PJ Meyer
PJ Meyer
Home Region

Barryville, NY

Undergrad Education

Binghamton University (formerly of SUNY), 07, Computer Science

Previous Experience

Lockheed Martin, software engineer

HBS Activities

TechMedia Club, Entrepreneurship Club, Volleyball Club

“My course work is shaping the way I think so that I can be more effective as a manager.”

Even while pursuing his computer science major at Binghamton, PJ Meyer found himself following a different kind of calling. "In school, there was tendency to steer us toward software engineering positions," says PJ. "But I was moving toward entrepreneurship." PJ helped "level the playing field for local businesses" by working with student groups to set up internet alternatives for small businesses to perform everything from advertising to online ordering.

Participation in a number of business contests, plus a few business classes, solidified PJ's ambitions. "You always have a dream, a hope for something great. I aimed for the top – HBS. The more I looked at it, the more I realized it was a great fit."

"Subversive" learning

Without a lot of business experience behind him, PJ needed an MBA program that could put him on a firm foundation. "The case method is just the right thing for me," PJ says. "Every day, I'm put in the place of two or three executives with specific problems. I have to role-play how I would handle them. And defend my choices before 89 other people. My course work is not just about gaining knowledge – it's shaping the way I think so that I can be a more effective as a manager. The case method is a subversive form of instilling business experience!"

PJ has also been able to acquire management experience through extracurricular activities. For the TechMedia Club's Cyberposium, he organized a panel on virtual worlds and online games. "I had to find a moderator who wasn't afraid to ask tough questions, and assemble a balanced panel that would encourage discussion and debate," says PJ. "Through the school, I was able to access people way beyond my reach, like Philip Rosedale, the creator of Second Life. Here, you go from working with great students and professors to CEOs of multimillion dollar companies – only HBS can do that."

Help smaller businesses compete

As PJ sees it, there is an "equalizing" quality at HBS. "In classes, some students may be tempted to show off with complex equations or business concepts," he says. "But the professors will cut through the jargon by asking, 'What exactly is that? What does all that really mean?'"

That's the kind of down-to-earth approach PJ plans to take as he pursues his business career. "Eventually, I'd like to start my own technology company," he says. "I want to use the Internet to help smaller businesses compete with the larger players."