Name: Matt Meyers
Hometown: Jenkintown, PA (Yes... from the Goldbergs)
Company: Pennsylvania Institute of Technology
Position: Vice President of Administration
Length of time you have been with your company: 11 Years.
Briefly describe your journey, noting both personal milestones and obstacles you may have faced along the way.I arrived at P.I.T. in 2008, having just been laid off due to the closure of a for-profit school where I served for three years as Associate Director of Admissions. Intrigued by the prospect of working in non-profit higher education, I took a step back and accepted a position at P.I.T. as an Admissions Representative. Since starting at P.I.T., I became a father (of two intelligent and caring little girls), much of my hair have either turned grey or am loose, and have experienced the disappointing closure. Through it all though, I have continued to seek the types of challenges that I hope will propel me forward, both personally and professionally.
How did you hear about LDC and why did you sign up to take part in it?One of my colleagues graduated from the LDC class last year and raved about the personal growth that was achieved through the class and the bonds that were formed with the local community. As an individual who has never resided in Delaware County but has worked here for a number of years, my greatest interest is building stronger connections in the community and meeting like-minded leaders of the community.
What inspires you? How does that inspiration play into your professional life?I draw my greatest inspiration from my family. As a young person, I bore witness to a father who worked tirelessly in commissioned sales to ensure that his family had bountiful opportunities. In turn, I look to my partner, Allison, and my girls, who provide me with more motivation than I will ever need to help me achieve my goals. Lastly, I am fortunate to work at P.I.T. with an exceptionally talented staff and faculty who have dedicated their professional lives to the success of the next generation. They inspire me day in and day out.
Briefly describe a trans formative moment that helped to shift your approach to your career.I attended a Liberal Arts college, majoring in Political Science, because of a general interest in the process, people, and impact. Never did I think about a college education being formative in building a path to a career. After graduation and several months of unsuccessful job hunting from my childhood bedroom, I had that “aha moment” – I should be a teacher! Without a graduate degree (or, at the time, the desire to obtain one), I began searching for administrative employment in education, where I went on to find a career and a passion.
What leaders, thinkers, or doers do you admire most? Why?I have tremendous admiration for the dying art of Investigative journalism. In college, I was fortunate to be editor of the school newspapers. There was never a more exciting feeling than being “on a story.” Investigative journalism is like peeling an onion, in that each layer that is peeled has a thickness that is unknown and you have no idea how many layers exist. From “muckraker” Ida Tabell’s detailing The Standard Oil Company’s violation of antitrust laws of the early 20th century to the more recent article penned by Ronan Farrow exposing abuse of Hollywood stars, these mavericks put their own safety and security on the line for the greater good.
What have been the most valuable professional advice and/or lesson you’ve received? My first job out of college was selling promotional products (e.g., key chains, pens, and shirts, anything with a logo). After weeks of sales calls with no orders, I had an exceptional meeting with the owner of a mushroom farm in Kennett Square who placed an order for over 300 jackets at about $100 a pop. At twenty-two years old, the commission from that sale would cover my expenses for about two months. I was on cloud nine. I called my boss to share the good news. His response was, “That’s great! Go get a steak dinner and a good night’s sleep. You earned it! But, be in early tomorrow, because you need to do that every week if you want to be successful.” Any time I think that I have accomplished something, I think back to those words, and that’s what pushes me to achieve my next goal.
Photo by: Active Image Media