Graduating Twins Share a Major and a Business

Monday, April 17, 2017

by Molly Grab ’17

Matthew and Tyler Eads ’17, identical twins from Collegeville, Pennsylvania, will both graduate from SJU with degrees in business intelligence and analytics (BIA) this May. The Eads, who have roomed together, taken classes together and even started their own business together over the past four years, didn’t always plan on attending the same college.

“I never had a preference about going to school with my twin,” says Matthew. “It was something that just worked out.”

Changing to the same major during freshman year was also unplanned. Matthew was a marketing major while Tyler was studying accounting when they both took Intro to Information Systems with Ruben Mendoza, Ph.D., assistant professor of BIA. The course inspired both of them to change their majors.

“I knew I wanted to switch into business intelligence and analytics after that class,” says Tyler. “It was just so interesting.”

After that, the Eads brothers became active in the BIA department, boasting strong academics and involvement in numerous clubs. Matthew has been named to the Dean’s List multiple times; is a member of the Business Information and Technology Society (BITS), the Tableau User Group and the American Marketing Association; has worked as a Best Buddies volunteer; and also interned with Tokio Marine North America Services.

Tyler, who has also been named to the Dean’s List numerous times, is a member of BITS and the Tableau User Group. He also interned with the HEADstrong Foundation for cancer patients, where he contributed to the nonprofit’s marketing and graphic design efforts. The twins also took part in SJU’s first BIA Johnson & Johnson Case Competition.

One of Matthew and Tyler’s most impressive achievements is a business they created and manage together: EadsGraphic, a design company that provides clients ranging from local businesses to Division I athletes with custom promotional graphics.

“Sophomore year, we were just doing some Photoshop for friends,” says Matthew. “One of DeAndre’ Bembry’s friends said he’d be interested in making a game-day graphic to post on social media. We designed one and Deandre’ posted it.”

According to the twins, that graphic quickly spread online and EadsGraphic grew from there. Even Snoop Dogg once reposted one of their designs, which gave them exposure to more clients. Now EadsGraphic regularly works with Yale Athletics and NBA teams.

Running a company while completing their undergraduate degrees has been a challenging but rewarding experience for Matthew and Tyler.

“I learned time management,” Tyler says. “Some weeks, I’ll have three tests and also a design deadline. But it’s an amazing experience getting to work with our clients on a daily basis.”

Kathleen Campbell-Garwood, Ph.D., assistant professor of BIA, who taught Matthew and Tyler Data Mining, is confident that EadsGraphic will continue to grow.

“Matthew and Tyler are smart and hardworking,” says Campbell-Garwood. “Their talents are slightly different but blend well, making this endeavor something that could be very successful.”  

Within the BIA department, the twins are not only known for these entrepreneurial skills. Their identical appearance is also a familiar challenge to their professors. Even Campbell-Garwood needed a trick to tell Matthew and Tyler apart.

“I cheated,” Campbell-Garwood says. “I found that Matt had a freckle on his left ear and I used it to full advantage to always tell who was doing what in class.”

The Eads, who have already accomplished so much together and separately as undergraduates, have much to look forward to after graduation. Matthew has accepted a position as an audit associate in KPMG’s Data and Analytics practice in downtown Philadelphia, and Tyler will be joining the Associates Program at SEI Investments in Oak, Pennsylvania. For the twins, however, graduating will be a bittersweet experience. Though they’ll still be living together, it will mark the first time in 22 years that they’re going in separate directions.

“It’ll only be for 10 hours a day though,” Matthew jokes. “We’re easing into it.”

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