Driven by a passion for learning, Maria Fernanda Genie 24MBA takes any opportunity to expand her knowledge, often with a global approach.
“I am ambitious,” Genie says. “I always want to know more.”
Originally from Honduras, Genie sought out an undergraduate education at Georgetown University, diversifying her studies with majors in marketing and management and a minor in theology. She spent semesters abroad in Hong Kong and Barcelona.
After traveling to Japan for a post-graduation trip, Genie worked at a cybersecurity firm in San Francisco. Then, after a year in California, she relocated to Mexico City to help build the company’s Mexico office. After six months in Mexico, Genie returned to her Honduran family business, Henie Farma, a pharmaceutical company founded by her father and grandfather that manufactures and distributes branded generic medications.
Genie created and manages Henie’s marketing department, transforming the business from largely door-to-door sales by creating more focused marketing strategies and digitizing company processes.
“I brought my knowledge of common U.S. business practices, technologies, and tools back home,” she says.
A Small Class Packs a Big Punch
After Genie got married, she honeymooned in South Africa before moving to Atlanta—six minutes from Emory’s campus. She always imagined earning her MBA but didn’t know when she would return to school. After seeing Emory around town, she decided to apply.
“I want to have bigger oversight of the family business,” Genie says. “I want to learn more about operation, strategy and management. Because I specialized in marketing, and that’s what I’ve practiced throughout my career, I became pigeonholed into marketing. I want to gain more experience in other mindsets.”
Now several months into Goizueta’s One-year MBA, Genie reflects that the program is intense, but her 42-person class feels intimate.
My class is half international, half American, so you can just imagine the difference in perspectives and cultures. It’s not only what you learn in the classroom, but what you learn from your classmates.Maria Fernanda Genie
“The professors know your name, where you’re from, what you want to do, so they tailor the information,” Genie says.
Genie says Henie Farma has a lot of opportunities for growth. One of her aspirations is to expand the company to include a skincare line.
Genie will continue to work for the company remotely from Atlanta—taking any chance to travel back home or elsewhere.
“I like to learn about different cultures, and the best way to do that is traveling—eating from different cultures, talking to people about their cultures,” Genie says.
So far, Genie has visited 38 countries, and says India and Korea are next, after having met several Emory peers from the two countries.
Her involvement with the family business alone will keep her moving.
“Our medicines are manufactured in Honduras, but really the only part that’s Honduran is labor,” she says. “Pretty much everything else is from a different part of the world. Our supply chain is extremely global. There’s always traveling in business.”
Whether you’re looking to accelerate your career or make a career pivot, our full-time One-Year MBA and Two-Year MBA programs and part-time Evening MBA and Executive MBA programs, prepare you to challenge business as usual and become the innovators who disrupt it. Learn more here.