Our Stories

Paul Kendall Tackles Another Summit

Mountaineer embraces challenge of preparing for marketing career

Paul Kendall
Associate Brand Manager, PEDIGREE®

Vanderbilt Master of Marketing 2017

Paul Kendall knows a little about challenging himself. An avid outdoors enthusiast, he’s a whitewater kayak instructor who can handle Class IV and V (the toughest) rivers. Once, he summited four peaks in the Pacific Northwest (Mt. Baker, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Olympus and Mt. Adams) during a month-long mountaineering trip.  

So when he completed his undergraduate degree, Paul was ready to take on a Master of Marketing program to get the solid foundation in business skills and marketing he believed would give him an edge in landing a job at a top company.

“The school’s reputation and its Nashville location were factors in his choice to enroll at Owen,” says Paul. But “the main reason I chose Vanderbilt was because the Master of Marketing program allowed me to be in classes with first- and second-year MBAs. Being in class with them really pushed me academically and helped me learn even more than being at other schools in other programs.”

The program’s structure, Paul believes, also helped prepare him for the corporate world. “A highlight of my classroom experience was working on so many different projects with many different groups,” he says. “As a marketer, working in groups in many different roles is a key skill to develop to become successful.”

And besides equipping him with skills to scale career summits, Paul says the MMark program gave him a sense of direction: “Before coming to Owen, I only thought that marketing was what I wanted to do. Now I have been able to focus my interest specifically on brand management for a consumer packaged goods company.

“I think the program will help me get a jump-start on a career in CPG marketing,” he said just after graduation. It did. One month later, Paul began a job with Mars Petcare in the Nashville area, which offered another bonus from the program. “The social life in Nashville,” he says, “is hard to beat.”

Fun Fact: Paul has skied 15 different ski resorts across the United States.

“Being in class with [MBA students] really pushed me academically and helped me learn even more than being at other schools in other programs.”