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Which groups or activities were you most involved in at ASU? What did you gain from that involvement?
Steve: Coming from a small private school I was looking for ways to make ASU feel a bit less overwhelming. It was suggested to me that I rush a fraternity, and I was lucky enough to find a house that was a perfect fit and joined Pi Kappa Alpha. The fraternity made me feel much more comfortable on campus, and allowed me to build a base of friends quickly.
Stacy: My freshman year at ASU I went through rush and joined Alpha Delta Pi. I was the Alpha Educator and later the president. Being involved in my sorority taught me how to balance a big workload, practice leadership principles, and showed me that I could be charitable in ways I didn’t realize I could be.
How did your education at ASU prepare you for your current job or business?
Steve: While attending ASU I learned a tremendous amount from my professors, but I also learned quite a bit about myself, including how to manage my time, make a budget, become comfortable in uncomfortable environments and how to find common threads or interests with people from all over. The ability to connect with an audience, employer, co-worker or employee quickly and find a mutual interest allows you to build relationships that will serve you well for your entire career.
Stacy: I was a broadcasting major, and though I didn’t pursue a job in this field, what I learned at the Cronkite School was invaluable to me. I learned to work smart, be thick-skinned and persistent, and to look beyond the obvious to see what really could was possible. I found that you need to create parallels between what you know and are good at and any new opportunity that comes your way.
How did ASU help you achieve your dream?
Steve: I never dreamed of starting a pet company, but I always knew I would be an entrepreneur. I initially was on a track for a marketing degree but changed course and received a degree in agri-business, thus allowing me to pursue a new career goal as well as stay on track to graduate on time. That change reinforced the idea that what you expect to happen rarely does, and if you are not able to adapt quickly to those changes, you might miss your opportunity.
Everyone gets a chance to make their dreams happen but many are too scared to take the chance. Deciding to attend ASU was the first step that led me on the path that I am on today. Without taking that step, I am not sure anything that I have accomplished would have been possible.
Stacy: Having a degree from ASU meant that there was a large group of people I could turn to for guidance at any point in my career. In today’s work force, being able to send out a resume where you can take your skills and translate it to many different industries, customizing it for the particular job you want, is key. Without my degree from the Cronkite School, I wouldn’t have been able to achieve all I have.
ASU is also where I met my husband my senior year. We married four years later and that was a dream come true. You can say that our little family of four bleeds maroon and gold!
Tell us about your selection for ASU’s Sun Devil 100 and what that’s meant to you.
Steve: It was such an honor to be selected as one of the initial Sun Devil 100 in recognition of our original company, Bionic Pet Products, and our current business, Pet Product Ventures. The most exciting part about the selection was that I was selected with my wife Stacy. Being able to share an amazing life with a former Sun Devil and a couple of little future Devils is amazing. Our adventures never end and our selection as Sun Devil 100 is one of our proudest moments to date.
Stacy: To know that ASU recognized our company as one that demonstrated innovation and entrepreneurial spirit gave us a great feeling of validation. Being that we are both Sun Devils, Bionic Pet Products was built on the values and integrity that we believe all Sun Devils possess.
What are three “can’t-miss” ASU experiences every Sun Devil should participate in?
Stacy: First of all, how can you choose just three can’t miss experiences at ASU?