Graduation Year: 2011
Major: Double Major in Russian Language and Literature / Economics
Why did you choose Russian as your major?
Being born and raised in Russia, I felt it was important to continue learning about my heritage. I have always known that Russian literature is highly regarded around the world. I never seemed to have the time to actually sit down and read the books. So, when I saw the opportunity to read some of the most important books as part of my education, I knew that it was the right thing to do.
What did you like most about it?
The variety of books, stories and themes that were covered in my classes. We covered Tolstoy’s Magnum Opus, War and Peace, Zamyatin’s dystopian novel We, as well as diaries and books dedicated to the blockade of Leningrad, a dark time during the WW2. I was able to learn not just literature, but the history and culture that shaped the country that I was born in.
What is your current position, what do you, and what do you enjoy most about it?
I currently work at PricewaterhouseCoopers in an advisory role. I work with large financial institutions to improve their operations. I enjoy the ability to help implement the company’s strategic vision and see it come to life.
What was your first job after Rutgers and how did you get it?
My first job out of school was to work for a bank in their IT department, helping out with a major system conversion.
How did you move from that first job to your current position?
The old saying is true: “It is not what you know, it is who you know.” I was lucky to meet great people who helped me out along the way. They recommended me for opportunities that I probably would not have been be able to get on my own, but was ultimately successful at.
Looking back, what classes or experiences at Rutgers would you point to as contributing to your successes?
Understanding the psychology of people in their relation to their economic decisions greatly helped me navigate my career as well provided me a better understanding of the world around me. Russian literature, especially Dostoevsky, is extremely useful for self-reflection and comes up surprisingly often in interviews (it helped me land a job once).
What advice do you have for our current Arts and Sciences students?
Enjoy your time at Rutgers. Do the things that you really want to do and take the classes that you really want to take.