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Rachel Nutini (B.A., 2009), Financial Systems Analyst for VF, LLC. (VF is the owner of many of the brands you know and love, including The North Face, Vans, Timberland, JanSport, Eagle Creek, Lucy, Kipling and others.)

Rachel Nutini had a whole lot going on in her life when she was a student in our department. She was working full-time and — by the time she finished her degree — was a wonderful mother three times over. To say that Rachel excels at managing several things at once is a bit of an understatement.

Rachel works for VF Corporation as a Financial Systems Analyst. Prior to that, she worked for Thrivent Financial for seven years, starting in customer service and working her way up to Senior Business Intelligence Analyst. The experiences she had at Thrivent paved the way for her new opportunity at VF, working in finance instead of operations.

Her job at VF allows her to use her formidable problem-solving skills.”I am tasked with reviewing reports and confirming they match our source systems, and I review processes for efficiencies and improvements,” Rachel tells us. “I work on projects where our business intelligence software will be impacted. I create and improve ad hoc reports in our business intelligence software. I also train users and I love being able to help people get the information they need when they need it.”

Rachel is all about data! While at Thrivent, her focus was on operational data, but that’s changed since she moved to VF. “Being on the accounting/finance side of the world [at VF] is a whole new ballgame. So, it’s the same stuff (data), but different users and processes,” she writes.

How did Rachel get into this career, and how does a political science major end up swimming in so much data? “My path has really been about my love of detail and the big picture,” she says. “I’m constantly drilling into the tiniest details to find the source of problems and then going back out to the big picture to figure out how else this problem may be affecting other areas, brands or reports.” Her advice to our majors? “Don’t be afraid to dig into scary stuff: just because it looks too big or doesn’t make sense at one level, dig in and see if it makes sense at a more detailed level. You can’t focus on one to the detriment of the other. Political Science was the major for me because I was constantly doing this in class: you’re peeling apart big ideas every single day.”

Her favorite memory of being in our department (in the old, then-unrenovated Clow Faculty Tower, no less!)? “Bagel Fridays in Clow hanging out with other PS students talking about life, PS and whatever other random thing came to mind. Sage is beautiful, but Clow is home.” (Do we need to bring back Bagel Friday?!)

In addition to her busy life with VF (plus her cute family [see photo!] and reading/watching “Game of Thrones”), Rachel is the President of our Alumni Council and is a great resource for our students. We strongly encourage you to reach out to Rachel and the other members of the Council for help with networking and finding new opportunities. They have a lot of valuable experiences to share with our students, and we’re so lucky to have them!