As we continue to celebrate 10 years of the Bachelor of Business Administration: Sustainable Business Practices program, we look back at one of our alumni – Michael Savarie – whose interest in a different way of doing business led to a sustainable career he loves.
Michael Savarie grew up in Cranbrook and was always interested in attending College of the Rockies. The location, cost and smaller class sizes helped to cement his decision to choose the College to begin his education.
He first intended to major in Biology but after his first year, he realized he was more interested in the business field. After discussing his options with a variety of College instructors, he changed his focus to major in Marketing.
Michael then moved on to the Bachelor of Communications program at Thompson Rivers University. After completing his first semester, he realized the College’s Bachelor of Business Administration: Sustainable Business Practices (BBA) was a better fit for him, so he returned home to College of the Rockies.
“The great thing I found about attending College of the Rockies’ BBA program was the level of one-on-one communication I got with all of my professors,” Michael said “If I ever had a problem, in class or out, it was easy to ask the teachers either in class or when I’d run into them in the hallways.
“When the BBA in Sustainable Business Operations first started at the College, I wasn’t really sure what sustainability was. After learning more, I quickly saw how important it is to the entire world. I am thankful that the College was able to create a degree program that was new and exciting and something that is very relevant today. Completing a program that focuses on what a business can do to be sustainable has really helped me be a leader amongst my peers.”
After graduating from the BBA program, Michael set off on a new adventure – living and working in England and the South of France. While in France, he realized that he wanted to continue to learn about sustainability.
Michael is now attending graduate school at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia in their Masters in Sustainable Design program and is working in a graduate research role as the Sustainability Associate for a fashion start-up in Philadelphia called Hemp Black.
“After learning about how much of an impact the fashion industry has on the world, I decided to focus my thesis on how the industry could move away from the use of cotton and incorporate the use of hemp, one of the most sustainable plants in the world,” he said.
Once he graduates, Michael hopes to stay on with Hemp Black to help lead their sustainability efforts.
“Sustainability is something that should be important to everyone,” he added. “To some, sustainability just means being an environmentalist but in reality it is not only about the environment. Sustainability is about making sure that the people, culture, and environment are able to all successfully work with each other to function as a profitable business.”
Michael is grateful to College of the Rockies for introducing him to the concept of sustainability and for igniting his passion for sustainable business practices.
“It is a great opportunity that students have by attending College of the Rockies,” he said. “While it may be a small school a lot of alumni have accomplished great things in the world.”
We look forward to seeing what other great things Michael accomplishes.