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Meet Gabriel Alvarez, MBA '15
Meet Gabriel Alvarez, MBA '15

Baking better bread with an MBA

When Gabe Alvarez was born, his dad started a bakery and named it after him. Twenty-eight years later, Gabriel’s Bakery sells artisan bread, bagels and pastries to every major grocery store in the Portland area, and Alvarez is using his new MBA from Portland State to help run the business.

PSU’s top-ranked, part-time MBA program allowed him to earn his degree while working at the bakery. From his first accounting class, he immediately applied what he was learning to improve everything from the way bread is baked and packaged to the bookkeeping and delivery routes.

The bakery had slowly grown to 14 employees in an organic but haphazard way, Alvarez says, and now he is working to standardize its finances, distribution and operations so it can further expand. The MBA program’s small classes gave him easy access to professors and peers who have helped him along the way.

“A lot of inspiration and ideas came directly from the courses I was taking at PSU,” he says. “It exceeded my expectations for pairing working at the bakery with an MBA. It was a fantastic learning experience.”