Wednesday, September 24, 2014
Latasha Watkins, MBA'14: The Wonder Woman
BS'98, Chemical Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
MBA’14, Consumer Marketing Academy, Kelley School of Business
Latasha Watkins had a healthy career at General Mills that spanned supply chain and operations. She’d been there 14 years, but she knew there would be a point when she wanted more. Soul searching turned into studying for the GMAT, and she found what she was looking for at the Kelley School of Business.
The catch: Her family of four. It took some adjusting. For two years, Latasha lived in Bloomington with her one-year-old son, while her husband lived and worked in Chicago, keeping their three-year-old son grounded there in his life and at school. Here's how she made it work.
Describe your pre-MBA career.
I had been working at General Mills for over 14 years in different roles that spanned supply chain and operations, and I was progressing very well in my career. There was a point, though, when I could see where the path was leading and I wasn’t completely satisfied with how it would inevitably play out. I wanted more. Soul-searching turned into studying for the GMAT, and soon I was moving full force ahead.
What’s it like to bring your family to Kelley?
My family is more important than anything, and my husband and I made this experience work for us all. I live here in Bloomington with my one-year-old, Jonathan, while my husband spends most of his time in Chicago with our three-year-old, Jayden. he works in Chicago and keeps our son grounded there in his life and at school. An unforeseen win happened through this process: Jayden has established an incredible bond with my husband. They may have not had that opportunity had it not been for my two years away at Kelley.
How has Kelley prepared you for the next step?
Kelley helped me redefine what I thought success was. Before Kelley, my work was about providing for my family and doing what I knew I could do well. After Kelley, I became very comfortable with saying, “work is what makes me feel fulfilled"; it’s the freedom to pursue what makes me happy and brings me joy. I know through Kelley I’ve become a stronger woman, wife, and mother. I couldn’t ask for anything more.