As a high school student in New Orleans, Louisiana, Peyton Fine was struggling with a difficult choice: attend Harvard or the University of Notre Dame. He ultimately selected Harvard, where he earned an electrical engineering degree. When he graduated in May 2017, he had a job waiting for him in the Chicago office of Boston Consulting Group (BCG).
But once again, the allure of Notre Dame entered his life.
“My brother, Patrick, was a junior at Notre Dame at the time and was really enjoying his experience,” Fine remembers. “And my other brother, William, was coming in as a freshman. I knew I wanted to go into business, so the MSM program offered me the chance to experience Notre Dame with my brothers while also further preparing for my career.”
Fine was accepted into the MSM program, and Boston Consulting Group allowed him to defer his job for one year. It would be a year full of family, music and an intensive business education.
“Band brought us together.”
In Fall 2017, Fine and his two brothers played together in the Band of the Fighting Irish—Peyton on the saxophone, Patrick on the trumpet, and William a member of the snare drum line. “I had the most incredible experience,” Fine says. “Traveling to Michigan State, to Orlando for the Citrus Bowl, marching down Main Street in Disney World and in the Citrus Bowl Parade—those are experiences that we all got to share.”
Fine has also been able to share the business student experience with Patrick, a junior accounting major.
Peyton has been impressed by the academic rigor of a program The Economist recently ranked third in the nation and believes it has prepared him to assume his responsibilities at BCG in the summer.
“The most significant skill from the MSM program that I will take with me to BCG is my knowledge of understanding a company's financials,” Fine says. “Between our work in accounting and finance, I can now examine a company's financial statements to understand the true nature of a company's operations and how those operations impact the financials.”
Fine believes the value of a Notre Dame education extends well beyond the classroom. “You initially look at Notre Dame’s graduate business school because of its academics, reputation and ranking, but the reason that you should come here is beyond all of that,” Fine says. “You come here for an education that is grounded in something far bigger than marketing strategies or accounting books—you come here for an education that focuses on doing good with your business education and creating community with those around you.”
The MSM Cohort Community
Fine found a built-in community at Notre Dame—not only with his two brothers, but in his 45-student MSM cohort. “We take all of our classes together, which has been one of the best experiences. Having a group of people that you’re with six hours a day, you form a community within the broader campus community that is pretty indescribable.”
Fine liked his fellow students so much that he plans to live with a few of them next year in Chicago when he accepts his position with BCG. And of course, he’ll be just a short train ride away from his two younger brothers.
But there’s a chance that the Fine legacy at Notre Dame could extend beyond Peyton, Patrick and William. The two youngest Fines—Michael Paul, an eigth grader, and Kathryn, a sixth grader—have both already visited campus. “Even if they aren’t thinking about college yet, they’ve been thoroughly indoctrinated with all of the traditions,” Fine says.