August 2023 Update: Johnson & Wales University enjoyed an incredibly fruitful 5-year partnership as the Official Education Partner of TD Garden and the Boston Bruins. This partnership officially ended in June 2023.
For the past year, Johnson & Wales University’s College of Online Education has been pioneering a new corporate partnership program that pairs companies with valuable education options and tuition discounts for their employees. To date, nine partners, who run the gamut from companies with a handful of staff to nearly 100,000 employees, have taken advantage of the benefit. In order to continue to provide the highest quality service to current and future partners and their employees, JWU Online has added a business development coordinator to our team.
Meet Brian Fernandes!
Here are three things to know about Brian: He’s an undergraduate alum of Johnson & Wales. He’s a former Wildcat basketball star (who scored 1,000-plus career points!). And he’s currently pursuing his MBA online through JWU.
His passion and dedication to JWU are clear. He has trusted the university with his education twice, and even worked in admissions helping prospective students follow their goals at JWU. So really, you could say that there is no better person to give partners an inside look to the university.
After working in online admissions at JWU, Brian transitioned to join Angelo Pitassi on the college’s business development team in October 2018. Brian’s primary role is to build long-term relationships with partners, which begins with working with the online admissions team to ensure each student enrolled has a positive experience. And, because Brian is currently getting his MBA online at JWU, he’s able to relate to students who may be new to taking online courses.
“I thoroughly understand and appreciate the time an effort it takes to seek a degree while working full-time,” he said. “My goal is to network and develop strategies that make our partners successful in the online classroom.”
Pairing Passion with Partnership
One of the things Brian is looking forward to most in his new role is being able to incorporate his personal passions into his partnership experiences. A 2006 graduate of Johnson & Wales’s Sports Management program and member of the university’s championship basketball team, Brian has professional experience working in the sports industry with the Boston Celtics and Gillette Stadium.
“Sports are my passion,” he said. “I’m excited to work on all partnerships, and it has been so rewarding to be involved in the recent university partnership with the Boston Bruins and TD Garden.”
Making the Commitment to Online Learning
According to Brian, the biggest hurdle to enrolling in an online program is just getting started. “I’ve been out of school for more than 10 years,” he explained. “Once you submit your first assignment and receive a grade, you begin to gain confidence.” From there, he said it becomes easier to meet your deadlines and balance your life.
These insights are just a few things he hopes to bring to JWU’s partners and employees.
“It’s my job to keep the lines of communication open to ensure that our partners are getting the resources they need,” he said. “Succeeding at online learning takes time and dedication, just like shooting a free throw.”
For more information about Corporate Partnerships at JWU, visit this page.