Our Stories

Balancing Babies, Banking and MBA

New mother in new country finds support at Vanderbilt for new career

Rosangela Merchor Santana
Senior Product Manager, Amazon

Vanderbilt MBA 2017

Rosangela Merchor Santana knows about balancing family and career. Not only was she the mother of a young child when she enrolled at Owen; two weeks after classes began, she gave birth to her second daughter.

“The timing was very hectic,” says Angie (as her friends call her), in what must rank as a classic understatement. “But it honestly has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.” With the unconditional support from her husband and help from faculty, staff and colleagues, Angie was able to take a week off during the already busy first month of the MBA program and then jump back in.

That may have been the most obviously personal way that the Owen community supported Angie, but it wasn’t the only one.

When she joined the program, she had expected to remain in the retail banking industry, where she was four years into a promising career as an analytics deputy manager with the leading bank in her native Peru. “But the MBA gave me the chance to explore different career options and industries,” Angie says, and soon she found herself gravitating toward a “finance/corporate position in industries I am passionate about.”

With the help of the Career Management Center staff and her CMC coach at Owen, Angie was able to focus on particular industries and positions to pursue. “They gave me a structured way to analyze this” and to begin contacting companies, she says.

Now, after landing an internship in Amazon’s Finance Leadership Development Program in Seattle and accepting a full time offer post-graduation, Angie is well on her way — and, with her family, doing it in her own balanced way.

Fun Fact: In college, Angie participated in a work/travel program to the US where she sold books door to door in Casa Grande,AZ.

“Having a small school where people care about you as an individual is invaluable.”