Continuity is Key: JCU Alumna Paola Scotto di Frega
Born in Naples, Italy, Paola Scotto di Frega graduated from John Cabot University in 2013 with a major in International Affairs, and a minor in Economics. Paola is currently building a career in Business Continuity at PANTA RAY, a position she found thanks to the JCU Career Services center.
What made you decide to study at JCU?
Until 8th grade, I attended the International School of Naples (the city in which I was born); for high school, I studied in an Italian Liceo Classico. Having experienced both systems – the American and the Italian one – I decided to continue my studies with the former, as I believe it is more efficient and fits my personality better.
What motivated you to pursue a career in business continuity?
Business continuity is the practice of planning solutions for possible disruptions that may arise in a business. Before working at PANTA RAY, I did not even know what business continuity was because this area is still not widely known in Italy. I discovered, however, that it is a rapidly-growing field. In a fast-paced world, where customers are increasingly demanding, companies may not be able to afford a business interruption that might jeopardize their reputation and/or their ability to provide products and services. Working with leading national and international clients in building their business’ internal resilience is both challenging and rewarding.
I really enjoy my current position because of to the stimulating work environment. Imagine working in a company where people are valued, and there is continuous exposure to exciting experiences and projects both in Italy and abroad. What more could I ask for?
What do you find most challenging about your job?
The most challenging part of my job is, by far, transmitting the value of business continuity, and conveying the consultant’s important role to clients.
We will never be substitutes for our points of reference within the organization we are working for. This is because owners are ultimately responsible for the continuity of their businesses processes and organizational resilience as a whole. We are there to help build a resilient organization rather than provide a temporary fix. However, this goal may only be achieved with the client’s commitment.
What advice would you give to students considering JCU?
My suggestion is to take full advantage of campus life and choose courses in which you feel less confident. I, for instance, deeply regret never taking Public Speaking because it could have helped me with my current job.
Do you have any advice for graduating students?
Three main pieces of advice. Develop your soft skills; in many cases, you will be able to pick up technical skills on the job. Do not focus your job search on big multinational companies, most times they aren’t as cool as they may seem. Find an organization, small or large, where you are valued and recognize opportunities to grow. Use your job as a mean to focus, practice and achieve what you really like. Tailor your job so that it fits your interests and personality, not the opposite.