Among members of The Consortium community, Dan Magnia holds a special distinction.
In 2008, he became a Consortium fellow and an MBA candidate at Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business. The following summer, he went to work as an intern for Danaher, which, at the time, was not a Consortium corporate partner.
A year after that, Magnia went to work full-time for Danaher and, while working as a leader in university relations for the company, helped to lay the groundwork for a corporate partnership with The Consortium that came to fruition in 2015, when now Vice President for Global Diversity & Inclusion Ernest Adams pushed it over the finish line.
Meanwhile, Magnia has served as the alumni representative on The Consortium’s board of trustees since 2015—alongside Adams, who is a corporate representative on the board. And when Danaher spun off Fortive as a separate company in 2016, Magnia became its director of corporate human resources and helped to forge a partnership between the new company and The Consortium.
“Danaher had seen a lot of returns from the relationship with The Consortium,” Magnia said. “The opportunity to gain similar returns continued to present itself as a strategic initiative for Fortive.”
Student. Active alumnus. Corporate partner. Recruiter of new corporate partners. Board member. Magnia has worn a wide variety of hats as a member of The Consortium community.
Introduction to The Consortium
Magnia first heard about The Consortium from a cousin—Otto Petty—who was an alumnus of Indiana’s Kelley School of Business. Magnia was coming off a seven-year tour in the U.S. Army and was interested in business school.
“I distinctly remembered him telling me to set my sights a lot higher than they were. He told me to research the Consortium,” Magnia said. With a military career, he’d never interviewed for a job. He’d never had to network or worry about being recruited for a job. He had never really been exposed to corporate America.
Getting into Dartmouth and The Consortium was a great accomplishment—but just the start of a journey that began with the Orientation Program & Career Forum. “I was blown away by the sheer number of opportunities afforded to Consortium members,” he said. “I was certainly not prepared for OP.”
Now, he urges new students to approach OP as a time of exploration and to chase experiences rather than job titles. “That’s something I really strive to convey to incoming students,” he said. “I took it as an opportunity to explore. I did interview, but by no means was I confident in what I really wanted nor what kind of company I wanted.”
He says he feels fortunate the represent the student perspective on the board of trustees. At the same time, he watched Danaher yield tremendous results by beginning relationships at OP with incoming MBA students who later became interns and, eventually, full-time hires. Magnia saw similar prospects during Fortive’s first year as a Consortium corporate partner.
One big challenge is finding ways to distinguish Fortive’s business model and culture from Danaher’s.
“With that goal in mind, we were largely successful by finding ways to engage with Consortium students on a more intimate level,” Magnia said. “We have been very pleased with the results of our first OP. We’ve extended 14 offers to students. I’m confident we’ll yield the majority of them with the intentions of converting them into full-time hires.”
Now, with his sights still set high, Magnia continues to chase experiences with the goal of leading a company—a goal he suspects is within reach, thanks to the opportunities he’s gained through The Consortium, Danaher and Fortive.
“Danaher and Fortive have allowed me to prove myself,” he said. “A lot of what a CEO or a business owner does is solve people problems. What makes me a more effective HR leader is that I’ve come up through this business.”
Pictured above: Dan Magnia—alumnus, student, board member and corporate partner of The Consortium—speaking to students at the 2015 Orientation Program in Phoenix. Photo by Brian Treffeisen.