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Business Student Lands Job in Competitive Program

2010 Roger Sessions Memorial Composition Award winner, Relix Peņa

Over the last six years, Natalia Pecora has gone from learning to speak English to landing a full-time job with an exclusive Baker Hughes leadership training program.

A native of São Paulo, Brazil, Pecora came to the United States in 2004 to learn English at a language specialization school. After a brief stop at Houston Community College, she transferred to the University of St. Thomas. She will graduate from UST in December 2010 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in finance.

 “The number of international students at UST, as well as diverse students with different backgrounds amazed me,” Pecora said. “At UST, you can have a variety of different perceptions and personalities in a small community. The UST staff was always helpful and they understood my  needs as an international student.”

During her studies at UST, Dr. Shahram Taj, endowed chair in marketing and management, alerted her to an internship opportunity at Baker Hughes. That internship turned into a promising career in the Baker Hughes’ Global Supply Chain Rotational Program.

“Not only did Dr. Taj encourage me to send my résumé to Baker Hughes, he helped me better understand what I was learning in my internship,” Pecora said. “My UST business professors spent a lot of time outside the classroom helping me individually.”

The three-year Supply Chain Rotational program, which prepares participants for future leadership positions, selects only four employees from its offices in the United States.  Pecora said she is proud to be the first woman and first St. Thomas student to be admitted to the program, which largely draws from UT and Texas A&M graduates with backgrounds in supply chain management and engineering.

“I have worked really hard,” Pecora said.”The fact that I got into this program was really due to my performance in my internship.”

Pecora said her international background and fluency in Portuguese, Italian, Spanish and English makes her an asset to the global company. Program participants rotate through the supply chain departments and are required to spend at least six months working in one of Baker Hughes’ main international offices.