Dedicated to the enhancement of educational and economic empowerment for African Americans, the National Black MBA Association is leading the way in bringing together professionals and students to share common experiences, career goals, and aspirations.
With 40 local chapters across the United States, the National MBA Association is helping people from anywhere achieve their dreams. Demetrius Washington is the NBMBAA Dallas/Fort Worth president, and spoke with rolling out about what it means to be a part of the association and how it has influenced his career.
It means family, resources and inspiration. I come from the Midwest, I am now in Dallas, president of the Dallas/Fort Worth chapter, but I grew up in a lot of spaces where I was always the real minority. I went to predominantly White schools, so I also didn’t have a lot of role models. In my family, a lot of them worked in more service industries, so coming up and then trying to grow in corporate America, I needed a network like National Black MBAA to help me grow in my career, and navigate corporate America.
How has the National Black MBAA influenced your career?
I wanted to be like my dad, so when I was an undergrad I majored in sociology. My dad worked in community centers with youth, all of my childhood. I thought that’s what I was going to do, but I was a broke college student. I got a job working in a bank and I didn’t know anything about banking. Once I got in there, I figured out that I loved it. By that time, it was too late to switch my major, so earning my MBA and then getting affiliated with the organization helped me to develop the language of business and how to communicate in [those] settings. Today, I work in financial technology, and that’s an intersection where Black people have often been excluded from — finance and technology — and having an MBA has given me the credentials.
What do you think about the income potential for somebody who has an MBA versus not having one?
That is a somewhat challenging question. There are so many different paths that you can take with an MBA. We have entrepreneurs and people who want to grow in business, so ultimately, I would say that the income potential is limitless, but I am someone who doesn’t focus on the money or the time. I encourage people to pursue their passions, and money [will] come along with that. I think that you just have so many different opportunities when you get an MBA that should have you at a higher income potential than someone who doesn’t.