With a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration & International Commerce in hand, and years of work experience in different multinational Freight Forwarding companies in Brazil, Victor Navarro felt it was the right time to realize a lifelong dream: to further his education in the USA.
“The plan was clear and well defined. I was setting out for one year of intense academic immersion, followed by another one year of experiencing the American business environment. At that time, those were the two most critical elements that, in my mind, would contribute to pursue a successful career once I returned to São Paulo, my hometown in Brazil.”
Little did Victor know that his hard work would result in much greater opportunities coming his way during what became a nearly 7-year journey in the USA (and still counting).
“A course at UC San Diego Extension was the perfect way to begin my initial two-year plan,” he said. “The rich curriculum of the Business Management Program, the diverse atmosphere with students and professors from all over the world, combined with the possibility to extend my stay in the USA for a one-year work permit (OPT), made it a very appealing opportunity to start chasing my dream.”
“From the very first quarter of classes, the interactions with other cultures and people from all walks of life, as well as the guidance offered by the experienced UCSD staff, proved to be invaluable and allowed me to gain a broader perspective on life and business in general. Also, the campus is absolutely incredible. It allows for a truly American experience, like most of us internationals grow up watching only in the movies.”
During the second quarter of classes, Navarro completed an internship at one of the biggest banks in the world – UBS Wealth Management, in La Jolla. “That gave me a sense of American business practices, and more importantly, it helped me build confidence to create future job opportunities. It was during my internship at UBS that I felt there could be more to my experience abroad than I originally anticipated.”
Shortly after graduating from the UC San Diego Extension, Victor was offered an entry level position at a start-up company, AP Wireless. During his nearly five years of service at this firm, he used the skills he learned in Business Management classes to help grow the company into the leading cell site lease investment company in the world. “It was the perfect opportunity to use the OPT visa and learn more in depth about American business practices,” he said. “With hard work and diligence, my entry-level position quickly expanded in to a leadership role, and not too long after, into an offer for full sponsorship of a H1B visa.” From there, Victor held different leadership positions at the firm and helped it establish operations in multiple countries, including his native Brazil, Canada, among others.
Together with UC San Diego Extension Business Program coordinators, Navarro helped start and foster a successful partnership with AP Wireless Infrastructure Partners, which resulted in dozens of students from the Business programs being offered an internship and/or job opportunity at that firm, since 2010.
“One of the most gratifying opportunities as a former UC San Diego student was to help create job opportunities for other students from the program, and work alongside them in meaningful projects.”
“All in all, UC San Diego was a vital stepping stone for my career development and overall life in the USA. I would recommend the Business Management programs to anyone seeking a multi-cultural academic environment with highly intelligent peers.”
Nowadays Victor works as a Management Consultant for companies in various industries, and devotes part of his time consulting for other students and international professionals who desire a similar path towards a successful career in the USA.