DMSB '01

Connecting Business and Nature

“You just have to open yourself up to the Northeastern experience,” says David Fatula, DMSB’01. “I tried to do as many things as I could at Northeastern…I did so many things that expanded my own understanding of myself, emotionally. A lot of going away to school is grounding yourself in the person you are. I found myself in a way that helped me be successful, and I don’t know if I would have found it otherwise at another school.”

Fatula, who currently resides in Arlington, Massachusetts, has felt a connection to nature and the outdoors since childhood. While an undergraduate student, he was a member of the Northeastern Hiking and Outing Club (now known as NUHOC) before receiving degrees in entrepreneurship and finance from the D’Amore-McKim School of Business.

But after working in real estate investment for the majority of his career, Fatula began to ponder about a way where he could combine work with his passion for the outdoors. “I recognized how much being outdoors meant to me, so when I decided that I wanted a career change,” he says. “I wanted to give something to people that they might not already have.” Thankfully, he already had some experience within that realm—mostly through partnering with local gym owners to lead group hikes through the White Mountains in New Hampshire.

Using the skills he acquired after obtaining his dual business degree from Northeastern, Fatula left the world of real estate investment in 2021 and laid the framework for what would eventually become Guineafowl Adventure, a group hiking company with a focus on sustainability. Fatula credits Northeastern’s co-op program with helping him find the courage to start this venture, by saying that “the ability to work real jobs and then apply what you learned every six months in your classes…extracted the value of what you’re here for, and put me in the mindset to start a business.”

Fatula knew launching a business, however, requires courage and grounding in the face of adversity. To combat this, he leaned on the Northeastern network and the university’s generous community by attending on-campus events and reaching out to the Alumni Relations department for promotional support. “Northeastern is pretty unique with the opportunities it presents,” he says. “Recognizing the opportunity you have and taking full advantage of it is the best thing you can do with [the Northeastern community].”

In the two years since the launch of Guineafowl Adventures, Fatula is proud to say they have grown exponentially, with their sights set on even more expansion in the next three to five. They recently hired their first full-time employee, and have trips booked from the greater Boston area to White Mountain hikes every day going into the summer season. “I want this thing to grow organically over time…yeah there’s risk involved, but with the support I have [from my family and Northeastern], I finally have the opportunity to do what I love for a living.”

Learn more about Fatula and Guineafowl Adventure by following them on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn. You can reach out to Fatula via his website.

I tell people all the time, the one thing that I would never do differently in my life is the Northeastern experience.”

David Fatula, DMSB’01