“When my life is ideal, I am ________.” That open-ended phrase, from the book “The Passion Test” was the impetus for Kyle Trusch ‘22 M.S. to make a change. His answer? “When my life is ideal, I am helping others understand how they can use their passions to create businesses.”
At the time, it was 2020, and he was working in corporate accounting at Raytheon Technologies in Connecticut, even though he had majored in entrepreneurship as an undergrad at Quinnipiac University. Work was hectic given the added stress of the pandemic and some workplace changes, leaving Trusch feeling uncertain about his career.
“I think if you asked what the exact opposite of entrepreneurship is, corporate accounting would be about as correct an answer as you’ll find,” he said. “I realized that I wanted to get into teaching, and I knew I’d need a master’s degree to do that. So, I started looking at master’s degree programs. Whitman’s online Master of Science in Entrepreneurship kept popping up in my search, and, after talking to the admissions office, I knew this would be the right choice for me.”
“At the time, I didn’t quite know where my life was going, and I was feeling like I had lost the passion I had had for entrepreneurship when was in college, as well as the drive to get the most out of my career,” he adds. “Looking back on my experiences in Whitman’s program, I can confidently say that my passion for entrepreneurship has been reignited, and I’m very excited to see where it takes me.”
At the age of 24, he was one of the youngest in his cohort in the online program, but he found it to be a great opportunity to work with a diverse group of people, some of whom had decades of experience in their respective fields. The highlight of his online degree, however, was not only attending his graduation on-campus but being selected to give the commencement address to his class at the 2022 convocation ceremony.
“Pursuing an online degree worked out well for me, but it was certainly great to attend graduation and have the chance to meet my professors and classmates in person,” he says. “Being selected as the commencement speaker was a little bit of a step outside of my comfort zone, but opportunities like this don’t come around that often. Having the opportunity to stand up in front of 1,000 classmates, friends and families is something I’ll never forget. It was one of the proudest moments of my life and the perfect culmination of my time at Syracuse University and the Whitman School.”
With a renewed confidence and a master’s degree in hand, Trusch remained at Raytheon Technologies, and today not only has a new position as a senior analyst in the benefits finance department but also a newly energized perspective on his career. His master’s degree from Whitman has already offered him new opportunities, as he recently added teaching to his resume as an adjunct professor at his undergraduate alma mater, Quinnipiac University’s School of Business.
“Because of my master’s degree in entrepreneurship from Whitman, I was given the opportunity to start teaching in the fall of 2021 – much earlier than I thought it would happen,” he says. “Now, after two full semesters of leading an introductory business course, I can confidently say that I am, indeed, incredibly passionate about teaching.”
“Taking ‘The Passion Test’ a few years ago pointed me in the direction of my online degree at Whitman and ultimately helped me combine my current career with the chance to explore other opportunities at the same time.” he adds. “I’m excited to see where it all might lead.”
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