Five Under Five: Saphyir Moody ’17
Our Five Under Five column features a Q&A with a Whitman School graduate of the last five years. In this issue, meet Saphyir Moody ’17, a native and current resident of Brooklyn, New York, who is putting her Whitman accounting degree to work as a compensation analyst for The Children’s Place. In this role, she analyzes market data within the retail industry and internally to ensure the company is paying employees fairly. The position allows Moody to blend her knack for data analytics and passion for people. Previously, she worked at Fox Corporation in talent acquisition after her first job post-Whitman at KPMG as a tax associate.
Did you have early influences who spurred your interest in business?
I decided to apply to Syracuse University after a college tour that I took in high school to a few universities in Upstate New York. I chose to apply because of the student life programs, sports teams and the beautiful campus, of course. I was accepted to over 20 schools, but after review of Syracuse University’s generous financial aid package, I made the final decision. Through the Office of Multicultural Advancement and other on-campus interactions, I found mentors in Whitman who advised me during my first-year. I decided to transfer to Whitman from the College of Visual and Performing Arts. I realized early on that no matter what field you go into, you must understand business, which is why I ultimately decided on Whitman.
How do you feel Whitman prepared you to be a professional and/or to meet the requirements of your position?
Whitman’s programs are conditioned for you to work in teams, which mimics the fields that we work in as alumni. Most everything in the business world is a team effort and group-oriented, especially when working in global companies. The diverse makeup of corporate America is ever-changing, so having had experiences working in groups of diverse individuals was helpful.
Are there classes or experiences from Whitman that you especially draw from in your career?
The courses at Whitman allow you to think outside of the box and transform your thinking into an entrepreneurial mindset. The foundational management and accounting courses definitely set me up for success in the real world. The capstone course for seniors prepares you to establish a business and develop invaluable pitching skills. No matter what line of business you are in, you need to know how to present.
Can you describe the sense of pride and connection that comes with being a Syracuse/Whitman alumna?
Orange pride is truly special. We have an extraordinary alumni network in most large cities, and, even if your job interviewer didn’t go to Syracuse University, he/she probably knows someone who did within the company. Having Syracuse University on my resume has gotten me interviews, opportunities and into rooms with highly accomplished individuals. It’s a well-respected alma mater, and I’m happy to be a part of the alumni family.
Do you have any advice for current Whitman students?
Network. It’s not just what you learn in the classroom or in a textbook; it’s also about who you know. People will always remember how you helped them or how you made them feel, so be kind and genuine. Join clubs and mentorship programs and take advantage of any opportunity to develop leadership skills. Remember that your education is an investment, so take full advantage of all that the campus has to offer.