Student Voices

Qiaoling Ma

Qiaoling Ma


"It is an amazing program for those who want to learn how be a great entrepreneur and business leader and it is worthwhile for innovators who desire to launch a successful company."

Q:What do you do in your current job/what are your responsibilities?

A:I am currently a PhD student in Applied Economics at Northeastern University. My major research interests are industrial organization, high-tech industries, strategy of company growth, technological innovation, business model innovation, and entrepreneurship. My current research projects mainly focus on technology development in the robotics industry, and business model innovation.

Q:What skills are you building in the D'Amore-McKim MSTE program that you will use in your future career?

A:There are three skills that I have been building throughout my time in the MSTE program. First, I am developing my overall entrepreneurial skills. As an entrepreneur, you need to have certain abilities in order to achieve your goals, such as planning, decision-making, communication skills, and recognizing opportunities. Second, I am learning how to work in a cross-functional team effectively, since my project teams consist of people from various educational background and job fields. Last but not least, networking. When I start a new venture in the future, I know I can reach out to one of my classmates or any of the MSTE alumni for assistance.

Q:What skills did you build in the D'Amore-McKim MSTE program that you are applying at your current job?

A:The creative and critical thinking skills that I developed in the MSTE program are the skills I am applying most in my current study and work. This type of thinking allows me to generate new ideas and thoughts on my research projects, and find new approaches to accomplish multiple tasks effectively. The leadership and communication skills I gained in the program have also allowed me to deliver and share information and thoughts effectively, improving my productivity.

Q:Would you say to a colleague considering enrolling in the MSTE program?

A:The MS in Technological Entrepreneurship is a great program for students looking to turn their technology-focused ideas into commercialized products and services. The faculty in the program have extensive, real-world experience and profound insights on entrepreneurship and innovation. It is an amazing program for those who want to learn how be a great entrepreneur and business leader and it is worthwhile for innovators who desire to launch a successful company.

Q:Why did you choose the D'Amore-McKim MSTE?

A:I chose the D’Amore-McKim MSTE program because of the great opportunity it provided for someone wishing to learn how to start a company. The program also offered the experienced faculty and the courses needed to prepare one to become a successful entrepreneur and innovative business leader. Also, Northeastern University has an extremely active entrepreneurial community with many groups and organizations dedicated to entrepreneurship and innovation.

Q:What was your biggest take-away from earning your MSTE at Northeastern?

A:I have three significant takeaways. First, the MSTE program helped me build a strong understanding that to be a successful entrepreneur, it requires strong leadership, team building skills, an deep understanding of new product development, communication skills, negotiation skills, and the ability to make hard decisions. Second, graduating with an MSTE does not mean you have to start your business immediately. It means you have a better understanding on how, when, where, and with whom to start a company; it means a better chance to be successful and know how to prepare yourself to be a great entrepreneur. Third, entrepreneurial spirit is critical for a successful career in our rapidly changing world. It is a mindset and attitude that means you are willing to make change and embrace uncertainty.

Q:Where do you see yourself in 5 or 10 years?

A:I see myself as an entrepreneur in the high-tech industry and as an academic researcher in a leading research institution. Similar to some of our current MSTE faculty!

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"The Development Project was a highlight of the MSTE program because it allowed concrete application of the learning that took place throughout the program." — Ben Burrage, MSTE '13

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