For Wadzanai Dzvurumi (MBA), a fall 2020 graduate of Texas Woman’s College of Business, research is the key to success. During her time at TWU, not only did she have the opportunity to serve as a graduate assistant, but she was also a vital member of a research team and will apply everything she learned to her. future career.
Dzvurumi was born and raised in Zimbabwe and decided to follow her father’s example by studying in the United States
“My father had the opportunity to study abroad and he wanted to extend the same opportunity and exposure to my siblings and me,” she said. “It was a privilege that I was lucky to have. Many are inspired to study abroad, but not everyone has the opportunity to do so.
Dzvurumi received her BBA in Marketing from Midwestern State University in Wichita Falls, Texas, but knew she had more to learn. TWU’s inspiring environment and rigorous MBA curriculum have proven to be a perfect fit.
“I wanted to have the experience of attending a university for women, to be surrounded by other female minds and leaders,” she said. “It was an inspiring journey to see women empowered through education, a right that was not granted to women some 50 years ago, and even to this day in some parts of the world.”
Although Dzvurumi enjoyed many aspects of the MBA program, being able to conduct research has been the most rewarding experience for her. Her work as a graduate assistant to several faculty members introduced her to different aspects of research, including conducting qualitative interviews and research and data analysis.
This experience led Dzvurumi to be invited to work on a research project with Assistant Professor at the College of Business Jason Lambert, PhD, as well as Assistant Professor Gabrielle Smith, PhD, in the Department of Psychology and Philosophy, and Paul Yeatts, PhD, biostatistician in the Center for the design and analysis of research. In the first phase of the project, the team investigated the moderating effects of awareness of stigma on responses to diversity in recruitment advertising. They presented their findings at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSS) conference in New Orleans last February.
The second phase consisted of interviewing women in symbolic positions. According to Dzvurumi, a token is a person who represents 15% or less of their organization. Tokens are the minority members of an asymmetric group where there is a large majority and a very small minority. The team wanted to identify the barriers that female tokens face and the strategies they use to mitigate those challenges. They have also studied beliefs related to the symbolic process and the organizational attractiveness of homogeneous forms and plan to use the data to develop strategies to help women in symbolic positions.
Even though the work was often long and tiring, for Dzvurumi every minute was worth it.
“Conducting research and being part of a research team enriched my educational experience and broadened my focus,” she said. “It involved a lot of learning, exploring uncharted territory and critical thinking, but most of all, it was meaningful. “
Dzvurumi’s goal is to work as an organizational psychologist, and she believes the experiences she gained at TWU have prepared her well for her career path.
“We spend most of our lives at work, so I want to be able to help organizations and employees create healthy workspaces and navigate the ever-changing work dynamics, as we are now seeing with the coronavirus.” , she said. “The MBA program coupled with the research I was able to do definitely endowed me with the knowledge and human capital for the next step.”