A Look Inside C-Level Confidentials

Zaya S. Younan, Photo by the Dallas Morning News

We’re all about experiential learning at the Neeley School of Business. C-Level Confidential is a prime example of this, allowing students to get their education straight from the source and interact personally with senior executives at top companies. C-Level Confidential takes “power lunch” to the next level.

During a C-Level Confidential event, a small group of students sit down for dinner with a senior executive to talk candidly about industry trends, learn about challenges upper-level executives face, explore how they make decisions and, hopefully, leave an impression that results in adding a powerful name to the student’s professional network.

“Dinner and drinks with that senior exec has a much different feel to it than attending a presentation in a crowded room,” says Peggy Conway, Director of MBA Admissions. “Our guests are much more comfortable sharing personal insight with students in this format, away from prepared speeches and the media. Students are able to actively engage in meaningful conversations with the guest, ask questions and share MBA experiences.

“The format also allows us to showcase the talented students we have here at Neeley,” says Conway. “Our students are polished professionals with highly marketable skills who leave a great impression. Job opportunities have certainly developed from these conversations.” 

Recent participants of C-Level Confidential include:

Steve Hill, Partner, Advisory Services, Innovation Leader, KPMG 
Kurt Kimball, EVP-North America, Compass Group 
Keith Harrison, Global Product Supply Officer, Proctor & Gamble 
Matt Rose, CEO, BNSF Railway 
Joe Clayton, former CEO and Chairman of the Board, Sirius XM Satellite Radio 
John Garrison, CEO, Bell Helicopter-Textron 
Julie Wilson, VP-Urban Development, Chesapeake Energy 
Ralph Heath, CEO, Lockheed Martin
Zaya S. Younan, Chairman & CEO, Younan Properties

Recent C-Level Confidential participant Zaya Younan shared his personal experiences with the students and how he transitioned in his career to where he is now. “The best opportunity in life is not the one you look for someone else to generate for you,” he told the students. “The best opportunities are the ones you create for yourself. Go out there, find a job and create your own opportunity.”

His business, Younan Properties, is one of the largest privately held commercial real estate companies in the country, specializing in acquiring mid- to high-rise office buildings throughout the United States. Founded 12 years ago, the company currently holds $3 billion in assets.

Younan has spoken at other universities, including UCLA and USC, and provides a unique perspective on what sets C-Level Confidential and TCU apart from other universities when it comes to experiential learning.

“I was very impressed with the [Neeley] faculty. They showed tremendous interest in teaching students practical lessons to use after they graduate,” he says. “The faculty and teachers care so much about the future of the students. It really touched me.”  

Neeley students truly appreciate the value of these conversations. “[The students] were really looking for that type of discussion. They were very engaged,” he says. “I had more follow-ups from TCU students than I did from other schools where I spoke about the same thing.”

Hands-on, experiential learning is a defining characteristic of the Neeley MBA program and the opportunities available to our students are second to none. Discover more about experiential learning at Neeley School of Business here.

Interested in getting a TCU MBA? Request more info about the Neeley School of Business graduate program or apply now.

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