Dayna McCue

Hometown: Franklin, MA

Alma mater: Connecticut College

Major: Economics and Government

Current Role: Associate Marketing Analyst (Chicago)

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role?

I started in the MDP program in July 2020 as a Customer Support Representative on the Direct team.

What led you to this current role?

I had a great opportunity to learn about Marketing through a stretch project!

What is a typical day in your current role?

A typical day involves analyzing membership data from the previous day/week/month to identify trends for our individual investor products.

Did you participate in any stretch projects?

Yes! I had a marketing stretch project, which ultimately led to my role, participated in IMRAP on MIM, and took over projects on the Direct support team in order to improve the functionality of support’s CSAT survey. I am also involved in the MDP Ambassador Committee.

What advice would you give your first-year self?

I would tell myself to make as many connections as possible throughout Morningstar whether that’s by doing stretch projects or coffee chats or joining different groups! Take advantage of all Morningstar has to offer and be open to all opportunities that come your way.

How was it like starting your MDP role in a virtual setting?

Starting virtually was interesting; I would have loved to meet all my co-workers in person and have the “typical” MDP onboarding. However, I think Morningstar did a wonderful job of making all the new hires feel welcome, supported, and comfortable in the virtual environment.

How has Morningstar helped you in this pandemic?

Morningstar has provided great support during the pandemic. The company recognizes the hardships that have been a result of COVID-19 and provides ample resources to help us succeed like comping WFH equipment, providing access to online health services, and weekly questionnaires about our wellbeing.

One piece of WFH advice?

Stand up and get outside for a short walk if it’s nice out!

Hannah Pelfresne

Hometown: Libertyville, IL

Alma Mater: University of Wisconsin-Madison

Major: Strategic Communications and Reporting with certificates in Business Entrepreneurship and Digital Studies 

Current Role: Software Product Marketing Associate

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role? 

I started MDP in September 2018 on Managed Portfolios Client Support within Morningstar Investment Management.  

What was your next position? What led you to this role? 

I moved into software product marketing in September 2019. I knew I was interested in marketing and began meeting with various associates to gain a better understanding of different sectors of marketing. I met with the associate for software product marketing team and was intrigued by what she was working on, so I met with other members of her team.

What is a typical day in your current role? 

A typical day for me includes attending various meetings focusing on larger initiatives and working on actionable items from those meetings. My team collaborates well together so I enjoy working as a group! I am also our Scrum Master so I lead our scrum/agile meetings as well.

Did you participate in any stretch projects or ERGs? 

I participated in a stretch project developing SEO criteria and evaluating our global sites against that criteria for the editorial team. We presented this in a content showcase to show simple ways to organically improve SEO. I also am currently in IMRAP through the editorial team.

What advice would you give your first-year self?  

I’d recommend having coffee chats with as many people possible to gain a true sense of your interests. Enjoy spending all day with your friends and make time for a good laugh every day.

What is your favorite Netflix binge?

That 70s Show! My favorite movie, The Departed, is also on Netflix.

Caroline Finnegan

Hometown: Duxbury, Massachusetts

Alma Mater: Skidmore College

Major: International Affairs, Arts Administration

Current Role: Digital Marketing Associate (Chicago)

When did you start the MDP program and what was your role?

I joined the MDP program in September 2018 as a member of the Commodities & Energy Client Service Team.

What was your next position? What led you to this role?

In July 2019, I joined the Digital Marketing Team as an associate. I had a feeling I wanted to end up in marketing, but was not sure where, specifically. I worked on a stretch project in Product Marketing, which introduced me to members of the Digital Team. Through that, I quickly learned that I enjoyed analyzing data and using that data to collaborate with other marketing colleagues to produce campaigns that would positively increase revenue as well as improve the user experience.

What is a typical day in your current role?

Although I just started my new position, my days vary based on the projects I am working on. I attend meetings with various members of the marketing department (product marketing, brand, content, and design), conduct research and testing for new and existing campaigns, brainstorm ways to improve our digital presence, and work closely with designers to edit pages on our website.

Did you participate in any stretch projects or ERGs?

I participated in a Software Product Marketing Stretch Project where I conducted competitive research for Direct and Office Cloud. I enjoyed the project as it exposed me to the competitive sphere that Morningstar operates within and allowed me to improve my research skills. I am also a member of the Mornignstar Women’s Initiative (WIN) Community Outreach Committee. Every other week we have lunch together and think of ways in which Morningstar can give back to the community. One project involved working with students from After School Matters to help them create elevator pitches. It’s really fun and a great way to meet your co-workers!

What advice would you give your first-year self?

I would definitely say to keep an open mind, even if you think you know exactly what you want to do. That, combined with networking, will allow you to really consider what type of path you would like to pursue. The phenomenal culture at Morningstar allows you to explore different business units and ultimately land in a position that will allow you to grow.

What is your best travel story?

Many would view this as an unpopular opinion, but when you’re a Patriots fan and you see Tom Brady in Capri, the trip is immediately the best trip ever.