MBA Education Path to Diversity Scholar Profile: Candace Hargrave

(One of a continuing series of profiles of participants in the MBA Education Path to Diversity (P2D) Scholarship Program, which enables employees from diverse backgrounds to advance their professional growth and career development.)

MBA NEWSLINK: Tell us about yourself.

Candace Hargrave

CANDACE HARGRAVE: My name is Candace Hargrave and I am Director of Secondary Marketing & Pricing at First Tech Federal Credit Union in Portland, Oregon. I have been with First Tech for the past 10 years, servicing primarily in the Secondary Marketing & Pricing role; first starting as an Associate and working my way up through Manager roles and ultimately into my current role as Director for the past four years.

My main responsibility includes managing mortgage loan pricing and profitability for the Credit Union, oversight to all loan sales (participation, whole loan, mandatory, etc.) and managing mortgage loan file quality through our Quality Control program. Outside of my responsibilities at work, I love the great outdoors and find myself hiking as much as possible and traveling to various National Parks to hike as well.

NEWSLINK: How did you learn about the MBA Path to Diversity Program?

HARGRAVE: Through some of our MBA partners, Brad Padratzik and through the previous School of Mortgage Banking courses I have already completed (SOMB I & SOMB II).

NEWSLINK: What inspired you to become more involved? Did a co-worker/supervisor/mentor encourage your participation?

HARGRAVE: The reason I chose to get more involved with MBA was through some encouragement of a supervisor, as well as fellow classmates from my previous courses. I love to continuously learn; whether that is educational or to obtain a new skill. MBA has many opportunities that I look forward to participation in to accelerate my growth in my current role.

NEWSLINK: Did you find the application process to be user-friendly?

HARGRAVE: The application process if very straight forward; the hardest part was trying to convey my passion and experience with limited word count.

NEWSLINK: How has the Path to Diversity scholarship benefited you, personally and professionally?

HARGRAVE: The scholarship opportunity has helped validate the growth in my role; starting out in an industry that I was not familiar with, I had to start from the ground up from a knowledge and skill perspective. It has always opened up my eyes to opportunities I never originally considered and helps me feel like I am part of something bigger.

NEWSLINK: What have you been able to bring back to your company as a result of the Path to Diversity program?

HARGRAVE: The most immediate impact the Path of Diversity program has brought me is to share my story with fellow colleagues on the opportunities MBA offers. As well as the ability to receive designations and certifications that some may feel that are not able to obtain. MBA truly wants to help you succeed in your career; I appreciate the scholarship granted to me and look forward to utilizing it in order to obtain my AMP (Accredited Mortgage Professional) designation.

Through the various courses I have attended, I have also brought back more knowledge in areas related to my immediate field, as well as areas that I don’t primarily support (Compliance/ Regulatory guidance).

NEWSLINK: What would you say to someone considering applying for a Path to Diversity scholarship?

HARGRAVE: Take the time to do it. You won’t know unless you try, so even if you have fear or doubt in your ability; the process of applying for the Path to Diversity scholarship will show you how valuable you are. You just need to take the final step to click submit and show your value to industry partners.


About the MBA Path to Diversity Scholarship Program

The Path to Diversity Scholarship Program recognizes existing industry professionals who are seeking to advance their careers through continuing education. Recipients receive a voucher to cover course registration fees, up to a maximum of $2,000, for popular MBA Education courses and designation programs. This education opportunity enables employees from diverse backgrounds to advance their professional growth and career development.

MBA recognizes that a strong, responsible and sustainable real estate finance industry requires a workforce that is reflective of our society at large.

For more information about the Path to Diversity Scholarship Program, click