MBA Takeover: TJ Kennedy, Executive MBA 2017

Caitlin Magidson

Caitlin works with students and alumni in Washington DC as a transformational Career Coach. She provides guidance around self-exploration, job search strategy, and networking through individualized coaching and professional development courses.

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TJ Kennedy is a 2017 graduate of the Carey Executive MBA program. He has had a 14-year career in wireless technology and general management and is currently the President of the First Responder Network Authority known as FirstNet. TJ helped FirstNet get off the ground from a start up to become a $40 Billion Public Private Partnership (PPP) that is deploying and operating a mission critical 4G LTE network in all 50 US states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia. Prior to joining FirstNet, TJ was the President of Raytheon JPS Communications and led the Public Safety business at Raytheon.

Question: What advice would you give new graduates entering the workforce?
Answer: Be authentic to yourself and to your future employer. Be willing to do the hard work to get to your dream career. No one starts at the top, but go work for a company where you can earn the job you really want. Take chances and never be afraid to take on a more challenging opportunity.

Question: What is one thing students should do while in school to prepare for a job?
Answer: Meet and talk to everyone who is working in the field you want to be in. Ask them every question you can think of but most important, ask them what hard things they had to do to get to the current point in their career.

Question: What is your favorite thing about your current job?
Answer: The mission. The mission of FirstNet is to create a mission critical public safety network that will meet the needs of our nation’s First Responders. Since I started my career in public safety prior to getting into the technology business, I know how much this technology is needed and I know it will revolutionize how Public Safety is delivered around the world.

Question: What was the most influential experience you had at Carey?
Answer: The experience of learning from my amazing Executive MBA classmates was incredible. The time spent learning together created a bond that is second to none and allowed an education that will stay with me for the rest of my life.

Question: What three words would you use to define your time at Carey?
Answers: Grounding. Growth. Understanding.

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