Dave Yesko, Part-Time MBA '14
Creating Insightful Business from Here
“Much of what I learned in our classes on leadership and organizational development has made me a better person as well as businessman."
For Dave Yesko, MBA ’14, Earning his Degree Paid off with a Rewarding Career Change
Dave Yesko, MBA ’14, grew up in Chicago and holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in Creative Writing. After 10 years of working various writing jobs in San Francisco he developed the desire to run his own business. Lacking any formal business education, he decided to go back to school to pursue an MBA.
Yesko found the University of San Francisco (USF) was the best fit for what he was looking for; an accredited university in the heart of high tech.
I wanted a part-time program so that would allow me to keep working, and was looking for an affordable option with a great reputation,” Yesko said. “USF was the only school that embodied all of those things and I felt that USF’s entrepreneurial spirit was the right fit for me.
Yesko believes that the connections he made with other students in his cohort were the most valuable aspects of his business education.
“USF does an amazing job of bringing people together who are both culturally and professionally diverse,” Yesko said. “My cohort consisted of professionals in marketing, HR and tech industries, and included people with very senior positions at large companies. USF’s diverse culture really embodies what the city of San Francisco has to offer.”
Yesko was challenged by a busy schedule, juggling school, work and his personal life.
“I won’t sugarcoat it,” he said. “The first semester was brutal. But I learned how to effectively manage my time. I figured out what I needed to do on a week-to-week and month-to-month basis in order to hit my professional, personal and academic goals. It’s hard work but you have to realize that if you want to advance your career, make a career change, or are simply not happy doing what you’re doing, education will provide options. I’ve been in dead-end jobs where I knew no matter what I did, I would never advance past that role. You just have to be prepared to put in the hard work, because it’s the only way you’ll get the most out of the experience. I’m absolutely glad I did.”
Yesko recently accepted a consulting position at the research and technology firm Gartner, an opportunity he found through contacts made during his time at USF. Looking back, Yesko says that USF’s MBA program simultaneously allowed him to achieve his professional goals and grow as a person.
“Much of what I learned in our classes on leadership and organizational development has made me a better person as well as businessman. Self-reflection and self-understanding are important tools in ethical leadership, and they have helped me understand how I fit into the greater community, both locally and globally. That has been the biggest difference in my life, and I wasn’t expecting that at all.”
Yesko believes that he can use this newfound insight to change the world.
“I’ve learned that it’s okay to be alone if you know that you’re fighting for the right cause. Sometimes you need to go against the grain in order to make a lasting difference, if ultimately, in your heart of hearts, you know that you’re fighting the good fight. This has opened up doors for me that I never knew existed.”