College of Business alumni to establish ATG office in Spain
Nov. 7, 2019
MISSOULA – University of Montana College of Business alumni can be found in virtually every corner of the world. Many graduates have the unique opportunity to utilize their business degrees abroad, working in foreign countries. Asia Caluori (MIS 2018) and Stuart Clemow (Accounting 2013, MAcct 2014) are two of those alumni that will be heading overseas. The pair will be helping Advanced Technology Group, or ATG, setup and train employees at new offices in Barcelona, Spain.
ATG, acquired by Cognizant one year ago, is a leader in quote-to-cash solution services to both commercial and large enterprise brands, bringing contemporary, boutique-style consulting to a global marketplace. Over the past year, ATG’s Missoula Solution Center has added 81 new hires – nearly all from within the Missoula area.
ATG Cognizant has also partnered with UM in creating All-In Missoula (AIM), a 12-week paid training program to serve as an on-ramp to a career in a technology field. Upon successful completion of the program, trainees will be guaranteed a job interview, and could be placed within various roles and projects at Cognizant in Missoula. Currently, 53 graduates from the program are currently working for Cognizant.
Asia and Stuart will be spending two years helping establish the Spanish office for ATG Cognizant. It’s a chance for ATG to get a stronghold in an untapped market and open an avenue for employees and UM College of Business students to work and intern abroad.
The UM College of Business was able to catch up with the two alumni before their adventure and ask them a few questions.
COB: What motivated your path of study as a college student?
Asia: I have always been interested in understanding the various moving parts involved with running a business, so I knew that I wanted to complete a major within the College of Business. After taking the Intro to Management Information Systems (MIS) class, I realized that I could have the opportunity to improve my technical skills while also getting to look at business processes from a 50,000 foot-view, and decided that the MIS major was the best fit for my skillset and interests.
Stuart: My father is a CPA so I decided to follow his footsteps. When you don’t know what you want to be when you grow up pick a familiar path?? It’s actually a phenomenal foundation in the Quote to Cash space.
COB: Why did you choose the University of Montana?
Asia: I chose the University of Montana because I wanted to expand my horizons. I grew up in South Florida, which consists of a very different culture than Missoula. I wanted to experience new hobbies, meet new people, and to still achieve a strong educational background without paying an arm and a leg for it.
Stuart: My Mom, Dad, Grandfather, and Sister went to the U of M. It’s a family thing. Plus, it’s very reasonably priced for the quality of education you get at the College of Business.
COB: How did your experience at UM help prepare you for success in your current position?
Asia: My major, Management Information Systems, included a lot of hands-on work. The program involved completing system implementation projects for local nonprofits, which helped me to build experience in working with project teams and gave me the confidence to manage client relationships. It was typical to have multiple projects going on for different classes at once, so it was also a great lesson in time management.
Stuart: Self-reliance. I find it amazing how often people don’t try to figure out problems on their own and expect someone to hand them an answer.
COB: What did you enjoy the most about being a student at the University of Montana?
Asia: The College of Business is small enough that I was able to build strong relationships with the faculty and staff. Professors never left an impression that they were too busy to help their students, and the staff (career development, advisory) was able to help me to define my career goals and find different opportunities that would be a good fit for my skillset. I have been lucky enough to maintain several of these relationships today.
Stuart: Ping pong class. Turns out lots of people play it in technology and it doesn’t hurt to have a leg up on them!
COB: How did you end up at ATG?
Asia: Initially, I had plans to accept an offer from a Big Four Accounting Firm in San Francisco, California. However, my senior year of college, I worked in a part-time role at ATG. I ended up loving the work that I was doing and the culture within the organization, and decided to change my plans and continue on as a full-time employee at ATG.
Stuart: In between jobs and had been following ATG for some time. Many of my friends worked there so I decided to make a career change from private accounting to technology. Never looked back.
COB: What do you enjoy the most about your job?
Asia: No two days are the same. I get to work in different roles on a variety of different project types. I have the flexibility to support internal initiatives, deliver on software implementations for clients, lead trainings, and build relationships with our partners. As of late, I will spend the next two years living in Barcelona, Spain!
Stuart: It is constantly challenging me intellectually. Every time I look back over a rolling 6-month period I cannot believe everything I’ve accomplished. It also gives me many opportunities to travel and see the world.
COB: What are you looking forward to the most in Spain?
Asia: We get to build a practice and a team from the ground up. The ATG Missoula office has a really special culture and I love what Tom Stergois and the rest of the team here has been able to create in the past few years. The group of us going to Barcelona has the opportunity to mold a brand-new team. I am looking forward to building relationships with new people and getting to play a role in developing a culture similar to what has been so successful for us here.
Stuart: Europe is full of opportunity within the industry I work. Who wouldn’t want to be the first to make a big splash on the scene?
COB: What advice do you have for current business students beginning to launch their careers?
Asia: Don’t wait around for opportunities to be handed to you. Take initiative and create opportunities for yourself. If you see somebody in a role that you find interesting, get to know that person and offer up your help or even ask to shadow them. Try to find an intersection between your passions and your work.
Stuart: Get out of your comfort zone. You learn the most from being lost in a challenging situation. Don’t give up, persist.
The University of Montana is the flagship university of the state. The College of Business at UM is nationally renowned and has been named the top business school in the Big Sky Conference by U.S. News and World Report for four consecutive years.