Student Perspective: #HumansOfMcIntire- Different Stories Behind the Suit

Allie Hall, fourth-year student & McIntire Ambassador

We have all seen them around Grounds: the students in suits entering Rouss & Robertson Halls. However, while their business attire may seem like a homogeneous blur, it is important to note that each of these suited students is unique. There are many paths to the doors of McIntire and getting a valuable business education experience. To highlight this, below are three students one may find in the halls of Rouss & Robertson, each with their own path and program in McIntire.

First, meet Reilly Sheehy, a fourth-year enrolled in the B.S. in Commerce Program who is also majoring in Spanish. Reilly serves as a testament to the fact that McIntire students are able to get a wonderful foundation in business while also pursuing academic interests in other schools. Below, Reilly describes his experience of how double majoring outside of McIntire is not only possible, but has also added to his education:

“At first I thought I was facing an either/or option with majoring in Commerce or Spanish. I had heard that I would not have the time to complete all of my requirements. However, my advisers informed me that a majority of Commerce coursework was last year, so now in fourth year I have time to concentrate on Spanish. McIntire advisers are exceptionally good at helping you accomplish all of your academic goals. What I have found is that Commerce complemented my other major really well, because it contextualized my cultural background in a business light. Especially given the nature of McIntire’s global marketing and IT coursework, it was really interesting to incorporate my cultural perspective into analytics solutions.”

Beyond the undergraduate route, students interested in business also may pursue an M.S. in Commerce. Current graduate student Erin Caubo graduated from UVA’s College of Arts & Sciences last May and is now studying marketing and management in McIntire’s M.S. in Commerce Program, which is distinctive in that it places students in a classroom of peers with interesting and unique backgrounds. Of her experience, Erin commented:

“The M.S. in Commerce Program is strengthening my quantitative and qualitative business skills so that I can use my undergraduate degree in a commerce-related field. I value the opportunity to interact with students from a variety of backgrounds, each of whom brings a unique and meaningful perspective to the table.”

Another path to McIntire is to simply take a class in Commerce. Leigh Engel is currently pursuing an interdisciplinary major in the College while also taking McIntire’s Promotions class (fondly called “Promo”). This yearlong class centers on preparing for the American Advertising Federation’s National Student Advertising Competition. To prepare, Promo students are assigned a real client (this year’s client is Ocean Spray Cranberries) and work on crafting an original campaign to present at the national competition. This class is open to Commerce students as well as non-Commerce students like Leigh. Leigh describes what initially interested her in this path to McIntire, and how the class has added to her academic pursuit:

“Initially I was interested in the “Promotions” class because of the people. I heard it was a class full of passionate, smart, and creative individuals, and I wanted to be a part of that. However, I have found that I have not only learned from my peers but also developed tangible business skills that may enhance my education. For example, I have learned how to approach and answer broad questions like how to do a competitor analysis. While I have learned this new business perspective, I feel that I am also able to bring my own outside experiences and contribute in a valuable way with my classmates.”

McIntire is not a one-way street. With so many options to get a business education through the School, every student is able to find a path that fits with their interests and goals. To learn more about the programs above, as well as the other wonderful business programs at McIntire, be sure to explore the website or visit the McIntire admissions office in Rouss & Robertson.

– Allie Hall, McIntire Ambassador


Allie is a fourth-year Commerce student studying Marketing and Information Technology with a track in Global Commerce. Previously, Allie spent a semester abroad during her third year at ESADE Business School in Barcelona. Allie also serves McIntire as a member of Commerce Council and Women’s Business Forum. She’s a self-described foodie and is making her way through all of Charlottesville’s best restaurants.