Robert Taylor has left an indelible mark on Concordia’s campus since he arrived in 2020. Pursuing a degree in Business Analytics, Robert’s journey has been a testament to his unwavering perseverance.

Editor’s note: This is one in a series of stories highlighting a few Concordia’s uncommon graduates. Faculty and staff submit candidates for consideration. Stories are posted in the days leading up to commencement. View more uncommon graduates here

Despite facing numerous challenges, he has managed to secure a full-time job post-graduation with the steadfast support of his Concordia community. His hard work and resilience help distinguish him as one of Concordia’s featured uncommon graduates.

The right conditions

Robert’s journey began in Miami, Florida, where he excelled academically and athletically. His singular aspiration was to distance himself from Florida, a dream that materialized when he connected with the Concordia football program.

“Concordia seemed like the perfect fit for me—a good school with a strong football program where I could thrive on my own,” reflects Robert. He quickly learned that he would indeed thrive, but not alone, with the help of several encouraging Concordians who would root for him on every step of his journey. 

While he immediately made an impression on Concordia’s faculty and staff, it took time for Robert to gain momentum in his field of study away from campus. The driven student set his intention to land an internship after only his first year. Yet, to his dismay, he was rejected repeatedly, “nearly twenty times over two years of trying,” Robert brags.

“Man, I was doing everything right,” says Robert. “I tailored my resumes and cover letters specifically for the opportunity, kept up my LinkedIn profile, studied the companies, prepared for interviews, did my follow-ups, and nothing stuck.”

Concordia seemed like the perfect fit for me—a good school with a strong football program where I could thrive on my own.

Robert Taylor (’24), Business Analytics

While applying for all these internships, he was also working the third shift for a manufacturing company and trying to keep up with his academics. 

“I went through a tough time,” admits Robert. “When I worked the overnight shift, my grades suffered, and it took a toll on my mental health and my confidence. I was tired all the time and got behind on my schoolwork.”  

Open to advice

Also, during that time, Robert withdrew from the School of Business due to a clerical error that was ultimately corrected, which was the bottom he needed to reach out for help. This rejection led Robert to seek various student services on campus to help him get back on track and eventually land an internship. He attended all the career fairs, signed up for a mentor, sought academic assistance through the Academic Resource Center, and was a regular in the career development office. 

His persistence caught the attention of Walter Goodwyn, Director of Multicultural Engagement, who has since become a mentor to Robert. “Robert is unique because he readily asks for advice and then goes to great lengths to demonstrate that he’s taken it in,” says Walter. 

Walter’s advice included dressing for success. 

“Robert needed to look the part to be considered for the part,” said Walter. “Robert already had great style; I just helped him add more pieces to his wardrobe and put it all together.”

“Walter taught me to present myself in the way I want to be perceived,” says Robert. “As soon as I learned to dress the part, I had more confidence in entering business spaces and having business conversations.” 

Robert also learned to navigate interviews and continued to work on his mental health and personal wellness. All of the advice paid off. After his junior year, Robert landed an internship at Alro Steel Corporation, which led to a full-time job offer upon graduation. 

“These past four years, I’ve grown so much thanks to Concordia’s caring faculty and staff,” says Robert. “When I walk into the company on my first day, I’m not just representing myself; I’m representing all those who helped me along the way. I know they will see the value in me and the work I’ve done.”

Want in?

The Batterman School of Business offers a complete range of business education programs and degrees including associate’s and bachelor’s degrees for undergraduate and accelerated adult students, licensures, and certifications. Graduate programs include our highly ranked Master’s of Business Administration (with 13 concentrations), Master’s in Leadership, Accountancy, Business Analytics and a Doctor of Business Administration. To learn more, click below!