Master of Science in Learning and Organizational Change: People On The Move Highlights

Master of Science in Learning and Organizational Change: People On The Move Highlights

Master of Science in Learning and Organizational Change (MSLOC) students, alumni and faculty work in a variety of organizational settings and roles. But their career stories also speak to a common thread – the impact they make as innovative change leaders.

Students and alumni advance in their careers by leveraging a strong MSLOC network and the leadership and strategic thinking skills developed during their time in the program. Many students do not wait for graduation to move into new roles – after just a few classes they are often recognized within their organizations as transformational change agents and strategic partners with a unique point of view.

Over the past three years, 55 percent of MSLOC part-time students who were working full-time received promotions while students in the program; 92 percent of full-time students pursuing human capital consulting jobs graduated with a job.

christina-pedullaFollowing her completion of the MSLOC degree program in March of 2015, Christina Pedulla joined Social Edge Consulting, a management consulting firm specializing in social collaboration partnered exclusively with Jive Software. Her passion is empowering organizations and individual contributors to harness their collaboration potential. At Social Edge Christina works with various Fortune 1000 clients to implement Jive enterprise social network communities designed to create strategic opportunities for innovation and increased productivity via online collaboration. Christina was introduced to Social Edge through the MSLOC network and leveraged her master's research on knowledge sharing and experience as a student in The Hive, MSLOC’s learning community powered by Jive, during the interview process.

During her time as a full-time student in the MSLOC program, Christina worked at Aon as a Knowledge Management Intern and an HR Target Operating Model Intern. She was also a Consultant Intern with BPI group, contributing to talent development, organizational effectiveness and leadership development engagements.
Read about Christina’s MSLOC Capstone Research Project: It’s Not About Me: Individual Knowledge Sharing Behavior in Virtual Communities 

Follow Christina on Twitter: @Knowledge_Geek 

Jesse Newton

Jesse Newton (MSLOC 2011) is now Managing Director and Founder of NOD Consulting Network LLC. Jesse left Booz & Company as a senior member of their People & Change consulting practice to establish his new firm. NOD Consulting Network is a network of premier independent Human Capital and Organization Development consultants. This new consulting model makes it easier for clients to access leading consulting expertise without the big consulting firm price tags. It also helps great independent consultants to find interesting project work. Many of Jesse’s MSLOC colleagues in HR leadership roles have already benefited from this new expertise model.

At the MSLOC 10th Anniversary Celebration in 2012, Jesse gave an innovator talk exploring the connection between happiness and change capability: Building Positive Change Capability, One Individual at a Time

Brad BeckerIn 2013, Brad Becker (MSLOC 2011) co-founded doc&i with the hope of shifting the way medical professionals think about and make critical decisions about pharmaceuticals. Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, Brad worked for GSK as a pharmaceutical sales executive and district trainer for almost nine years. Brad is now the CEO of doc&i, a software company that bridges the relationship between the pharmaceutical and the medical community by providing medication pricing and coverage transparency to physicians. This allows physicians to prescribe and recommend the best and most cost effective prescriptions to their patients, preventing overpayment.

Brad credits the MSLOC program with helping him understand how difficult change can be. Understanding the process and complexity of change keeps him motivated to continue on his mission to change the current mindset and behaviors of doctors, payors, pharmacy benefit management programs, patients and pharmacies related to pharmaceuticals. He actively applies what he learned in the MSLOC program about knowledge management and strategic change to demonstrate the industry need for doc&i.

Recently, doc&i has received attention as a company to watch.

Peggy Troyer 

Margaret (Peggy) Troyer (MSLOC 2013) joined Northwestern Mutual as a Human Resources Consultant in 2014. With the decision to change from an insurance company to a financial services company, Northwestern Mutual has experienced sudden growth which has called for a significant change to HR. Peggy’s role is to support Communications & Corporate Affairs, Government Relations, Strategic Philanthropy and departments in the Finance/Risk function through this HR transformation. As an HR Consultant, she is responsible for coaching people through change in an environment that has thrived in tradition, hierarchy, and service. Recently, Peggy was able to use her problem solving and consulting skills to facilitate an employee engagement impact planning session. During the session, employees took time out to examine underlying organizational issues and brainstorm possible solutions to increase employee engagement and decrease employee attrition. The results of the employee-driven plan have yet to be seen, but the sessions proved to be engaging and collaborative, empowering participants to implement change regardless of their role.

Peggy has 18 years of experience in consulting external and internal clients by developing various HR solutions in the areas of Performance Management, Talent Management, and HR process improvements. Her experience spans industries including electronics, manufacturing, telecommunications, engineering, insurance, energy and medical products.

Read Peggy’s MSLOC masters research project: Resilience and Commitment After a Merger or Acquisition

Will Leahy 

Will Leahy (MSLOC Student) has landed his dream job as a Consultant within LinkedIn's Customer Success organization. In this role, he lives at the intersection of technology and talent acquisition as LinkedIn continues to disrupt the industry. As massive organizations completely shift their talent acquisition strategy away from agency and instead leverage LinkedIn for talent branding, recruitment, job postings, and marketing initiatives, the change management required is off the charts. This is where Will comes in to implement the LinkedIn product, help clients through the change curve, and prove ROI with analytics and quarterly business reviews. Will believes that if it were not for the thorough courses, constant support, and amazing community found at MSLOC, this job would still be just a dream.

