Voices of Alumni | Pepperdine University | Graziadio Business School

Voices of Alumni

Viviana Arellano-Delgado, BSM ’09/MBA ‘10

I was born and raised in South America in a tiny country called Ecuador. I came to Los Angeles with the idea of taking a short vacation, but I never imagined that 11 years later I would call the United States my second home.

Growing up, I hoped to follow in my father’s successful footsteps and live up to the values instilled in me by my mother to always put education first. However, at a young age, my dreams changed completely when my father passed away. I had no option but to work during the day and attend community college in the evenings. A couple of years later, I started exploring options to transfer to a University and finish my degree knowing that I must continue working full-time and taking classes at night. As I drove down Pacific Coast Highway, I would dream about one day studying business at Pepperdine University.

Through a co-worker, I heard about Pepperdine's Fully Employed bachelor's completion program. I thought I could never afford it, but I attended an information session anyway. After comparing all of my options, I decided to take the "risk" and invest in myself and my education by financing my degree 100% with student loans.

In the beginning, I was worried. A few terms later, after conversing with professors, attending career workshops and networking events, and especially after meeting amazing people in my classes, I felt confident in my ability to find a dream job and pay my loans back.

Believing I still had more to learn, I decided to continue my education at the Graziadio School to earn my MBA. I am blessed to say that nine months after earning my master’s degree, I found my dream job! (Not only did Pepperdine equip me with the tools necessary to land an amazing position, but it brought me my husband – a fellow Graziadio student – too!)

It is because of gifts from alumni which support Graziadio student programs, career services, networking opportunities, and a values-centered education that I was able to believe in myself, my education, and the dream of one day having a Master’s degree, just like my father. So I am more than grateful to be joining you in the Pepperdine family of alumni donors. By preserving the chance for others to be educated in a values-centered leadership environment as the business professionals of tomorrow, we ensure for ourselves a vast and growing network of like-minded professionals.

Life has taken me on an amazing journey, and I am and always will be thankful that Pepperdine is a part of it. I hope you will join me in supporting the Graziadio School of Business and Management today.

Gratefully,

Viviana Arellano-Delgado, BSM ’09/MBA ‘10

P.S. To see what programs, innovations, and scholarships your gift to Graziadio supports, visit bschool.pepperdine.edu/giving.