The Yale School of Management has named Abigail Kies assistant dean for career development, with responsibility for the school’s Career Development Office (CDO.) Kies, who has served since 2016 as the CDO’s deputy director of career education and coaching, assumes her new post with plans to deepen Yale SOM’s career resources and to leverage its global connections.
“We have a very unique opportunity here to further develop the Global Network for Advanced Management on the career front,” Kies said. “Through its member schools, the network has already built out a very solid foundation academically. The question now is ‘How can we create a career component?’”
Identifying more international job opportunities for students is just one of the initiatives at the top of Kies’ agenda. Others include fostering better cooperation within Yale SOM while engaging potential employers through channels such as campus talks and other student events. “A lot of this is already happening, but we want to make it more seamless for the students,” Kies said.
Kies also plans to build the CDO teams so that they are nimble enough to allow students to explore career paths that best suit their individual goals and expose them to an increasing number of innovative opportunities across a wide variety of industries. “It’s really important for us to make sure that relationships with employers are as broad as possible,” she said.
The ongoing challenge for MBA career offices is how to utilize the two years that students are on campus so that they land in positions where they’ll thrive and be fulfilled, Kies said. “The question is always, ‘Are we giving them enough opportunities to explore?’ It’s always going to be a balance at a business school. There’s so little time and so much that students want to accomplish.”
Kies brings robust experience to the CDO. As deputy director of career education and coaching, she led the office’s student-facing team, providing individual coaching to MBA, EMBA, and MAM students. Before coming to Yale, Kies led the Career Center for Working Professionals at New York University’s Stern School of Business.
Kies has also worked as a leadership coach and consultant and has worked in consulting at the Mitchell Madison Group, in marketing at American Express, and in financial services at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. She holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and a bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University.
Kies was recommended by a search committee that included senior staff members, alumni, and students. Two members of the Yale SOM Alumni Advisory Board’s CDO Committee, Lauren Balk Hope ’86 and Michael Barker MFA/MBA ’10, and two Student Government representatives, Nate Whipple ’18 and Maanya Condamoor ’18, met with the finalists and provided feedback to the search committee.