Honoring Dr. Cinthia B. Satornino


Dr. Cinthia B. Satornino

Assistant Professor of Marketing

Northeastern University

Boston, MA

Dr. Cinthia B. Satornino is an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Northeastern University. She earned her PhD at Florida State University and her MBA from the University of Florida. Cinthia has taught the principles of Marketing to undergraduates since 2011, and has been nominated for the FSU College of Business teaching award. As a professor, she brings her corporate and institutional experience into the classroom, and provides students with a real-world view of the marketing field. Her teaching style incorporates current events, interactive activities and games to help students engage with and connect with the concepts. Cinthia also has an active research pipeline, and has coauthored several publications, including a recent publication in the Journal of Marketing that earned the 2016 Excellence in Research Award from the American Marketing Association’s SalesSIG and the 2016 Ronald Copeland Best Paper award. Her research focus is on examining how social systems and social structures impact customer and firm outcomes. She was a recipient of the AMA and Sheth Foundations’ New Faculty Research Grant for 2015 and was recently recognized as a 2016 Emerging Scholar by Diverse Magazine. She is currently the co-Chair of the Committee for Hispanic Excellence in business, a PhD Project/White House initiative. Her industry experience includes more than a decade as a strategic planning and CRM professional. Cinthia is a founding partner of Cordoba-Parsons, a consulting company.

Why did you choose to become a professor?

While there are many motivating factors for becoming a professor, a few stand out. One was the desire to mentor students before they became working professionals. I served as a mentor to young professionals throughout my career, and I really enjoyed that aspect of my job. I hired a lot of new graduates in the hiring process, and I encountered a lot of new graduates that weren’t as well prepared as they should be for their entry into the workplace. I wanted to help. I had this notion that the most efficient way to reach as many future leaders as possible was to head back to college as a professor. But in reality, these thought may have never fully manifested into a PhD if it had not been for the PhD Project crossing my path. The PhD Project instilled in me a sense of mission. I felt inspired to convert the dream into a reality, and felt that the journey was a part of a much bigger movement, a responsibility to pay it forward, to serve as a role model and to actively seek to mentor students. The PhD Project gave a direction to my ambition. If it wasn’t for their intervention, I might not have ever transitioned from my professional life into an academic one.

What resources (programs, tools, etc.) were available to you throughout your journey into teaching?

The PhD Project supports underrepresented minority doctoral students by providing them with access to a network of like-minded individuals who are also navigating the academic journey. I was able to connect to incredible mentors across the academy. It is this social support, preparation, and education we receive as members of the Project’s Doctoral Student Associations that allowed me to successfully navigate the challenge of earning a PhD, and becoming an effective teacher. I also had champions in my doctoral program at Florida State University, like the chair of my dissertation committee, Dr. Mike Brady, who is an award-winning teacher. He is dedicated to mentoring underrepresented minority doctoral students, and strongly emphasizes the importance of being an effective teacher. He set the bar for what it means to be effective, engaging, and dedicated in the classroom.

What do you love about teaching?

There’s that moment, when a student sits in your classroom, or your office, and you’re talking about their future, or their aspirations, or their challenges, when their face lights up with new knowledge, or a path that has opened up for them, or a new perspective they’ve uncovered. That is the greatest moment for me. Being a teacher, you have the unique opportunity to help someone find their true path. How lucky we are to be a part of that experience!

When you were a student, was there a great teacher who inspired you?

Dr. Henry Tosi was a professor at the University of Florida, where I earned my MBA. He broke every erroneous preconception I had about academics and the world of academia. I never would have imagined that I would fit into the academic world, but he showed me that you could be different and still be successful. He showed me that it was an exciting, fun, and rewarding path. He was the first to plant the idea in my head that maybe it was a path I could follow.