"Stanford is one of the best choices for its high educational quality and world class reputation."

Moutaz Fakhry is a goal-oriented, forward-thinking professional. He values the process of developing a plan and taking the steps needed to meet his goals. He believes in commitment, hard work, and continuing education. He is also a family man, dedicated to building a bright future for his wife and young children while honoring his past, namely the memory of his father, a former academic who valued education more than anything. "After my father passed away last year," he says, "I felt an increasing determination to make my father proud and honor his name."

An advisory engineer at IBM and a global citizen, Fakhry earned a degree in electrical engineering from a prestigious university in Egypt and co-founded a company, Innovance, Inc. during that same period. He has worked as a technical marketing consultant for several international companies and has traveled extensively around the world. His professional and life experiences have given him a broad and deep understanding of business and culture. Yet he feels that furthering his education is essential to meeting his professional goals. He is currently enrolled in Stanford's management science and engineering graduate certificate program.

Both his current employer - IBM - and his previous employer - Mentor Graphics - are corporate members of the Stanford Center for Professional Development. This membership provides their employees with direct access to a variety of professional and graduate programs that can be completed online or on campus. While working at Mentor Graphics, Fakhry earned a certificate in Stanford's Advanced Project Management program. Completing six required courses helped him develop the skills to execute business strategies effectively. Now at IBM and enrolled in a graduate certificate program at Stanford, he is designing his own plan of study at the intersection of policy, management, and technology. He must complete four courses from a list of required and optional courses to obtain the graduate certificate. He appreciates the flexibility that Stanford provides for working professionals, and he says you can't beat the caliber of both professors and students at Stanford. "Stanford is one of the best choices for its high educational quality and world class reputation."

The classes he has taken have had a direct impact on his job at IBM. Fakhry supports the IC design and manufacturing industries of IBM's fast growing product lines. He serves in a leadership role giving in-depth technical support and advice to customers and application engineers. And he is responsible for conducting competitive product evaluations and preparing and delivering product presentations and demonstrations for customers, seminars and trade shows. Through mathematical models and engineering case studies, Stanford's classes have better equipped him to understand the economics and finance, decision and risk analysis, policy and strategy, and production and operations management components of his work. The project management experience has helped him become integrated within the team and learn IBM systems rapidly. His supervisors have noticed his new skills and have recognized his abilities to collaborate and communicate with other teams to get the job done.

"Stanford SCPD courses helped me to understand complex modeling processes which include defining, organizing and managing projects - internally with engineering teams and externally with customers," he says, "and to work closely with product marketing teams to communicate the value and benefits of new features and capabilities." Fakhry has learned to interact effectively with team members who work remotely or are in different time zones, and he knows how to create priority management plans, calculate critical paths, and follow up on project dependencies as a result of his learning at Stanford.

The flexibility and support provided by Stanford was particularly helpful. Juggling work, school and family, life is anything but slow. "Having 24/7 access to the course material including lecture video streaming definitely helped me," he says. "I believe this is one of the great characteristics of Stanford's program compared to other distance-learning programs."

Not one to stand still, he is excited about the next step in furthering his education, earning a master's degree in management science and engineering from Stanford. Not only does he believe that the master's program will help him deal with the difficult decisions he faces every day in his job, but it will provide him with even better management skills. "Stanford's MS&E master's program, which combines the fields of management and engineering, is truly suited for advancing my career as an engineer and beginning my official training as a manager."

No doubt his father would be proud.