James (Seldric) Blocker

James (Seldric) Blocker

EMHRM '18

Executive Master of Human Resource Management

New York, NY

Where are you from?

Columbia, SC, but I lived in Charlotte, NC for 12 years after undergrad.  I currently live in New York, NY

How or why did you decide to come to Cornell for the EMHRM program?

I’ve worked in HR for 15 years, but mostly on the specialist side within Campus/Talent Acquisition.  I actually used to be the Graduate Recruiter for the HR Development Program for a former employer, where I hired a number of Cornell ILR students.  After 15 years of working in HR, I made the decision to commit my future to the HR profession, but I needed to broaden my experiences and figure out new ways to influence change.  A Masters in HR would help me with that and I only wanted to go to the best HR Program around.       

What are some highlights of the program?

The Professors are so knowledgeable, yet so friendly and approachable; I have been amazed at their sense of humor too.  I am in a cohort of leaders from various industries and backgrounds, so I learn so much from their experiences alone.  Meeting the cohort and being on campus the first time was exhilarating! I’ve made lifelong friends and I know that I am forever a part of the Cornell history and legacy!

Describe your experience of working online.

At first I wasn’t sure if I would like the online component, but my secret is printing the course transcript, watching the pre-recorded lectures and following along as I take notes.  I travel extensively, so the portability of the coursework content makes it easy for me to read on the subway, on a flight, in a hotel on vacation, my office and at home.

What is some advice for someone who is looking to do the EMHRM program?

Even if you feel that things are hectic at work, don’t worry.  Some of the stresses and drama at work make for the best contributions with the discussion boards and for some of the best analysis on the assignments. 

Where do you work?

NBCUniversal in New York, NY  I am Director; Talent Acquisition - Campus Programs.

How has the program helped you in your current role?

The program has helped me understand my company’s business strategy within our industry.  I find myself thinking more strategically, responding to challenges more thoughtfully and I have a new sense of confidence at work.