Dewayne Whitfield is a full-time student in the MBA/MA Design Leadership degree program offered jointly by the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School and the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA).
Whitfield came to the Carey Business School after serving his country as an Information Systems Technician in the United States Navy. While deployed overseas, he started an online business to sell custom made suits.
What attracted you to the Design Leadership program?
Being a part-time entrepreneur with my own business, I saw a need for being able to create solutions. There is more to it than just running a business, you have to be able to create solutions for people. That’s why I got into the Design Leadership program. I wanted to learn the science of creating the best solutions.
When you are finished you will have both an MBA and Master’s of Arts degree, but this is not an “arts program” is it?
With the design portion of the degree program you learn to synthesize solutions. With thebusiness degree portion, we learn to analyze and implement the solutions we develop.
What influenced you to choose the Carey Business School and MICA?
I was attracted by the curriculum, but I also liked the experience of the professors. It’s one thing to know how to do something, but it’s another to have experience actually doing it. I also felt like I could gain a lot from my fellow students.
Working with my fellow students is important for building a strong network. I try to pick up skills from my colleagues like graphic design or how to make decision models. You can learn some tricks of the trade from their experiences.
Is there a class or project that you found especially beneficial so far?
Negotiation class stands out for me the most. Before I joined the program, I negotiated all the time by just trying to get the best deal. The course taught me that there is an actual science behind negotiating. I learned how to make solutions that would actually benefit me and also the person I was negotiating with.
What is next for you after graduation?
Once I graduate, I will have the skills I need to be a successful entrepreneur. I’m not sure what my next business venture will be, but I know I’ll be ready.