Doug Booth grew up in Plymouth, Indiana, not far from Notre Dame. “I did a campus visit at Notre Dame and it was not a fit for me. I came down to Purdue one time and knew this was where I wanted to go.”
It took one visit to Purdue to start Doug on a path toward attaining a degree in Management from Krannert, getting a pilot’s license through Purdue’s Department of Aviation Technology and earning a Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation through Purdue’s Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship.
It’s accurate to say that Doug made the most of his time at Purdue. A trumpet player, he joined the Purdue Band as a freshman and earned a spot as a student leader as a sophomore. He received a Purdue Band scholarship his junior year, which he used to pay for flight lessons. “I never would have guessed that coming to Purdue and joining the band would enable me to get my pilot’s license.”
Doug’s curiosity for the intersection between business and technology was discovered early. A class in Management Information Systems (MIS), taught by Roy Dejoie, developed that interest. “Dr. D, He really was passionate about what he taught and I think that passion just spilled right over into me.”
Doug credits his MIS classes with preparing him for a career in the information technology area of business. “Database Management and Systems Analysis and Design, those two classes really prepared me well with a general coding background. It’s not as deep as CS, but it gave me the broad overview I need to manage a project effectively.”
Earning his Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation was another achievement with unexpected benefits. Unlike other universities, Purdue’s Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation isn’t just for business students. “Here it’s open to anybody, which really broadens the classroom,” he says “Being able to work in teams with engineers and philosophy majors on innovative projects, it’s really a great experience.”
Doug enjoyed the program so much that he became an Entrepreneurship Ambassador, touting the program to other potential students. A friend and fellow Ambassador had interviewed with ExactTarget, a small technology firm in Indianapolis that caught Doug’s eye. After completing an internship with a large Fortune 500 company, Doug decided that the corporate path was not for him.
He contacted his friend at ExactTarget and was able to arrange a tour. “It was incredible. I got there and my reaction was very similar to the one I had when I visited Purdue. It was a perfect fit.”
ExactTarget has grown from its initial three founders to more than 1,600 employees. Doug was so inspired by the culture and company that he turned down a generous employment offer before ExactTarget even began interviewing on campus.
In addition to the offer from ExactTarget to join its Information Technology team, Doug was offered an Orr Fellowship. The prestigious two-year fellowship encourages high-achieving graduates to accept positions with high-tech startups in Indiana.
Although he could have accepted more lucrative offers, Doug believes his job at ExactTarget, accompanied by the Orr Fellowship, will be a great experience and an investment in his future.