Monica is a Business Development Manager at Google where she leads merchant partnerships for Android Pay. She has launched numerous integrations with national brands including Panera Bread, Dunkin’ Donuts and Walgreens; all while enabling frictionless commerce experiences for users on the Android platform.
Previously Monica was a Finance Manager at American Express, where she led deal modeling and advisory on consumer co-brand programs and commerce innovation. She was a key player in driving the American Express Apple Pay partnership, enabling AmEx customers to make purchases in-store on a mobile device. It was during this time that Monica became fascinated with the intersection of consumer experiences and technology.
Monica started-off her career in investment banking at Lehman Brothers and Bank of America Merrill Lynch, and is originally from New York City. She earned her MBA at The Wharton School and B.S. degree in Business Management at Stony Brook University.
Degree Type: BS in Business Management
What’s your 30-60 second elevator pitch?
If I was still in graduate school and wanted to request an informational interview with someone on Google’s Android Pay team, my pitch would go something like this:
I’m in my first year at Wharton majoring in Management, with four years of experience in the payments industry. While at American Express, I leveraged customer level data and mobile wallet research to analyze whether the company should launch with Apple Pay. My analysis influenced multiple rounds of negotiations with Apple, which resulted in a partnership on more favorable terms, and American Express being the first US issuer to launch with the mobile wallet. This experience highlights my ability to build partnerships that are customer-centric and focused on profitability – qualities that could help me succeed in a business development role at Google.
You made a similar transition from finance to technology, and I would value your advice on how to market myself to the industry. May I call you to arrange a brief follow-up conversation?
Did you consider any other careers as a student? If yes, which ones? What changed your mind?
I came into Stony Brook as a Psychology major, but truthfully I didn’t know what I wanted to do and only chose that because it sounded interesting. It was after taking my first business course freshman year, that I took an interest in Business. After a few more electives I officially changed my major to Business Management during my Sophomore year, and I haven’t looked back since.
As a student I concentrated in Finance, eventually accepting a job on Wall Street after graduation. But I also considered Human Resources. During my Senior year I interned in Employer Relations at Stony Brook’s Career Center, where I managed the On-campus Recruiting Program for undergraduate and graduate students. Ultimately I decided to stay the course with Finance because I thought it would challenge me the most, and I wanted to strengthen my analytical skills.
Who or what experience influenced your career growth the most while at SBU?
While at SBU there were two outside programs I learned about through the Career Center: Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) and Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO). Both programs molded me professionally and prepared a path for me to pursue a career on Wall Street. Both are also great for those interested in internships within corporate finance, general management or investment banking.
In addition, my internship at the Career Center allowed me to spend my senior year building my professional presence leading up to graduation. I spoke with recruiters daily and conducted weekly on-campus recruiting orientations for students on how to conduct an effective job search. This grew my leadership skills and sharpened my communication skills. It also made me feel more prepared for the transition from student to full-time professional.
What do you wish you had known as a student?
As a student, I wish I had done more career exploration and started visiting the Career Center sooner, such as freshman year. Although I landed the internship I wanted after my junior year, I had the benefit of outside support (MLT and SEO) to bring me up to speed in how to recruit. My advice to students is to start visiting the Career Center now, and put thought into what goes into your resume. The job market is competitive and internship experience is a valuable way to set yourself apart. Other ways to build your resume include taking electives, joining campus clubs, taking on leadership roles, doing volunteer work, etc.
While you are not expected to have it all figured out, you should demonstrate that you have taken steps to build skills and explore what it is you are interested in.
What piece of advice would you offer students looking to get into your area of interest and expertise?
Ask alums for informational interviews. Use Linkedin to network. Start on your resume TODAY and remember that it will always be a work in progress. If you are interested in tech or finance, start following industry news. Join clubs and take on leadership roles on campus in areas of interest. Lastly, start checking out the websites and jobs of companies that peak your interest. The more upfront work you do on these things, the more prepared you will feel when it comes time to apply for internships and jobs!