M.B.A. Alumni Profile: Robert Toth, Associate Lawyer for K&L Gates in Downtown Pittsburgh Tuesday, October 6, 2015
Meet Robert Toth
Job title: Associate Lawyer
Employer: K&L Gates
Degrees earned: M.B.A. with a concentration in management information systems, Point Park University, 2013; juris doctorate and dual B.S. degrees in biomedical engineering and chemical engineering, University of Pittsburgh, 2008 and 2005
Hometown: Pittsburgh, Pa.
High school: Baldwin High School
Now living in: Bethel Park, Pa.
Hobbies/interests: Playing with my two-year-old son and finding my "inner toddler," mountain biking, cycling, fishing and spending time with family
As a lawyer, why did you decide to pursue an M.B.A. degree?
Most of our clients are business clients. To provide the most effective legal advice, you always have to consider the business objectives of what they are trying to achieve in the context of their legal problems.
So the idea behind getting an M.B.A. degree was to have a more well-rounded understanding of the business environment in which our clients operate in order to provide them with more value-added legal advice.
What factors made you choose Point Park for graduate school?
Location was the biggest factor. My wife, Jennifer Toth, (who is also a Point Park M.B.A. alumna and business analyst for PNC Bank) and I both have offices Downtown. We considered other universities but what attracted us to Point Park were the small class sizes, flexibility and the intimate nature of the M.B.A. program. Before enrolling in the program, we sat in on a few of Dr. Maharaja's classes and met some of the other faculty at an open house. Point Park's whole package sealed the deal for us.
What are your key job responsibilities?
I'm in the intellectual property practice group at K&L Gates. My job primarily involves preparing and prosecuting patent and trademark applications. I also provide clients with strategic legal advice regarding patent, trademark, trade secret and copyright issues involved in their businesses.
How have your M.B.A. classes helped you in the work you do for K&L Gates?
The accounting and corporate finance classes in the M.B.A. program were the most helpful to me because I learned to read balance sheets, profit and loss reports and other types of financial statements. That type of knowledge you don't really get in law school or an engineering program. I did not have a background in these types of business and financial documents. Becoming fluent and able to read and understand those documents has helped me a lot with my business clients.
What was your most memorable Point Park grad school experience?
The memory that stands out to me the most was taking class the last semester with my wife, who was very pregnant at the time. She gave birth to our son (who was 10 pounds, 8 ounces when he was born!) soon after that semester ended. I'm sure our classmates in the corporate finance course would remember us.
Is there anything else you'd like to add?
What is most valuable about an M.B.A. degree is the opportunity for advancement. An M.B.A degree from Point Park is a good investment for professionals who may not be seeing growth potential in their current position.