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Cheryl Hunter-Grah: Now Cooking with Gas

Non-engineer gains expertise and confidence for engineering management job

Cheryl Hunter-Grah
Senior Product Care Engineering Manager for North American Food Preparation, Electrolux

Vanderbilt Executive MBA 2018

Cheryl Hunter-Grah is an engineering manager, but she’s not an engineer.

At Electrolux, where she has been since 2010, Cheryl worked her way up from overseeing literature on new products to overseeing engineering teams focused on continuous improvement and cost reduction for cooking products and facilities in North America. She’s also responsible for managing the engineering cost out budget of direct material spends for the company’s North American Cooking division.

With a background in communications, Cheryl says, “I wanted to fill in some gaps of my business understanding. I also wanted a little more confidence.”

For that, she turned to the Vanderbilt EMBA program, just 45 minutes away from where Cheryl works in Springfield, TN.

“I feel like am surrounded by smart people who are also trying to better themselves,” she says. “I love the holistic approach that Vanderbilt takes in regard to their students. We are seen as whole people with families and lives. I also love the attitude toward leadership — humility. There is always more to learn and more ways to grow.” 

Less than one year into the program, Cheryl already felt much better positioned to handle her responsibilities at Electrolux. “So many of the finance puzzle pieces fit together better now,” she says. “I have been in many of our PnL meetings, but wasn’t quite sure which levers moved which targets. I now understand and find so much more use of those meetings. I also have a much better understanding of how my team’s work affects the organization’s bottom line.”

“I have a much better understanding of how my team’s work affects the organization’s bottom line.”