Chuck Konrad

photo of Chuck Konrad

  • BA in Psychology (1989)
  • director of global technical recruiting and veterans programs at Palo Alto Networks, a cybersecurity company
  • played on the Miami football team

My Profession

Chuck Konrad (Miami '89) feels that what he loved about psychology is that he could use that degree regardless of what he wanted to do after college.

"Studying human behavior made sense to me," Konrad said. "Whatever you do is going to have to deal with people."

Konrad is currently the Director of the Global Technical Recruiting & Military Veterans Program at Palo Alto Networks, cybersecurity company. He also runs global talent acquisition.

"After I got out of school, I realized that I wanted to do something very people-centric," he said.

Following graduation from Miami, Konrad fell into the world of recruitment and realized it was exactly what he wanted.

"It was an opportunity to help people, an opportunity to leverage what I learned about human behavior, an opportunity to build a company, build a business," he explained.

Konrad has now been in recruiting since 1990 and enjoys every part of it, and he is indeed applying what he learned as a psychology major.

"It's all about human behavior," he said. "It's about talent assessing and the different ways to assess talent, then how do you hire people, how do you motivate them to do certain things. Having a degree in psychology helps to understand how people act and why they are doing certain things. And once you understand that, it helps you to truly understand how people operate."

This is certainly true in the business world, where it is important to study people and understand their behavior. Konrad said that in recruiting there are many potential pathways.

"I ran my own search firm for 19 years, so that's certainly a route that one can take," he said.

He added that psychology majors can work for an outside search firm or similar kind of company, and there's a lot of different things that one can do in executive recruiting.

Best Miami Experiences

Having been born and raised in California, seeing Miami's Oxford campus for the first time is one of Konrad's most profound memories of Miami.

"I was blown away," he said. "There's nothing like Miami in California, so the way I described it to my friends was: it looks like college on a movie set!"

Konrad played for the Miami football team as a kicker in the 1987-1988 season.

"Building long-lasting relationships with my coaches and my teammates has really been a blessing for me," he said.

Konrad visited Miami this past August and says that it is still the same Miami — a fantastic place to be, though it has changed from the time he was here.

"The new psychology building is spectacular," he said.

Miami's liberal arts program exposed Konrad to many different things. Having access to so many different topics and fields really enhances students, he said, and especially helps those that come in not knowing what to study.

"There's a lot of value in that," he said. "Students come out of this program very well rounded."

Advice to Students

Konrad acknowledged that it's not always easy to find your professional niche or calling.

"Keep an open mind and make sure you explore everything!" he said.

He also advises students to not be afraid to explore different opportunities. By embracing their opportunities at Miami they'll end up finding the right thing.

"Miami graduates have a brotherhood and sisterhood that I've never seen in any other university's alumni," he said. "The connection that Miami graduates have regardless of when you graduated is  unique."

Finally, he suggests that new Miami graduates seek out to other Miami grads at the companies they're targeting.

"They will embrace you and would definitely do everything they can to help you," he said. "There truly is a Love and Honor brotherhood!"

[October 2018]