Courtney Samuel

Courtney Samuel
Class Year: 
Job Title / Company: 
Performance Acceleration Lead, Target

Duke MEM in three words: Diverse, immersive, cultivating

Describe what you do in your current position.
I work alongside Target business partners to develop and execute enterprise programs that will ensure the success of the enterprise strategy and business financial and operational outcomes.

I also serve as a thought leader who partners with business owners to jointly define program objectives, tactics, and success measures, and to apply structured problem solving on programs.

How has your Duke MEM degree impacted your career so far?
I think my degree prepared me to enter more business strategy roles – versus business execution roles.

Since graduating, I’ve worked as a business analytics and retail strategy consultant, and now I’m helping a Fortune 50 company with its annual strategic priorities to stay competitive in the retail landscape. Without my MEM education, I might not have realized that that was the career transition I was looking for – or had the business background to effectively make that transition.

What did you like best about your MEM experience at Duke?
My favorite part was definitely being able to work so closely with people from so many different cultures, an experience I’d never had before. Personally and professionally, learning about other cultures through the people I met at Duke gave me new insight and was a lot of fun.

The program also offers a well-rounded assortment of classes, allowing students to learn more about the areas that interest them. That was one of the things I loved most.

Do you have any advice for students currently in the program?
I would suggest that current students keep an open mind during their time at Duke. You never know what can come from trying new things and meeting new people!

Is there anything you’d do differently during your time at Duke?
I wish I would have taken the competitive strategies course, but overall, I was very happy with my experiences!

What’s great about being a Duke MEM alumna?
Duke Blue Devils are everywhere, so it's a great network to be a part of!