Business Balancing Act: Former Jewelry Intern Sparkles

Stacey R. Borden '06

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Stacey R. Borden ’06 was not letting her new suede Coach bag hit the wet ground outside Leverett’s aptly-named “Fall Fest”. Not over her hurt body.

“She tripped and threw her body underneath the bag so that it didn’t [sic] get ruined,” said her roommate Gavitt A. Woodard ’06. “She had that bruise on her knee for weeks.”

But Borden doesn’t just throw herself into the enterprise of purse-saving. The same level of intensity has made her extracurricular life pretty successful, too.

Take her sophomore year summer internship. While every other motivated Harvard student went after the i-banking and accounting jobs, Borden wanted something a little more special. So she literally went for the gold—by cold-calling Harry Winston, New York’s jeweler to the stars. During her summer as the company’s first and only intern from Harvard, she was able to work with Barbara Walters and the Moroccan Royal Family. Now, she’s even working on a special project for Rod Winston, the CEO.

Her determination has also helped her rise through the ranks at Harvard—she is now the president of Women in Business (WIB). This past fall, she oversaw the first ever Intercollegiate Women’s Business Conference at Harvard. “There were over 400 girls, with a bunch from Pittsburgh who needed places to stay,” Borden said. “There were more than 30 e-mails a day just about the conference and lots of long phone conversations.” But even as she ran around trouble-shooting, she had another thing on her mind: business school apps were due that week.

She somehow succeeded in balancing an overfilled Gmail box, hundreds of ambitious pant-suited college businesswomen, a frustrating rainstorm, and dreaded grad school essays. All of her applications were in on time, and, she said, “The conference was a success.”

Borden’s success in the extracurricular realm hasn’t even taken a toll on her social life.

“I really like to go out,” she said, giggling. During reading period last spring, the government major turned 21. Faced with a stack of policy books, she refused to lock herself in her room. “We went out to bars three straight nights,” Borden said.

Her ability to balance work and play now bodes well for her plans to juggle a career and a family. It’s something her mother, a teacher who took off 22 years to raise a family, didn’t do. “I want to be as good a mom as she was,” Borden said, but she thinks she can do that and still have a high-powered job. “She thinks she could have raised just as successful and happy children working. She thought it more fulfilling to take time off,” Borden said. “I want both—a career and a family.”

If Borden can successfully juggle internships, friends, schoolwork and WIB at Harvard, it seems like she will be able to balance a successful career and a family. Borden really might be able to have her cake and eat it, too.

Except, of course, a healthy knee and a clean suede Coach Bag.