Hiring Merage Graduates Shapes the Future of Business and Barbie

January 25, 2024 • By The UCI Paul Merage School of Business

As the “Barbie” movie took the world by storm over the last year, you’ve likely seen the work of Constance Toulemonde (MBA ’22) on popular products throughout stores.

Toulemonde is an associate manager of consumer products at Mattel, the company that owns the Barbie brand. She played a critical role in the development of toys and other Barbie items that have pervaded shelves following the film’s release.

Toulemonde’s journey perfectly encapsulates the strong alumni network of the Merage School. After leveraging connections for opportunities at Mattel, she has continued to give back to the program that helped her by mentoring students and connecting them with positions at her company.

“I love to connect and share my story with the hopes that it can help others take ownership of their career journey,” she said. “Giving back to this program that helped me is so important. There’s always more you can do.”


Benefitting From Merage Network

Toulemonde was able to quickly land the position after earning her MBA because she leveraged the strong alumni connection at the Merage School to get an internship at Mattel focusing on the Barbie global brand.

By taking advantage of the school’s network to aid with her internship search, Toulemonde was able to gain valuable experience at one of the world’s largest toy companies. She also learned more about what kind of work she enjoyed while putting together a strategy for their direct-to-consumer business.

“I was able to work on very interesting projects during my internship that got me touching every segment within the Barbie team,” Toulemonde said. “I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to go back to Mattel after I graduated.”

In addition to the alumni network, Toulemonde said she also acquired a diverse set of skills at the Merage School that prepared her for her current role. Because the curriculum touched on many subjects, she has a solid base in many areas that weren’t her focus, including finance and contracts. She specifically noted that she appreciated taking legal classes that have helped prepare her for contract negotiations.

“I was really happy to be able to challenge myself and take classes that help set a framework for critical thinking that has helped me be successful,” she said. “Merage is really great for setting that solid base you need for business.”

Toulemonde also took advantage of all the extracurricular activities that are available at the Merage School, including clubs and other leadership opportunities.

“These really helped put me in a position to lead in my current position at Mattel,” she said.


Giving Back

Since she benefited from alumni support, Toulemonde is dedicated to being a supportive alumna and mentoring students. Whenever new or prospective students reach out, she has regularly connected, shared her experience and offered guidance. Toulemonde has also played a crucial role for recent alumni and students who have received offers from Mattel.

In particular, Toulemonde connects with international students because she went through similar difficulties while adapting to life in the US after growing up in France. She said that international students tend to need more support because of how complicated it can be to adapt to US culture and the business world.

“I want to give back and make sure I’m supporting the program that supported me,” Toulemonde said. “That’s how the Merage School community is, it’s built around that kind of support.”

Toulemonde said she will continue to stay connected with the Merage School. As the representative of Mattel at the Merage School, she views it as a mutually beneficial relationship to help mentor students and bring them to her company.

“While I am able to help them, I’m also able to continue learning from the program,” she said.

We warmly encourage our alumni to connect with our Career Center if they have Full-Time MBA (FTMBA) or other opportunities available for our students. Your support is invaluable in shaping their future success. Please reach out to to share these prospects and join in fostering the next generation of leaders.