Taylor BatesPart-Time MBA U.S. Navy Surface Warfare Officer
“The staff and professors all understand that we have full-time jobs and a life outside of class—they’re always supportive and have realistic expectations of the students. For that, I’m very thankful.”
When U.S. Naval Officer Taylor Bates applied to the PEMBA program, he was at sea in South America. Somewhere near Guam, he used his phone’s hotspot to fill out the online application. A few weeks later as his ship pulled into Hawaii, from the noisy bridge of his ship, Taylor did a Zoom interview with admissions. Throughout the entire process, he was impressed with how flexible and understanding the staff and advisors were. That’s when he knew Questrom was the right place for him.
“The program has lived up to my expectations, if not exceeded them,” Taylor says. “The staff and professors all understand that we have full-time jobs and a life outside of class—they’re always supportive and have realistic expectations of the students. For that, I’m very thankful.”
With a bachelor’s in sociology from Texas A&M University, Taylor went straight into the Navy. Before Questrom, he’d never taken a business class, and for the past five years, had no private sector experience. For him, the PEMBA program has been eye-opening and fascinating. “All the classes are new to me,” he says.” And the best thing is, I can see the immediate application of everything I’m learning.”
As a Surface Warfare Officer, Taylor was deployed twice. The first time, he went to the Middle East and Southeast Asia, where he visited Dubai, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Oman. On his second tour, he traveled to the western pacific and the Caribbean, where because of COVID he wasn’t allowed to leave his ship for 128 days. Since he’s been back on shore, Taylor has been teaching naval science full-time at the Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) Boston Consortium.
These days, his schedule leaves little time for anything but school, work, and family. But he knows that someday, after his military service, he’ll have plenty of time for a second career.
“At some point, I will get out of the Navy, and I think an MBA will best help me transition to the civilian workforce and translate my military leadership experience to the private sector,” he says.
Taylor isn’t sure what direction his second career will take yet, but he’s enjoying exploring his options. He says he’s learning a lot from the diversity of experiences and backgrounds of his fellow MBA students. “It’s super cool to learn about the different industries and jobs that are out there,” he says, “and how my classmates approach them.”