MBA Education Path to Diversity Scholar Profile: Ashley Duffy

(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.

Ashley Duffy

ASHLEY DUFFY: I am a Senior Mortgage Loan Processor with Alterra Home Loans. I have been with the mortgage industry for nearly four years. In that relatively short period, I have fallen in love with the underserved communities my company puts first. They took me on as a green loan officer assistant, where I quickly fell in love with helping underserved communities, notably members of the minority community, break the renting cycle and begin to start their exciting new chapter of building wealth through homeownership. The most fantastic part about my job is how exciting each day is as each loan has its own unique set of challenges, and every family has its own needs. I love that as a company; we always come together to find ways to help every individual that is serious about homeownership.

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

DUFFY: Jason Madiedo, our CEO, is fantastic about extending and creating opportunities for us to grow professionally. He notified our entire company that there were scholarship opportunities available should anyone wish to apply.

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

DUFFY: I have always been an extremely goal-driven individual. Alterra supported my professional growth by providing mentorship opportunities you can only get from a company our size. We have an open work culture that allows employees to develop a close relationship with management. The work I was doing almost immediately clicked with me. As a proactive individual with an insatiable desire to learn more, I knew Alterra is where I wanted to be. Alterra gave me opportunity after opportunity to learn from seasoned loan officers, processors, underwriters, and even upper management themselves. I had leeway to ask as many questions as I wanted and experienced a plethora of teaching moments that allowed me to continue to learn and grow. Recently, the world’s cutest cheerleader has been driving my motivation to a whole new level. I just became a first-time mom to my rainbow baby and NICU miracle, Valentina. She is my loving muse that patiently listens till she falls asleep as I read her the curriculum from the underwriting education courses, I am taking presently. I thank the scholarship MBA has awarded me. More than ever, I wish to push harder to set a strong example for her so she knows limits are things we impose on ourselves and nothing more.

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

DUFFY: The application was extremely user friendly. I appreciated its simple and straightforward format.

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

DUFFY: I have chosen to take the underwriting coursework. It has been very exciting to learn how our underwriters look at files and need to think. Relating to an underwriters perspective allows me to prepare files as a processor and anticipate needs upfront, so our clients and loan officers receive better care. I am a knowledge junkie and genuinely like learning for the sake of learning. I may be the only one who finds reading government guidelines in their few hours of free time fun, but I cannot say our clients and my company won’t benefit from that bit of weirdness on my part.

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

DUFFY: Having an opportunity to further my education allows me not just to grow but also to pay it forward. Just as Alterra helped me learn about the ins and outs of the mortgage industry, I now get to learn new ways to help answer my co-worker’s questions and be there with increased experience and know-how when I am called upon to assist.

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

DUFFY: Just do it! If you want to better yourself, there is no reason NOT to apply. This scholarship will not only allow me to better my life and my family’s life but will enable me to contribute more to my company and its clients by expanding my education.


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