Justin Dunaway-Perez ’16

Felt his professors were more like life coaches. 

“Above and beyond what I expected” is how Justin Dunaway-Perez ’16 describes his learning experience at Redlands. The business major said he knew the degree completion program in the School of Business was structured as conducive to the schedule of a working adult. What he didn’t know was how committed his professors would be to his education—in and out of the classroom—and the difference it would make to his academic success. 

“I feel as though the professors work with me, rather than me working alone, toward my degree completion,” Justin says. “It's like being surrounded with academic assistants, life coaches and success mentors.”

Justin, 26, is currently focused on international finance and arbitrage, and says he is eager to move forward into investing and to learn more about banking. “The University of Redlands is preparing me for these avenues by introducing me to some of the most noteworthy professionals in these fields. They are my professors and also the authors of my textbooks, and I am able to interact with many of them.”

Another opportunity the program afforded Justin was to study abroad. “The International Business Study Abroad program, where we traveled to Austria and Italy, was one of the most interesting learning experiences I have had here, and in my entire life,” Justin says.  “I was exposed to some of the greatest artistic and architectural accomplishments mankind has ever undertaken, while being taught the issues of succeeding in an increasingly complex international business environment.”

The trip included lessons in law, ethics, marketing and the principles of entrepreneurship. “We learned how to navigate foreign lands with little to no knowledge of the languages, socialize with people from many different backgrounds and establish relationships quickly and firmly enough to do business immediately with people.”

Justin says his program schedule allows time to work on investment strategies, quality time with his wife and three dogs, gardening at his home in Beaumont and the advantage of a servant leadership teaching opportunity with University of Redlands Professor Jennifer Tilton through the REACH (Read, Empower, Attain, Create, Hope) program.

“Had I a different schedule for classes,” he says, “I may have attained knowledge, but been without any of the opportunities to utilize the wisdom bestowed upon me to better my environment and the lives of others. I know that these opportunities to exercise social responsibility and servant leadership are what will build the character necessary to compete in today's increasingly adversarial environment where building lasting partnerships is the key to success.”