Spotlight on Interdepartmental Studies Alumni: March Bishop

Name: March Bishop ’08

Occupation: Sr. Manager, Marketing and Communications at Roshan Telecom in Kabul, Afghanistan

Education(UR and additional): BA, University of Rochester in International Relations; MBA, Harvard Business School, May 2013

Current city/state of residence: Kabul, Afghanistan

Community activities: Meridian Society; Alpha Phi Sorority

What activities were you involved in as a student and what did you gain from them?

As a member of the Meridian Society in the Office of Admissions I gained valuable insight into how Admissions processes work and more importantly got a chance to practice sales.  Being a tour guide and hosting coordinator, I was always selling prospective students and parents on the merits of the UofR and how those merits related to each individual student.  Sales is such an important skill!  If you think about it – we’re constantly selling.  We sell ourselves in job interviews, in graduate school interviews and in countless networking events.  At work we sell our companies to prospective clients.  As social people we sell friends on events we’ve planned or sell our friends on having us participate in their cool events.

What did you do immediately after graduation?  How did you decide to take that path?

The Department of the Navy recruits on campus for its Acquisition Intern Program.  I thought this would be a perfect fit for the intersection of my interests in economics and the U.S. defense market.  And indeed it was a good insight into working for the U.S. Government in Washington, D.C.  I subsequently used my experience in acquisitions as a consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton to bid for government contracts.  Despite my career orientation shifting quite a bit since then, these were great entry-level jobs that taught me a lot about the industry.

Where would you like to be in five years? 

Currently I’m working for Roshan, Afghanistan’s leading telecommunications operator, which aims to facilitate social and economic development through connectivity.  While I am not sure what geography, industry or function I will be in in five years, I do plan to continue working in economic development through the private sector.  It is exciting how many ways this could manifest itself as a job and it is perfectly acceptable not to have a concrete plan!