Amanda Sopata, 2013
Hometown: Newtown, PA
Previous Education: The Pennsylvania State University, bachelor's degree in health, policy and administration and double minor in business and labor and industrial relations
Employment Experience Before Duquesne: AmeriCorps, Myasthenia Gravis Association of Western Pennsylvania, City of Pittsburgh's Department of Parks and Recreation Office of Special Events and Community Affairs, Clear Channel Entertainment, and BNY Mellon
Current Position: BNY Mellon, Vice President & Public Affairs Manager
Amanda, a recipient of the James J. Byrne Award for responsible leadership, chose the Duquesne MBA because it was designed for a working business professional who wants to be a responsible leader, offering flexible scheduling, a location convenient to downtown Pittsburgh and further preparing her to make a positive difference through her work. Here is Amanda's story:
Following graduation from Penn State, I spent a year as an Americorps Volunteer in Service to America at Easter Seals in central Pennsylvania. Following this, I moved to the Pittsburgh area and became the Development Coordinator for the Myasthenia Gravis Association of Western Pennsylvania (MGA), where I coordinated many successful fundraising events including the 20th annual MGA/Kent Tekulve Celebrity Golf Scramble and A Tea with Tony Randall.
Following my time with MGA, I obtained a position as a Program Coordinator with the City of Pittsburgh's Department of Parks and Recreation Office of Special Events and Community Affairs and eventually became the office manager. I also served as the Assistant Race Director for the Richard S. Caliguiri City of Pittsburgh Great Race during its 30th anniversary year, when race registration increased by more than 40 percent to 10,000 runners.
In 2008, I joined BNY Mellon as a member of the Global Philanthropy and Employee Programs team where I am responsible for the development, management, planning and administration of a variety of global and regional programs and events. BNY Mellon and its employees have contributed more than $100 million to the communities around the world over the past three years. The employee program has grown significantly since its launch in 2008. In 2013 alone, BNY Mellon employees around the world volunteered more than 100,000 hours. We also have the MVPs, an organization that brings together BNY Mellon retirees in the Pittsburgh area, who volunteer around 20,000 hours per year.
I had always wanted to get my MBA and, with the support of BNY Mellon's tuition assistance program, Duquesne's flexible MBA program and my family, friends, managers and colleagues, I was able to attain this goal. I've been able to use a lot of what I learned at school at night during the day at work, it sharpened my skills and it gave me a great opportunity to network and meet new friends.