Posted on November 20, 2020 by Wendy Frost

Artist and musician Joey Berrios , BA ’20 has found a home in the college’s M.S. in Business program.

“When I decided to start my own business and become an entrepreneur, I knew I needed to strengthen my business acumen,” said Berrios, who is retired from the Air Force. “The M.S. in Business program was attractive because it checked all the boxes and was only a one-year commitment.”

His company, At, Ease! Productions LLC, is an independent music and art production company that caters to musicians who are disabled veterans like himself.

“It felt like an appropriate name and transitional theme for people coming out of the military,” he said. “I’ve received positive reactions from veterans. This gives them an opportunity to pursue dreams that they had put on hold while serving their country.”

Berrios credits the M.S. in Business program with helping him launch the company and giving him the skill set to grow his business.

“The acumen I’ve garnered from the program has been crucial,” said Berrios. “With every assignment I receive I try to think how I could apply that knowledge to my business. It has helped keep me focused.”

He credits faculty members Dan Davied , assistant dean of graduate studies, and Albert Huang , lecturer I in management, with providing the greatest impact to his education. “I admire compassion, and they are both very compassionate,” he said.

And while he is the only artist in the program, he finds the mix of educational and personal backgrounds of his classmates to be refreshing. “We’ve developed a lot of camaraderie, even though we’ve had to connect digitally.

“The pandemic knocked a lot of things out of order for others, but 2020 has been good for me,” he said.

In addition to founding his own company and attending graduate school full time, Berrios works for San Antonio Sound Garden, a nonprofit focused on music education for at-risk youth.

Always ready to pursue new opportunities, Berrios has several goals he still wants to accomplish after he graduates next spring. First, he’d like to apply the skills that he has learned to expand his work with San Antonio Sound Garden. He also wants to continue his education or pursue certification opportunities in an area like music marketing. Finally, he would like to transition his company into a nonprofit so it can aid even more veterans.

“This graduate program is the most difficult thing I’ve done, and I’ve been deployed to foreign countries and worked as a medic,” said Berrios. “But, this program has been the springboard to my success.”

— Wendy Frost