Featured Alumni

Caleb Schleder

Caleb SchlederDegree/Graduation year: B.S., Marketing, 2011
Current Employer: AGCO
Title: Marketing Representative

The main aspect of marketing that really drew me in was the fact that marketing is the “glue” of a business. Marketing is the department that facilitates every department of a business in order for that company to be successful. The marketing department is also the voice of the customer. The customer and the business have different needs and wants, and I love the fact that my job is trying to lobby for customers so they get the product and service they want.

Bradley’s marketing program has been extremely beneficial in the early stages of my career and I am positive that it will continue to help me as I drive further down my career path. The market research class at Bradley has been the most valuable course in terms of helping my career. The hands-on research and application that I learned in that class has allowed me to take on projects that other college graduates would have had difficulty implementing. Also, sales role-playing exercises gave me an edge because I can communicate with customers effectively and I am able to adapt more quickly than others to customers’ changing needs.

When I tell people about the relationships and support I have built at Bradley, most people are astonished. They are amazed that a university can take such an interest in its students. From the administrative workers to the faculty, all are very supportive and enjoy hearing stories from my adventures. It is hard to find a faculty that will support you after graduation, but at Bradley, the faculty takes a genuine interest in your life.

Derek Oddo

Derek OddoDegree/Graduation year: B.S., Marketing, 2009
Current Employer: Gainlight Studios, Inc.
Title: Owner

My Bradley marketing degree has had a tremendous impact on my ability to run a business in the creative and marketing landscape upon graduation. As a self-taught graphic artist, it has allowed me the ability to bridge the gap between creative ideas and business applications to understand the true purpose behind a communication piece. On a daily basis, I tie back to the education and experience I had as a student on the Hilltop, only now I get paid to share this information with others. 

The Bradley marketing degree has helped me tremendously in terms of service to my community. In the Peoria area and beyond, the instant notoriety of attending one of the top private Midwest colleges in the nation is immediate, but having the ability to work directly with companies in the community helped me understand the importance of giving back. Since the start of our company, we make a big effort to give back. Be it donation of services to programs like A.R.R.O, providing internship experience to students or networking with other businesses towards a common goal, the importance of service to your community was stressed in the classroom through real experience. 

Paul Jacob

Paul JacobDegree/Graduation year: B.S., Marketing, 2007
Current Employer: Brewers Distributing Company
Title: President

Obtaining a marketing degree from Bradley University was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Bradley’s Department of Marketing provided me the tools necessary to develop a sustainable competitive advantage in the marketplace, become a better leader, and become a better corporate citizen.

During my time with Bradley, I was taught real-life, actionable marketing strategies that enabled me to employ new processes and ideas that have yielded significant, positive results.  The programs offered are facilitated by some of the most talented and knowledgeable instructors with whom I have ever had the pleasure to interact.  Most of them have real-world experience and draw from this uncommon asset to provide a springboard for students to expand their understanding of every facet of business marketing.

I think the most valuable lesson I took away from my experience at Bradley was not only to recognize and adapt to an evolving environment, but to gain the insight to become a visionary and predict change before it occurs.

The Bradley Experience is something that’s hard to describe, hence the term. You become part of a family. When you first set foot onto the campus, you immediately begin to feel a sense of pride. You start to “play up” to a higher level, and you begin to realize a potential in yourself that you never thought you had. The attitude is pervasive throughout the University, from the student body, to the instructors, to the administrative team. We all share in the idea of community; we all want to play an integral part.

Post graduation, Bradley remains a very important part of my life. I continue to visit the campus, and many of the professors who were so instrumental in shaping my leadership style and positively influencing my career. I often call on them for advice and they ungrudgingly offer their perspectives. They have an open-door policy for their students and this attitude carries on long after the tuition is gone, because they appreciate their students as much as we appreciate them.

Paula Perrone

Paula PerroneDegree/Graduation year: B.S., Marketing, 2009
Current Employer: Target
Title: Executive Team Leader – Sales Floor

Bradley's reputation as providing academic excellence is definitely recognized in the Target community.  One question I always receive from peers and supervisors is, "Where did you attend college?"  After stating that I attended Bradley University and received a marketing degree, the person always congratulates me, noting the wonderful opportunity I received.

Though my focus was in marketing, at Bradley I received a well-rounded education in accounting, management, and other areas of business.  Having this knowledge has given me the opportunity to "think out of the box" and influence other ideas and areas of my profession that are not specific to marketing.

My Bradley experience taught me about the significant influence businesses have on consumer's buying behaviors, but also how we as consumers can influence a business.   With the knowledge I’ve gained in marketing, I take every chance I get to participate in market research by responding to surveys and feedback sessions.  Hopefully, my voice will help to influence the products and services businesses provide consumers.

Tyler Goodyear

Tyler GoodyearDegree/Graduation year: B.S., Marketing
Current Employer: ConAgra Foods
Title: Key Account Manager

Bradley University marketing professors know the importance of team work in the “real world,” so they construct challenging group assignments that allow students to grow as effective team members.

Using the sales skills I acquired at Bradley, I immediately set myself apart from my peers during the first year of my professional career. Within two and a half years, I achieved two promotions. Thanks to Bradley, I consistently make positive contributions to team projects in my current position at ConAgra Foods.

Employers have come to expect this kind of potential from Bradley graduates. This is why Fortune 500 companies come to campus seeking Bradley talent. These multinational companies know the value of a Bradley marketing degree, and that creates an array of job opportunities for Bradley students.