear, or offer an encouraging smile to anyone in need.”

Stephanie Pawlik
Student Affairs Program Manager

Undergraduate Program Office


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