Our Stories

Recalculating His Reach

Owen leads Kunysz to aim higher

Devin Kunysz
Senior Product Manager, Physical Stores, Amazon

Vanderbilt University MBA 2015

After earning a degree in marketing in 2008, Devin Kunysz worked for two consumer goods giants: Pepsico and Heinz. (During his undergraduate days in his hometown of San Diego, he also worked part-time as a tour guide at Sea World. “I still know more about the difference between a sea lion and a seal than you care to know,” he says.)

Based on his experience, Devin aspired to be a brand manager for a consumer packaged goods firm. Now he aims for something higher: a position as a senior marketing executive. “During my time here, I’ve really grown,” he says, “and I feel that I have the potential to move up.”

During his first week at Vanderbilt, he realized he’d made the right choice of schools. “I went on a job interview, and I had 40 text messages, from classmates I’d known less than a week, wishing me good luck,” he says.

Later, at a marketing case competition at Rice University — where Devin and three Owen teammates claimed first place — he realized how high he could reach. “It’s easy to forget just how much you are learning, but that competition showed me how much Owen had transformed me in just six months,” he says.

“When I got to school, I was a sales guy with a passion for marketing. When I was at that case competition, I realized that I had become a marketer with a thorough understanding of finance, accounting and marketing principles.

“Just being in that room at Rice, with three of my closest friends, all working toward a common goal was amazing. None of us were stressed. It was just four friends working on a problem, and that’s how I want business to be.”