Shayda Haddad MBA’22 Honors Parents by Succeeding at SMC

by Annaliese Martinez ’21, College Communications Staff Writer | September 16, 2021
A year after the tragic death of her parents, Shayda Haddad has persevered and accomplished academic success in the Saint Mary’s MBA program. After earning a 4.0 GPA and applying her education toward her career goals, Haddad keeps the memory of her parents alive. 

When Haddad found out she was accepted into the program on July 10, 2020, she was eager to share the news with her family. “I opened my email, and I saw that I had been accepted. The first thing I did was I picked up the phone and I called my dad, and I told him. He was really excited.”

However, Haddad’s life changed just a day later when her parents were killed in a car accident. “Your whole world stops,” said Haddad. “You hear about this stuff on the news. You hear about it, but you never think it’s going to be you.”

Despite this loss, Haddad decided to enroll in the MBA program to honor her father, who attended Saint Mary’s after escaping the Iranian Revolution in the late 1970s. “I made a promise to myself and to my dad that I would do it. I would start the program, I would finish the program, and I was going to do it as well as I could,” said Haddad. “I am doing this for him. Even though somebody took such a big part of my life away, I can still push through.”

A Community of Support

Haddad credits her success at Saint Mary’s to her supportive peers and professors in the MBA program. “It’s been wonderful. Even while being online, and being remote, I’ve still been able to feel that support and that growth...That’s something I really appreciate about this program that I haven’t seen elsewhere.”

As a growth marketing analyst for online thrift company ThredUp, Haddad uses her Saint Mary’s education in real-world situations. “A lot of the course material is not just reading a book and taking a test, it’s relating it to your everyday life. In one of my courses, Marketing 306 Management Communication, we have a period of time at the beginning of class where we can talk about our industry and how we’re using what we’re learning in class,” said Haddad. “Before I was enrolled in this program, I didn’t have that confidence, so it’s given me the ability to grow not only personally but professionally.”

Overall, Haddad appreciates the Saint Mary’s MBA program for helping her achieve educational and professional goals and finding healing. “I’m really proud of myself for keeping through it, and I know my dad is, too...I know both of my parents are really proud.”

To learn more about Saint Mary’s MBA Program, click here.