Listen to the interview (approx. 48 min.) or download it.
Graduated in 2011 with a major in Music Business. Principal instrument: bass guitar.
Position: Production Line Supervisor at Anheuser-Busch (Becks). As a management trainee, Jack is rotating through different positions in the large brewery. In his current role, Jack primarily supervises almost 40 people on the bottling line, but he also does quality checks, analyzes processes and does projects designed to increase efficiency.
Overview: After graduation, Jack moved home to Chicago. Unable to find a local job in music publishing, Jack got a commission-only job selling insurance. He hoped it would lead to a job in finance, but the pay was low and it was clear that this was a dead end. After a couple of years he got a somewhat better but still not-great job as a customer service rep. at a corporate benefits firm. Meanwhile, Jack became romantically involved with a German woman and when she moved back to Bremen, Germany he decided some months later to follow her there.
Arriving in Germany in 2014, Jack wanted to get a Masters in Business, though his classes needed to be in English. The closest thing he could find was Jacobs University’s Masters in International Logistics, Management and Engineering (The program has changed slightly since his time.). Tuition was very low, so he went there. Breweries were major local employers, so Jack focused his academic work on breweries. He got an internship program halfway through his masters program, and having done well at that had his current job lined up when he graduated in 2016.
You can see Jack’s LinkedIn profile here.
Choice Quotes: “I enjoyed beer in college, then I met my German girlfriend I got back into drinking beer. I tried many craft beers, talked and learned about beer, and so forth. Then I moved to Germany, the Mecca of beer!”
“I once saw graffiti at Berklee that read “Keep your chin up.’ and it’s so true! There will be tough times where you’re not sure where you’re going, but just keep going and believe that at some point things will get better they will be. Keep applying for better things–you might face rejection or go down false paths, but eventually it’ll work out.”
“I’m happy that I studied logistics. Logistics is more than just transportation–supply chains are extremely important and applicable to many different businesses.”
“At Berklee, I liked playing jazz, and the general atmosphere of Berklee taught me to improvise well. Taking those improvisational skills into life has helped me think on my feet and adapt to change.”
Jack at work. “” I like working with people in the packaging department. While I don’t have a technical background, it’s really interesting to see the machines and learn the processes.”
Jack with some friends, and beer he helped brew and bottle.
“I hated selling insurance because I didn’t fully believe in the product. But with beer I love the product and am passionate about it! I like that we’re making this beer that’s going around the world and will be enjoyed by many people, and I feel good about working in the industry.”
Jack with his girlfriend. “I moved to Germany to be with her, which was a gamble. But since that move, I got my Masters, my career got on track, and she and I are still together. The gamble paid off!”
See the full index of successful Berklee alumni.