Cathy BarreraCathy Barrera (MSLOC student) has been promoted to Director of Research Administration for Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science. In this role, Cathy leads the strategic management and day-to-day operations of the Office of Research Administration, overseeing research administration for eight academic departments and several research centers, representing over 180 faculty members. In this role, Cathy will lead the school in developing best practices, strategy and policy, while ensuring the highest compliance standards are met. She attributes much of her success to her MSLOC experiences. The coaching and adult learning skills she has acquired have given her the confidence to lead and development such a large team. In the field of research administration, which is subject to the federal environment, change is always on the horizon. However, change professionals are few and far between, so Cathy’s experiences in the MSLOC program have been incredibly valuable.


Stephanie Waite (MSLOC 2013) was recently promoted to Director of Leadership & Organizational Development at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. Stephanie is responsible for setting and implementing the strategy for leadership and organizational development, developing and optimizing leadership programming to support the human resources and organizational strategic objectives. Additionally, she serves as an internal consultant for implementation of large scale behavioral, strategic, operational and change initiatives to over 400 leaders. After completing the MSLOC program, Stephanie joined the hospital as the Manager of Organizational Development & Physician Services.

 In her last quarter of the MSLOC program, Stephanie worked with the hospital as an external consultant to develop their leadership competencies and behaviors. The leadership competencies and behaviors she developed now serve as the foundation for all leadership talent programming and development.

Stephanie’s favorite part of attending conferences, events and industry meetings is seeing another MSLOC smiling face – it is a community that she is truly proud to be a part of, and can say that it has been a springboard and sharpening stone for her development. “I would not be where I am now without the knowledge, connections, relationships and community of MSLOC,” says Waite.

Stephanie refers to her MSLOC library, concepts, learning and network to create creative solutions for her organization’s complex needs and areas of opportunities. This year she partnered with MSLOC Practicum students who built out recommendations for a New Leader Onboarding program that the hospital is planning to implement in 2016. 

Stephanie’s MSLOC Capstone research focused on the connection between induction programs of new teachers to increase retention. More specifically, it focused on mentoring the new generation of teachers, entering into a less than attractive career due to the changing socio-political landscape of education throughout our nation, and the connection to increasing the retention of these education-pioneers. Now, with the healthcare landscape changing in the same fashion, she’s able to use similar research practices and data to create ways to retain, develop and support new leaders entering the organization.

whit-wesenbergWhit Wesenberg (MSLOC Student) has been promoted to Professional Development Specialist - Litigation at the law firm of Winston & Strawn LLP. Tasked with managing and advancing all litigation-based professional development, Whit holds a lead role in identifying, defining and implementing learning and development opportunities for more than 250 domestic associates. In this position, he also functions as an internal consultant, working with attorney and staff subject matter experts to design and execute a variety of L&D programs and initiatives.

Whit attributes much of his success to the knowledge and skills acquired through MSLOC. He believes his ability to demonstrate a keen understanding of both organizational change and adult learning and performance has been fundamental to his advancement.


Laura Zeligman (MSLOC Student) has recently taken on a new role within PwC, as Manager in Assurance Transformation. In this role, Laura will be driving organizational change as PwC simplifies its audit through innovation. Laura is excited to bring together different areas of her background including process consulting, instructional design, and change management. She is finding her current MSLOC course, Executing Strategic Change, extremely relevant and helpful for analyzing the change and applying best practices to drive engagement and sustainability. Prior to this new role, Laura held learning and development project management and implementation roles at PwC.

Follow Laura on Twitter: @LauraZeligman 

Nicole Haris

Nicole Haris (MSLOC 2010) has been promoted to Director of Talent Management for Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa for McDonald’s Corporation. In this role, Nicole will be responsible for driving talent management initiatives as well as deploying leadership development workshops for 38 countries in the region. Nicole was introduced to McDonald’s Corp. through her MSLOC Practicum and later hired as Manager of Global HR Design in 2012, where she leveraged her Capstone work in building informal change networks and knowledge-sharing communities. Nicole will be joining the talent management team in Hong Kong, led by fellow MSLOC alumna Janet Man, Senior Director, Talent Management.

Jim Green

After 11 years of employment with global pharmaceutical firm Pfizer, Jim Green (MSLOC Student) recently accepted a new position with Sorin Group working as a Clinical Sales Operation Specialist. Sorin Group is a global medical device company and a leader in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases (CVD). With the future launch of multiple cutting-edge CVD products, Sorin Group is primed for growth and change. Sorin Group created the position for Jim after his discussions with the Director of Human Resources unveiled his knowledge of navigating and leading change within the healthcare space and the need for these topics to be explored in a paced and methodical setting. This position proved to be an ideal fit for Jim. He will have the opportunity to marry both the business and technical expertise acquired while employed at Pfizer, with the change management skills developed as an MSLOC graduate student.

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Master's in Learning & Organizational Change

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Phone: 847/491-7376