Holly A. Holder 285-74-8098 Essay One: Discuss your career progress to date and future career plans. How will pursuing a Saint Louis University graduate business degree impact your plans? My post-undergraduate career has been with The Boeing Company. I have held multiple job functions with increasing responsibility over the four years that I have been employed at The Boeing Company. I began my career as a Procurement Agent. As a procurement agent, my main role was to be the primary point of contact and represent The Boeing Company to the suppliers. I issued purchase contracts to multiple suppliers and was responsible for ensuring that they delivered a quality product on time and at a fair and reasonable price. Then I was given the opportunity to rotate to a different function within my company. Since May of 2002 I have been a Business & Planning Analyst specializing in Material Cost Management. I have gained a lot of experience analyzing data from various systems to produce time-phased budgets and estimates-at-complete for multimillion dollar aerospace support contracts. My immediate work group has experienced significant workload growth in the last year. To handle this additional work, several new employees have either been hired or rotated from other organizations into my work group. I have taken on the responsibility to train and mentor these individuals who are new to my group. My near term career plans are to again rotate to a different discipline or function within the company. In my future position, I plan to apply my past experiences and also learn new skills. I believe that having career experience in multiple disciplines allows me to understand how each areas job responsibilities and my individual efforts contribute to the end product and the company’s bottom line. Pursing a Saint Louis University graduate business degree is in line with my desire to gain diverse experiences and knowledge to make myself a well-rounded businessperson. I also believe that balancing both work and school commitments will help me grow both personally and professionally. While obtaining my degree I will have the opportunity to meet and work with diverse business people, students, and professors from all over the Saint Louis area. A degree from SLU will also give me valuable contacts and experiences related to businesses outside of my current company. Holly A. Holder 285-74-8098 Essay Two: Each graduate business student at Saint Louis University is expected to leave the program better than he/she found it. How do you plan to contribute to the MBA/graduate business community at SLU? While obtaining my degree I will have the opportunity to meet and work with diverse business people, students, and professors from all over the Saint Louis area. I hope to learn from their experiences as well as share my experiences with them. I believe that I can contribute my own unique experiences and background and the perspective it has given me in life. My fellow students will leave SLU having learned something from my experiences and perspective that they can take with them and apply to their own situations. One contribution that I will make to the SLU graduate community is the knowledge and perspective that other student’s will gain from my current viewpoints and my past experiences. At the same time, this concept of sharing my knowledge and experiences works in reverse. I know that I will also learn from other’s experiences. I plan to apply both the knowledge I learn from class books, case studies and other student’s experiences to my future career. I also enjoy doing volunteer work to help those that are less fortunate. I am excited to become a part of SLU’s Jesuit tradition, which emphasizes service to others. I have always enjoyed volunteer work. When I was obtaining my undergraduate degree from Southwest Missouri State, I was an active participant in my school’s chapter of Alpha Phi Omega. Alpha Phi Omega is a co-ed service fraternity, which is dedicated to providing community service while also building strong friendships and “brotherhood”. Since graduating from college and starting my career, I have continued to participate in community service opportunities. Over the last couple of years I have enjoyed participating in the Mentor St. Louis Program, which is a mentoring program for grade school students within the St. Louis Public School System. I have also participated in other smaller projects such as volunteering to do yard work at St. Vincent Home for Children. While a student at Saint Louis University, I plan to actively participate in the volunteer opportunities that exist at a university with SLU’s commitment to service and the community in general. I believe that through volunteerism I will leave both the SLU MBA/ business community and the greater St. Louis community in general a better place than how I found it. Holly A. Holder 285-74-8098 Essay Three-Part I: What is the most valuable lesson you have learned in a leadership role? The most valuable lesson I have learned in a leadership role is to be adaptive to the various personality types and working styles of each individual member of a team. Recently, three new employees have either been hired or rotated from other organizations into my immediate work group at Boeing. I have taken on the responsibility to train and mentor these individuals. I have also been given the assignment of delegating workload to these co-workers who are all new to my work group. This experience has opened my eyes to the challenges involved with managing a diverse work group. One member of my work team is very independent and prefers to try to work alone to figure out a task or problem. She has clearly told me that she will let me know if and when she needs help or has questions. With her a hands off approach works best. Another member of my team has a completely opposite style and personality. He would prefer that I guide him through every step and process necessary to complete a project. He seeks constant advice and guidance every step of the way. Each new member of my team has different needs and learning preferences. A standard boilerplate approach does not work well when you are dealing with individual people. Adaptability to the situational needs of individuals is one of the most valuable lessons I have learned from my recent leadership role at work. Since every one is unique, as a leader I have learned that I must tailor my approach and training style to meet their unique needs and preferences. Essay Three-Part II: Outside of work I….. Outside of work I enjoy spending time living the “American Dream” of owning my own home. I purchased my first home in 2003. A lot of my free time and energy over the past year and a half has gone into maintaining and upgrading my modest little piece of the American Dream. Everything from basic yard maintenance to a complete bathroom overhaul has kept me very busy. In the yard, I thoroughly enjoy selecting plants to use in the landscape and watching them flourish and grow. On the inside of the home, I have time and again utilized my painting talents to spruce up my living areas. I am blessed with a very handy and generous extended family. My extended family also enjoys home improvement projects. Recently, my Aunt, Uncle, Mom & Dad made the trip to St. Louis from Cincinnati, Ohio to spend a week at my house in order to remodel my bathroom. Remodeling in this instance meant tearing everything out of the small room down to the stud walls and starting from scratch. This project was a lot of work but also very rewarding to see everyone’s hard work result in a final product that I thoroughly enjoy and appreciate on a daily basis. In the recent past, I used to anticipating the time when all of my house projects will be complete. I used to look forward to the day when there are no more items on my “To Do” project list. A wiser, more experienced homeowner informed me that the project list will never be complete. They said that a house is always a work a process. I have come to understand that they are probably right. I now plan to enjoy my home ownership journey along with the projects and the memories that they create.