University of Southern California

Matthew Burdett
Title
A scientist learns the formula for business success
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Graduating Year
2006
Hometown
El Paso, TX

Beginning in July, the midtown-Manhattan office of investment bank CIBC World Markets will have one employee with a hard science research background. His name: Matthew Burdett MBA '06. His graduate school: USC Marshall School of Business.

And the reason why Burdett's past gig is so relevant to his new role in CIBC's health care investment banking group? Because his first-hand industry experience as a medicinal chemist working for a start-up pharmaceutical company will permit him to better comprehend the needs and capabilities of the firms in his sector. This was Burdett 's plan all along in pursing an MBA. "I really wanted to try and leverage the experience I had," he says.

The El Paso, Texas, native, who was also the longtime bass player for the rock band Hayknuckle, interned for CIBC last summer. He also took advantage of Marshall's alumni network to set up informational interviews and obtain useful career advice. Burdett went on a Marshall trip to Beijing, China. And socially, there were great Marshall benefits, as well.

"I've made some great friends that I'll keep for the rest of my life," Burdett says. "I think that's as important as any educational piece there is."