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Erica Kontson, MSEM '19

Product Engineer
Little Sparrows Technologies

Undergraduate University: Penn State University
Degree and Major: B.S. in Biomedical Engineering
Work Experience before Tufts: Integration & Testing Specialist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Where were you in your career and what drove your decision to go back to school?

When I applied to the MSEM program, I was fairly early in my career - I had about 3 years of work experience. I work at a very small startup and I had been gaining technical expertise in my current position. I realized that pursuing an advanced degree would broaden my skill set and business acumen so I could help my current company as we grow.

Why did you choose to pursue a M.S. in Engineering Management at Tufts?

I really liked the cohort aspect of the Tufts MSEM program. When I went to the Info Session, the faculty seemed very inviting and invested in the program and their students. The curriculum lined up well with my career goals and the Gordon Institute has a great alumni network and reputation so I knew it would be beneficial for many years beyond graduation.

How have you been able to apply aspects of the MSEM curriculum at work?

I have a better understanding of the marketing and financial side of my company. During my second semester of the MSEM program, my team and I even decided to use my company for our business strategy project. This allowed me to expand my role outside of engineering and tackle a serious and relevant business development project.


Favorite MSEM course so far:
New Product Development

What scientific or engineering innovation would you like to see in the next 100 years? 
I would like to see wearable technology expand, especially for applications in healthcare beyond fitness tracking.

Advice for future MSEM students: 
Don't be intimidated by the coursework - it will all pay off. And don't hesitate to reach out and bond with your fellow cohort members.