School of Business Administration

Power couple devotes time and talent to mentor business students

icon of a calendarJune 18, 2021

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Power couple devotes time and talent to mentor business students

As leaders in their communities and organizations, Cynthia and Matt Karrandja are a power duo. Professionally and personally, both are committed to helping others identify and reach their career goals. Through their work with the ACHIEVE program, Oakland University business students benefit from the Karrandja’s dedication and expertise.

An OU CAS ’97 alumnus, Matt is a tremendous advocate for the School of Business Administration’s ACHIEVE program. He has steadily increased his involvement with the program since summer 2015 when he first participated in the Networking with Professionals workshop at the 2990 level. Matt also seeks Oakland University graduates to fill career positions. His commitment to Oakland University extends to the School of Engineering and Computer Science and as well as a leadership role with the Oakland University Alumni Association.

“Most people don’t realize how important it is to network. Most jobs are based on networking. I try to convey that message to students, that this might be one of the most important classes you take in college,” Matt said.

Professionally, as Vice President of Sales for LER TechForce, Matt is dedicated to developing and maintaining relationships to match technical talent to opportunities. He also gives back to the larger community as Executive Director, Career Ministries of Michigan, and as General Employees Civil Service Commissioner for Shelby Township. Through his work, he demonstrates his sincere support the full-cycle of career development from emerging to experienced talent, while being the voice for the unemployed, underemployed and for those in career transitions.

An ACHIEVE volunteer since fall 2016, Cynthia brings a natural ability to coach others to reach their potential as well as a genuine passion for helping people discover career success. She has worked with ACHIEVE students as a mock interviewer at the 3990 level and coaching students in the Networking with Professionals workshop for 2990. Generous with her time, she often offers to conduct virtual mock interviews after traditional business hours to accommodate working students. In all, Cynthia has devoted a remarkable 50+ hours of mock interview support.

“It is an honor to support the ACHIEVE program at the OU School of Business,” Cynthia said. “This extraordinary program ensures our Grizzlies are set up for success.”

In addition to her work with ACHIEVE and raising a family with Matt, Cynthia serves as the Senior Talent and Training Manager for Centric Solutions Group LLC while pursuing a Human Resources Development degree at OU.

“There is no doubt, the ACHIEVE students who engage with Matt and Cynthia walk away more confident and prepared for their future,” said Andrea Mill, ACHIEVE program manager. “We could not deliver this experience to our students without the amazing volunteers like Cynthia and Matt.”

The ACHIEVE program was founded in 2008 by the Professional and Career Development Task Force to provide Oakland School of Business students with practical knowledge and skills to help them transition from their academic studies to business careers after graduation. Since its founding, 16,938 students have successfully completed all three courses in the program.

The program is so unique and successful in connecting students to the business community, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International, the accrediting agency that oversees schools of business and accounting nationwide, recognized ACHIEVE as a best practice.

Learn more about the ACHIEVE program.

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