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Former Bronco soccer player Megan Renaldo nets online master’s degree

Whether on the pitch, in the online classroom or out in the world as a fledgling entrepreneur, Megan Renaldo is all about performing at a top level.

That led the former Boise State University soccer player to graduate summa cum laude with a 4.0 GPA from the online Master of Science in Organizational Performance and Workplace Leadership (OPWL) program in May 2024.

“As a former athlete and a former operations leader, my passion has always been high performance and how to help people achieve high performance,” she said. “I have a business degree and a business background. When I found this degree program and looked at the course offerings, it seemed like a perfect intersection between my experience, my passions and where I want to go.”

In addition to starting a consulting business, Renaldo & Co., in October 2022, she is in her fourth year as an adjunct professor in Boise State’s LEAD Program. Renaldo teaches LEAD 494: Developing and Growing Teams, a course that she designed.

“It was a goal of mine,” she said. “I always wanted to do it. I basically teach adults for a living. I coach. It’s all about leadership, which is what I do. I knew another former Boise State athlete who was a teaching assistant in the LEAD Program. It was organic.”

In addition to working full-time, running a business and coaching soccer at The College of Idaho for two years, Renaldo and her husband, Joe (also a Boise State graduate), had a daughter, Isabelle, while she was enrolled in the master’s degree program.

“The ability to work on my classes at my pace, on my own time, when it made sense for me was so great,” she said. “The only way I could have done this was with the online format. It was way better than I thought it would be.”

Extra time

Megan Renaldo on the field, kicking a soccer ball
Photo provided by Megan Renaldo

Renaldo is from Fresno, California, but she came to Boise to play goalkeeper for the Broncos in 2008. She graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration four years later.

Prior to enrolling in the master’s program, she earned a graduate certificate in workplace performance improvement from Boise State. Renaldo was an organizational development consultant for the City of Boise when she started the graduate certificate in January 2021.

“I was surprised at how awesome the format was once I started,” she said. “I had not done a lot of online classes before [the graduate certificate]. So many things happened in my life during this that made online so much easier.”

The information that Renaldo learned in the online OPWL program was also valuable to her as she was launching her business. Her favorite course in the curriculum was Contracting and Consulting.

“With everything you do in this program, you’re learning, then immediately applying it,” she said. “This class gave me all of the pieces I needed. We did a proposal for what we thought our consulting services would be. I still use that template to this day.

“It was incredible. We had to interview someone who was a consultant. I got so much good information that helped me start my business.”

Renaldo was impressed with the practicality and applicability of the education she gained — especially from the perspective of an adjunct professor.

“In every single class, I was able to take my learning and directly apply it to my career in organizational performance,” she said. “We worked with real clients and applied what we were learning to produce deliverables for our clients. This level of real-world experience was invaluable.”

Save worthy

Megan Renaldo in her cap and gown with her baby
Photo provided by Megan Renaldo

Renaldo is the first person in her immediate family to earn a master’s degree, although her sister has a law degree. She and her husband, daughter and two black labs enjoy spending their free time exploring the Idaho wilderness.

“My family and friends are excited and really proud of me for earning a master’s degree,” she said. “I’m about as connected as I can be to Boise State. Three weeks into the graduate certificate, I knew I would do the whole thing.”

Renaldo said that having an open mind to where the online OPWL program can take you and your career is a key to success.

“There are a lot of options with this particular program,” she said. “One half of the program is instructional design, which was not the part I did. A lot of people go in looking for instructional design and discover the other part of the program, organizational performance.

“You get the most out of it by digging into the fact it is so application-based. You come out of there with things you can use in an actual portfolio to start your own business or apply for a job. It’s so cool.”

Coming home to Boise State to earn an advanced degree couldn’t have worked out better for Renaldo’s career.

“The OPWL program quite literally changed my life,” she said. “I had big dreams of owning my own business and thought about consulting prior to starting this program.

“It provided me with the confidence, education and knowledge of evidence-based practices to make my consulting dreams a reality. The OPWL program was a catalyst to finally taking the leap.”

Learn More About Organizational Performance and Workplace Leadership at Boise State

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