Staying on the cutting edge a challenge, New business schools catching on to sustainable teachings


By Jeanne Pengelly, Axiom News

Published 2.22.13

The trend toward sustainable business practices is pushing the transition to a cleaner, greener world. It is also creating a challenge for cutting-edge business schools such as Presidio Graduate School.

Presidio MBA alumna Mary Solecki, who now works with Environmental Entrepreneurs on policy and advocacy in the field of renewable resources, says one of the energizing things about being part of a vital movement is that the landscape is always changing, coming into clearer focus; one of the challenges is keeping the change agenda moving forward.

“Certainly the greatest advantage and challenge Presidio faces is its cutting-edge role in advancing business sustainability practices. That's a strategic advantage for Presidio, but it's also a constant challenge to remain competitive, as other schools may catch up,” she says. “We have to continue to transition ourselves to offer something unique.”

Solecki's connections from her time at Presidio are still current, even though she graduated in 2009. She said the school offered her the chance to revisit her core values, to explore the field of renewable energy (she'd been in corporate sales for the ski industry), and to make changes.

“I quickly realized that was what I wanted to do with the rest of my life,” she says. “I was hooked, realizing how much there was to know and how much there was to immerse myself in in the field of sustainable business.”

She has since grown a small part-time contract with Environmental Entrepreneurs into a hefty full-time advocacy career.

She still returns to her alma mater, though.

“It brings me out of my tunnel vision and back up to the conceptual level,” she says. “I consistently count on the Presidio community to keep me apprised all that is going on in very related fields.”

But, she warns, there is no time to be lax in forging forward with cutting-edge education.

“Another student said it to me so well. As much as you can come out of a program being able to do the operational work, you still don't completely get it until you immerse yourself in it. That's where the value of Presidio lies – in helping us understand, at the core, how leveraging the Presidio experience can help change the world," said Solecki.

Axiom News provides journalism services to Presidio Graduate School. To read more news stories, click here. 

Jeanne Pengelly, Axiom News

We want to hear what you think.
Send your feedback and comments to

Related Articles


Alumni Profile - Erin Decker

MBA Alumna Erin Decker (C10) talks about her work as the Sustainability Manager for This video is part of...


Q&A with Professor Audrey Davenport

This is the first in our Q&A series with Presidio faculty, students, alumni, and staff. Stay tuned for more great...


The Long Now Seminar Series: Saul Griffith

The Long Now Foundation is a wonderful Bay Area organization dedicated to promoting long-term thinking. Recently they made a generous...

Know a future Presidian who might like this?

Share this story

Chat now