Tennis star serves notice with two Hough degrees

After graduating from the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in Public Relations, Anastasia Revzina admitted that earning a specialized master's degree from the Hough Graduate School of Business was never in her plans.

So why did she earn two specialized master's degrees in consecutive years?

“I know, I know,” Revzina said. “It's a little crazy.”

A little crazy, maybe, but the former Gator tennis player said she wouldn't want it any other way.

Revzina's journey to the Hough Graduate School of Business began when she accepted the position of public relations specialist for peerFit, a Gainesville-based, health-technology company co-founded by four UF alumni, including three Warrington graduates (Scott Peeples MBA '12, Matt Redinger MBA '12 and Rex Tullius BABA '10). Revzina was tasked with numerous duties not necessarily in her job description, which is often the norm at a startup.

“I got to do everything,” said Revzina, 25. “When it's a startup company, one day you're mailing out posters, the next day you're writing a business plan. It was crazy, but it was one of the best experiences. I learned a lot from the guys.”

Revzina's time at peerFit inspired her to learn more about business. In winter 2011, she researched various master's programs and decided Hough's Master of Science in Management program (MSM) was the right choice for her. But when she finally decided on the MSM, the program's admissions deadline was fast approaching. She had one week to take the GMAT, supply her recommendation letters and provide the proper paperwork, which can be cumbersome for international students like Revzina, who was raised in Moscow.

“My GMAT score was good enough and I got all my recommendation letters in,” Revzina said. “A week later, I got accepted and a whole new world started for me.”

Revzina said she was pleasantly surprised how much she enjoyed learning about business.

“I didn't think I'd like accounting, but I loved it,” Revzina said. “One of the toughest classes I took was Finance II, but it was one of the best classes I took too. I loved it. I can't say it was easy, but they make it fun.”

As Revzina was completing the MSM program, she said the job market looked bleak and she didn't see any worthwhile career opportunities. So she turned her focus on Hough's Master of Arts in International Business program (MAIB). The MSM and MAIB programs share nine credits allowing Revzina to focus on electives in areas that interested her like finance and entrepreneurship. The emphasis on those areas, plus her international background and love of travel, made the MAIB a smart fit for her.

“I thought MAIB was even more competitive,” Revzina said. “In MSM, no one had a business background so we're all at the same level. But in MAIB, you had people with backgrounds in finance and accounting. You have to prepare even more.”

Although equipped with two master's degrees and professional experience, Revzina is putting her business career on hold and pursuing a professional tennis career. She is currently playing on the International Tennis Federation pro circuit.

“I love tennis,” Revzina said. “I've been playing it for 20 years. I have my whole life to sit in an office. My background and two masters are not going to go away. I'm still young. Why not try it?”