February 19, 2020


Embrace change. Take risks, but be smart.

Those were the central themes during Break Through’s panel, Start-Ups: The Culture of Entrepreneurship.

The panel featured four Susquehanna alumni: Sara Jane Luley ’08 Baublitz, Phil DiMuro ’12, Kelly Gardiner ’09, and Gabrielle Stahl ’18.

Baublitz, DiMuro, and Gardiner originally started with a corporation, but made the switch to a startup later in their careers.

“Changing from a cooperation to a startup depends on your field,” Baublitz said. “You need to have an understanding if there is an opening in your field to take that opportunity.”

Stahl joined Careerlist, a startup that works to make recruiting processes more efficient.

“I bought in for my leader,” Stahl said. “The leader is the person who is going to drive the force. Being able to work alongside the CEO is a huge benefit because I get a say in what the mission and vision is going to look like.”

The panelists also highlighted the importance of researching a company — including its financials — before making the jump from a corporation to a startup.

“Crunchbase.com is a great resource to research the funding information of companies,” DiMuro explained.

Baublitz credited her liberal arts education with giving her the broad knowledge base she needed to be flexible in the industry.

“When you a receive a liberal arts education, you can be so many things for a company,” Baublitz said. “Susquehanna also helped me create a network by making authentic relationships with people.”

Gardiner said her PR courses emphasized the importance of creating relationships through effective communication.

“PR is a people business,” Gardiner said. “It’s key to be able to understand behaviors based on how they’re communicating.”

Julianna Innocenti ’22, a management major, attended the panel.

“Just hearing the advice from the alumni about their different paths was really valuable because it teaches you that even when you have a different idea, it’s okay to change it,” Innocenti said.

About Break Through

Break Through helps Susquehanna students to network and develop contacts with alumni and other professionals in their chosen fields. Each year in February, alumni converge on campus for the student-alumni networking conference. Alumni offer career-specific panel discussions, money management advice, résumé tips, online branding and more. Break Through is organized by Susquehanna’s Career Development Center.