Name: Blair Foster
Graduation Year: 1997
Employment Organization/Title: Operational Risk Manager at Wells Fargo
Why did you choose the NC State Jenkins MAC program for your graduate education?
The MAC program was relatively new when I earned my undergraduate degree. I thought it was a seamless transition as I knew most of the professors already and was wanting to learn more while exploring career opportunities.
How did your experience in the program contribute to your professional achievements and successes?
Some of the experiences in the program that contributed to my achievements centered around the various groups that I worked with. It seemed like we were always working in groups doing projects and case studies. Working in groups will not change once you graduate! Throughout my time in the program, I began to develop the ability and appreciate dealing with different styles and personalities and ensuring the group met deadlines while delivering a quality product.
What advice would you give for prospective and current students who are interested in your industry/profession?
During a portion of my time at Wells Fargo and legacy organizations, I spent time on-campus recruiting. My message to students then was to always demonstrate an ability/desire to learn, work on verbal and written communication skills, and develop sound critical thinking skills. My message today would not be any different.
Could you give a brief explanation of your current line of work, and what has led you to it?
I currently lead a team within Wells Fargo Compliance, responsible for regulatory compliance testing of Banking & Lending groups within our Wholesale Division, which serves corporate and commercial customers. My skills developed during my days during internal auditing made an easy transition into my current role. Those skills include critical thinking and communicating (verbally and in writing).
What do you believe is your most interesting accomplishment since graduation?
I’m not sure how interesting it is, but I do think I may be one of the few that have stayed in one organization (albeit there have been mergers) since I graduated. I’ve never been one to move around for more money as the experiences and the aspects of my work that I have been exposed to have been enough to keep me in one spot!