Michael Di Dio is not one to sit idle. The Orfalea College of Business senior from San Ramon has been involved in several startups throughout his college career as well as played on 26 intermural teams. He has involved himself with the American Marketing Association, Cal Poly Entrepreneurs, Center of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Executive Partners Program, Financial Management Association and Cal Poly Investing Club.
“My involvement in multiple startups while being a student have played the biggest role in my professional development. I have learned more than I could ever imagine going through several stages of team building, financing and building of business models, and it has been a blast.”
In addition to involvements with startups, Di Dio also landed an internship last summer with Roseman Wagner Wealth Management, which has since offered him a position following graduation. Di Dio has maintained an early financial background while concentrating in marketing and minoring in industrial technology.
Di Dio credits his successes to those around him, crediting his roommate, co-founder, mentor and professors.
He names Kathy Wright, his mentor through executive partners, as having an extraordinary influence on his four college years. “She has helped me figure out what exactly I want to do and constantly volunteers her entire available life to helping her students out.”
Jeff Hess, his marketing analytics professor, taught him how companies value their customers in a way that was refreshing and really spoke to Cal Poly’s Learn by Doing motto.
Jean-Francois Coget, his team dynamics professor, taught the essentials of team-dynamic skills, skills that he has used in the three years since taking his class and that he anticipates using the rest of his life.
Di Dio credits his knowledge of the essentials of strategic marketing and business management to Benjamin Alexander, his business strategy professor.
It is partially through his mentors and partially through hard work and strategic planning that Di Dio has accomplished so much in his four years here. One of his startups, which has been underway for three years, has had involvement from Microsoft executives and international entrepreneurs.
Di Dio’s involvement in the Orfalea College of Business ambassador program has allowed him to give back to the school while continuing to learn and has given him a voice in trying to improve areas which he felt were somewhat lacking.
Di Dio dreams of one day owning a hedge fund or VC fund that invests in startups that strive to make a positive impact on society.