A Career of Life-changing Opportunities
Jenny Shull has the heady title of Innovation Manager at Samsung Electronics America, but her time with Samsung didn’t start on such a lofty note.
“I learned how to write HTML and spent the summer manually transferring all content from one website to another,” said the California native, recalling her first summer with Samsung as a college intern.
Despite its pedestrian nature, that experience was the start of a remarkable career marked with opportunities Jenny never imagined.
Two weeks after graduating from Duke, Jenny joined Samsung as a full-time employee with the Information Tech Division in Irvine, California. After six months as a marketing coordinator there, she made the move with the division across the country to be housed in the North America headquarters office in New Jersey. Then after about four years as an events manager, Jenny was unexpectedly called into the HR office.
“I thought I was getting laid off,” she said. But what happened instead was quite the opposite.
HR offered her the opportunity to participate in a 2.5-year global scholarship program in Korea where she would earn an MBA then work for a year at global headquarters in Seoul.
The catch? She had two days to decide.
“It was crazy!” she said. The better part of that evening she spent on the phone with her parents, boiled down to something like this:
“No way!” said dad, who wasn’t about to let his little girl go overseas when he had been trying to get her back home to Southern California.
“It’s a free education!” said mom, who missed her little girl just as much but knew this was an opportunity she couldn’t let her pass up.
Mom won. And Jenny was off for an adventure of a lifetime.
Everything, at first, was foreign to the young woman with limited international experience. So much so that she admitted to living off familiarity – coffee and chocolates – for a week; but she soon embraced the incredible opportunity for what it was.
“That was just another life-changing experience that really opened my eyes to what else was out there,” she said, “and how really big a company Samsung is.”
Upon completing the program in Korea, Jenny came back to New Jersey as a marketing manager, but it wasn’t long before she was on the move again. Within 10 months , much to her family’s delight, Jenny crossed back to the West Coast to join the Product Innovation Team in San Francisco where she now helps expand Samsung’s research capabilities to bring the most innovative and useful products to the American consumer.
“It’s the constant challenges and knowing that I’m constantly growing that’s kept me at Samsung for so long,” says the Samsung veteran who recently celebrated eight years with the company. “You’re not going to find a more challenging atmosphere that’s only going to make you better in the long-run.”