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Pictured is Anna Volkova, a 2013 M.B.A. alumna from Sochi, Russia and a senior staff accountant for Gatesman+Dave. | Photo by Victoria A. Mikula

Meet Anna Volkova

Job title: Senior Staff Accountant
Employer: Gatesman+Dave
Degrees earned: M.B.A. with an international business concentration, Point Park University, 2013, and B.S. in international finance, Youngstown State University, 2010
Grad school activities: Graduate assistant for the School of Business and communications chair for the Graduate Student Association
Hometown: Sochi, Russia
High school: Hymnasium 15, Sochi, Russia
Now living in: Pittsburgh, Pa.
Hobbies/interests: Tennis, all outdoor activities, volunteering for Greenpeace and participating in any activity that helps to improve the environment
Twitter: @nusya32
LinkedIn: Anna Volkova

As an international student from Russia, why did you choose Point Park?

After completing my bachelor's degree in international finance, I wanted to further my education. I moved to Pittsburgh after graduation. I wanted to continue living in the city so I actively searched for a graduate school in Downtown Pittsburgh that would help me grow as a professional and further prepare me for the business world. Point Park University stood out to me because of its personalized, small classes and reputable M.B.A. program.

How did you land your current position as a senior staff accountant for Gatesman+Dave?

Just like any college graduate, I was very eager to enter the workforce. After obtaining my M.B.A., I landed a temporary-to-hire position at Gatesman+Dave, one of the largest full-service advertising agencies in the Pittsburgh region. This temporary position allowed me the opportunity to get my foot in the door of such a great company. I was later offered the position of accounting assistant and was most recently promoted to senior staff accountant. In total, I have been with the company for almost two years.

What were some of your favorite Point Park grad school experiences?

I had many remarkable experiences at Point Park. One in particular was speaking at the "Extraterrestrial Space Resources and the Outer Space Regime" faculty-student colloquium. Being a graduate assistant at the time, I conducted research alongside some of the School of Business professors. I researched everything from international politics to space economics, which in turn gave me the opportunity to speak at such a unique event.

Another distinct memory was being in the Graduate Student Association. I was elected as the communications chair. Through my involvement, I was able to strengthen my negotiation skills and learn better how to work within a large, diverse group of people. As a whole, our organization arranged various campus events such as the "Build Your Resume" workshop and the Global Trivia Bowl, which still lives on as an annual event! At Point Park, I met people from all over the world - Turkey, India, Vietnam and my native country of Russia. I will forever cherish the relationships and lifelong friendships I made with each and every one of them.

What advice do you have for our current M.B.A. students?

My one piece of advice to current M.B.A. students is to never limit yourself because you may miss out on a great opportunity. I personally had always envisioned working at a big office in a big city, vigorously climbing the corporate ladder. However, I would not trade my experience at Gatesman+Dave for any of that. Working at such a fun, exciting, fast-paced advertising agency has taught me so many new skills. I have absorbed an exponential amount of knowledge and far exceeded any career goals I had for myself at such a young age. So follow my lead - go, spread your wings and take advantages of all opportunities that come your way because you never know what doors they might open.

What are your career goals?

As of right now, I want to continue gaining experience at Gatesman+Dave. Last year, the company was named by the Pittsburgh Business Times as the number one fastest-growing private company in Western Pennsylvania in the marketing/advertising/publishing category. As the company continues to grow, I hope to grow as well.

Final thoughts?

I want to thank all of my professors at Point Park especially Dr. Kraniou, Dr. A. Maharaja, Dr. Sidky and Dr. Mannella for influencing and guiding me. I attribute a lot of my success to you all. I also want to thank everyone in the International Student Services and Enrollment office, especially Amanda Avampato and Rebecca Lee. The staff members in the ISSE office were a great resource and always so eager to help me with any issues I faced as an international student. Overall, I also want to say a big thank you to Point Park University for giving me such a well-rounded education and an unforgettable college experience.

Photo by Victoria A. Mikula, sophomore photojournalism major

More About: success story, M.B.A., Gatesman+Dave, Rowland School of Business, alumni