Five Under Five with Steven Pincus ’15
Our Five Under Five column features a Q&A with a Whitman School alumna/alumnus who graduated within the last five years. In this issue, meet Steven Pincus ’15 from Los Angeles. Pincus triple majored in entrepreneurship & emerging enterprises, management and marketing management, while delving into many on-campus opportunities. He served as a board member for the Entrepreneurship Club and Otto’s Army and worked alongside Whitman MBA students consulting for the New York State Science & Technology Law Center at the Syracuse University’s College of Law. Following graduation, Pincus worked in Boston as a senior associate for State Street Corporation’s client operations group and also served as a relationship consultant for the firm’s largest accounts and as a business analyst within the data governance division. Today, Pincus is a sales executive for a business intelligence performance software firm, spearheading client-facing efforts to migrate them to the cloud environment. He also helps the most strategic resellers as their account manager and has oversight of all direct customers in the Western U.S.
1. What factored into your decision to choose Syracuse University?
My high school and I were comparing university mottos. We agreed Syracuse University had one of the coolest mottos then and surely still now after coming to realize that a core embodiment of the college experience is displayed on our University seal: Suos Cultores Scientia Coronat — Knowledge Crowns Those Who Seek Her. If you approach an opportunity with a thirst to learn and grow, you can be rewarded tenfold. To me, that means being open to new experiences, like when this L.A. kid became familiar with novelties such as frozen freshly showered hair on the morning walk to class and how to best pack a snowball. Whitman was there to support my academic interests with an abundance of complementary majors enhanced by resources across campus and into the community.
2. Knowing what you know now, are there classes you wish you had taken?
Dozens more. I’m grateful for the Whitman curriculum requirements to take electives and introductory courses across campus and could have even seen myself pursuing a complementary degree that was more liberal arts minded. I had insightful professors at Maxwell, Newhouse, and Arts and Sciences and nearly took on an anthropology minor. In the long run, the experiential courses and time spent on projects through Whitman were thoroughly worthwhile. Learning how to best apply and approach consultative, client-facing experiences for actual business scenarios gave me a jump-start in applying classroom learning to the real world — from strategy through implementation with continued mirrored refinement. Taking a second supply chain or real estate class would have been neat, but the exciting new business analytics offerings would have taken the cake.
3. Can you describe the sense of pride and connection with being an Syracuse University alumnus?
As much as it was a part of the Syracuse experience for me, it goes beyond athletics and a common team to root for. (My fellow Otto’s Army board members won’t be too happy with me saying that.). Although separated by distance, it’s the unity of the shared intertwined Orange roots with alumni who came before and those who follow. I’ve had phenomenal discussions with other alumni about common experiences and memories, despite undertaking our coursework decades apart. I look forward to continuing to attend Whitman alumni events to connect and reconnect.
4. What do you do to keep balance in your life?
It seems that life is about finding the balance between a grounding routine (in part, out of necessity), yet trying to intertwine novel experiences throughout each day. Other than practicing my golf game with the extra time due to my softball team’s undefeated season cut short by the pandemic, I’ve been lucky to row and swim regularly and sometimes explore new canyon trails or bike paths. Cooking and baking special recipes for family and friends also gives me grounding, especially when they nosh on seconds.
5. Do you have any advice for current students?
Living on campus is in many ways a microcosm of our larger society. Go out of your way each semester to connect with a new club or get behind a cause you care for — even through senior year, as interests and people evolve and you’ll fold into your true self. Senior year appears quickly (especially after studying abroad), and you are forced to compile your pre-takeoff checklist to enter the workforce while squeezing in as many memories as you can in the whirl of it all. Be sure to prioritize time along the way to stop and smell the oranges.