CWiB’s VP of Marketing, Kristen Bierfeldt ’15, is the focus of today’s “Spotlight On” feature. We have Kristen to thank for everything from insightful Facebook posts that keep the CWiB community up to date on issues that affect women in business to CWiB emails that keep everyone up to date on career info sessions and community events. Below she shares some of the highlights of her CBS career thus far.
I was pretty sure that I wanted to pursue a career in Marketing/Brand Management and knew that the New York area provided a lot of great internship opportunities. I also wanted to make sure I chose a school that was strong across the board, in case I decided to go down an entirely different path, and knew that going to CBS would greatly prepare me for whatever career I decided to pursue.
What has been your favorite moment at CBS so far?
Listening to my classmates’ CBS Matters and learning about the incredible things they have each been through and accomplished has been so humbling. I have also enjoyed all the opportunities to travel with my classmates over these past two years. I recently went on the Global Immersion to Cuba and the experience was incredible. It was so great getting to meet so many new people this far into school, and to continue bonding with others I have known since the first day of orientation.
What has been your favorite class or professor at CBS thus far and why?
This might sound a little dorky, but I really enjoyed my time in Professor Juran’s Applied Regression Analysis class. I knew this was something I would definitely be using in a future career but was hesitant to take the class as it wasn’t the most exciting topic to me. He made the 3 hours each week engaging and enjoyable and I walked out of the class not only having learned useful skills but having had fun while doing it.
Why did you decide to become involved with CWiB?
I spent five years prior to CBS working in marketing roles at Retail companies. Suffice it to say, I was always surrounded by a lot of brilliant and inspiring women. I immediately knew when starting at CBS that I wanted to find that same network of women to support and encourage one another.
What does being a CBS Woman mean to you?
Being a CBS Woman means being bold enough to pursue your passions, no matter the obstacles that may be in your way, while being humble and open enough to accept criticism and ideas from others.
What woman (CBS or not) inspires you?
I continue to be amazed and inspired by my mother every day. She has remained incredibly strong despite the difficulties that life has thrown her way.
What has been most surprising or unexpected about your CBS experience?
Every time I am in a Hermes info session or on a call with a prospective student they ask me whether Columbia is cut-throat and competitive, and I always tell them that one of the things I love most about CBS is how welcoming and open-minded all the students are. Coming from a marketing background to a school that has traditionally been known for finance, I was concerned that I may not click with the culture of the school but have been overwhelmed by how amazing and supportive the entire student body is.
What’s something most of your CBS classmates would be surprised to know about you?
I love to travel now but before going to college I had only been on a plane once before in my life (on a family trip to Disney World when I was 10).