Bill Brady, MBA '23
Bill Brady has never been one to back down from a challenge. After studying accounting at Miami University’s Farmer School of Business in Ohio, he wanted to land a highly sought-after role at PwC. To describe hiring at PwC as competitive would be an understatement; it’s one of the top four accounting firms in the world. Despite this intense competition, Bill applied – and got the job.
PwC hired Bill shortly after his graduation from Miami University in 2015. He then worked in finance and accounting-related roles until late 2022. After years of perfecting his craft, Bill started taking on new responsibilities – some of which he found himself unfamiliar with.
“As I gained more consulting project experience and started working in other areas outside of finance and accounting, I realized that I had a little bit of a gap in terms of formal training in other areas like supply chain, marketing and corporate strategy,” Bill said.
He wanted to continue to grow in his career at PwC, and decided that to do so, he would need to embark on a new adventure: pursuing a Michigan Ross Weekend MBA.
To me, getting an MBA was a way to address those formal education gaps while also continuing to expand my network.
Bill decided to pursue his MBA at Michigan Ross because of the many resources and networking opportunities available to students and alums. He also liked that the Weekend MBA Program gave him the flexibility to continue working at PwC while he studied.
The thing he loved most about the program, however, was something he didn’t even know he was looking for until he started his classes.
I was blown away at the accessibility of our professors. I assumed that, given the size of Michigan, you would probably just be another name on a page, and access to teachers might be difficult, but we got cell phone numbers and personal emails.
“There are only 24 hours in a day, and the weekend program forces you to maximize your use of every single one. Even when most other business professionals’ days were over, I'd have teachers that would respond late at night while my semester’s teams were working. I was very impressed,” Bill said. “That was probably my biggest positive surprise within the first week. It was like, ‘Oh wow, I can actually communicate and collaborate with my professors in a meaningful way.’”
Bill quickly made a name for himself at Michigan Ross and got involved in multiple extracurricular activities on top of his studies and full-time job. He joined the Private Equity Club and the Weekend MBA Board, of which he is now the president.
Beyond his studies and extracurricular activities, Bill also took part in experiences like the Sanger Leadership Crisis Challenge and the Weekend MBA Multidisciplinary Action Project . He says MAP was his favorite experience at Ross because it gave him and his classmates an opportunity to provide critical insights and recommendations that directly impacted their sponsor’s business.
For his MAP project, Bill and his group members helped do a market study for a pharmaceutical start-up in the dermatology space.
“We had a ton of client and third party interaction. We did hours of interviews with academics, dermatologists, researchers, and venture capital funds,” Bill said. “We really acted as client advisors, which made the project so much more real, and we all had a personal investment because we knew how important our work was to our sponsor.”
Bill’s experience and the things he learned in and out of the classroom paid off quickly. In 2022, he moved into the Private Equity Value Creation group within PwC’s Deals practice, focusing on operational due diligence and value-creation opportunities related to mergers and acquisitions. He credits his experiences at Ross with helping him move forward in his career.
“I would say the experiences and the courses I've taken have absolutely assisted me on projects that I've done at work,” Bill said. “A lot of my work is in operations and being able to apply concepts such as production lead time optimization, supply chain resiliency theories, and inventory management. It was almost serendipitous how in sync the coursework at Ross was with some of the conversations I'd be having at my job.”
Bill’s advice to incoming students is to take advantage of all the opportunities available at Ross.
“There are endless resources at Ross and across campus. And there are so many opportunities for you to go out of your comfort zone, like the Crisis Challenge, investment challenges, the Sanger Leadership Center, the MBA board, the list goes on,” Bill said. “At the end of this, you will walk away with at least one powerful experience that you can say, Michigan Ross made me a more competitive professional.”