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Service Systems

Alumni Spotlight

Alumni Spotlight

S. Napier

Recognized by Advertising Age as one of the most influential women leaders in industry history, Ms. Napier is an entrepreneur and business expert with more than 30 years of experience building creative agencies. As founder and CEO of Partners + Napier, Ms. Napier helms a nationally recognized creative agency with 115 employees in Rochester, NY, New York City and San Francisco. The agency has a long track record of driving national and global accounts including Constellation Brands, BMW Financial Services, Delta Private Jets and others. Under Ms. Napier’s leadership, the Partners + Napier brand expanded to New York City in 2012 with the launch of Partners NYC (PNYC), a brand strategy and creative agency that brings together a team of “expats” from the industry’s top agencies. Ms. Napier is also one of the very few women advertising leaders to build and sell an agency. In 2011, she led Partners + Napier’s acquisition by Project: WorldWide, a leading independent network of brand, experiential and activation agencies. Ms. Napier now serves on the Global Strategic Leadership Team, helping to guide this modern “un-holding company” as it continues to make waves and headlines.  Sharon received her MS, Service Leadership and Innovation degree in 2004.

A link to a speech she gave to the Rochester Institute of Technology and RIT community can be found here,


M. Vaz


M. Vaz, an Indian citizen, was raised in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. She selected RIT because of its reputation and because the courses offered in the HRD program are current and relevant to the global HR market. According to Vaz, courses such as Human Capital Strategies, Human Performance Management Practices and Global HR Practices, were especially valuable and marketable.

Upon graduation, she landed a job with RIT’s Human Resources Department and was later transferred to RIT’s newest international campus in the UAE, RIT Dubai, where she is responsible for recruitment and admissions. Vaz has started an RIT alumni chapter in Dubai and was recently honored with the RIT School of Hospitality and Service Management International Alumni Award.

I. Deretic


I. Deretic is a citizen of Croatia, where she completed her undergraduate studies at RIT’s American College of Management and Technology (ACMT). Her positive experience at ACMT, where she gained the knowledge and preparation required to be successful in a work setting, led her to pursue graduate level studies on the RIT campus.

Deretic feels her studies in the HRD program have been enriched by the opportunity to meet so many different people from all over the world. She says, “Being a part of RIT means being a part of the global world, and I know that a degree from RIT will help me in my future HR career in whatever part of the world I end up in."

K. Teeter


K. Teeter was recently promoted from a Product Support Specialist to a Supervisor at Paychex. She believed that a master’s degree would allow her to expand her knowledge of the human resources field and selected RIT’s HRD program for its versatility. As a full-time employee, she was concerned with maintaining work-life balance, and RIT’s online and evening classes have allowed her to achieve that balance.

Teeter attributes her recent promotion to a supervisory position to the knowledge and skills she has gained in her studies. Teeter states that she has been able to immediately apply what she learns in her classes to the work setting, and reports that interactions with fellow students and faculty, whether on campus or online, has enriched her learning experience.

S. Garrison


S. Garrison, a native of Rochester, was interested in a master’s level degree to be more marketable in the HR field. Garrison selected RIT because of the reputation of the HRD program and is more than satisfied with her decision. She reports she has had positive experiences with her professors and is pleased to be able to immediately apply what she has learned in her coursework to her position as an HR Assistant with an architectural firm.

Garrison has a passion for the Human Resource field and says, “I don't just see myself as having a job in HR, I see myself as having a career and the HRD program at RIT is an important part of my success in my career.”

A. Missamou


A. Missamou comes to RIT from the Republic of the Congo, where he received a Fulbright Foreign Student scholarship. The Fulbright Foreign Student Program brings citizens of other countries to the United States for Master's or Ph.D. level study at U.S. universities. The standards are very high for the Fulbright scholarship, according to Missamou, making the process long and rigorous.

He was drawn to RIT's HRD program, in part, because the professors are experienced professionals from the field. Missamou became interested in HR while working as a translator-consultant for an HR manager at a major hotel in the Republic of the Congo. Here he saw first-hand the impact of employee development on business profits. Missamou reports that his coursework to-date is stimulating and rewarding, especially the various group activities and interactions.

R. Robbins


R. Robbins graduated from the HRD program in 2007 and is currently employed as an HR Assistant at a local non-profit organization. Robbins was drawn to RIT's HRD program because of its focus on practical application. She believes her internship, which ran concurrently with her schooling, was the perfect compliment to her classroom teachings as it offered her the opportunity to witness classroom theories in practice. The diverse student body in the classroom provided her with the opportunity to expand her knowledge of global HR practices. Robbins says the combination of her degree and experience has positioned her to reach her career goal of HR Manager by the age of 29.

O. Demid


O. Demid, a citizen of Mongolia, was one of only three finalists out of a pool of 200 applicants who were accepted into the Fulbright program from her home country. The prestigious Fulbright Scholarship program aims to increase understanding between the peoples of the U.S. and other countries through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills.

She most recently served as Head of the Education and Training Department for the Confederation of Mongolian Trade Unions. Odontuya chose RIT's HRD program because it focuses on the connection between the Return On Investment (ROI) of a company and its human capital. She also appreciates the opportunity to learn how HR is practiced in the U.S. Odontuya hopes to work as an HR consultant after graduation, to share the knowledge gained in her studies here.

M. Turcotte


M. Turcotte comes to R.I.T. for what she describes as career enhancement. Having worked as an HR practitioner for many years, she is looking to refresh and fine-tune her skill set as well as keep abreast of the latest in the HR field. Turcotte was drawn to RIT because as an undergraduate here she realizes the value of RIT's reputation. Turcotte feels that the interaction among students creates a meaningful learning environment and the state of the art content included in the HRD program will serve her well in her next HR position.