Category: Student Spotlight

Networking Equals Career Fair Success for 2011 Woman of Promise

Caitlin Pionke networks to receive job offer at DOW Chemical in Midland, Mich.

Caitlin Pionke jokingly refers to herself as a “business management major who got a job in the IT department at a chemical company.”

Pionke was named the 2011 Woman of Promise for Michigan Tech’s School of Business and Economics and has taken full advantage of the honor.  She is a senior in Management and an active student across campus belonging to Beta Gamma Sigma International Honor Society and the International Business Ventures Enterprise among other commitments.  For her, being selected as the Woman of Promise by the School of Business and Economics, opened up possibilities for networking with the Presidential Council of Alumnae (PCA) and landed her a job at DOW Chemical.

Immediately upon receiving the award this spring, Pionke began attending PCA events and developing relationships. The time she spent networking allowed her to identify helpful people who would best assist her in finding employment. Almost immediately Caitlin noticed how important networking was to her job search. She made contacts with DOW Chemical prior to the Michigan Tech Fall Career Fair and was then able to secure follow up interviews—both on campus and on site in Midland.

When thinking about her job hunt, Pionke recalls, “It was a great feeling walking up to the DOW Chemical booth at the Career Fair and having the recruiter already know me. Not only did they know my name but they had also already reviewed my resume which had been sent directly to them by my contacts in the company.”

Networking undoubtedly played a large role in her success at the Career Fair.  Pionke noted that for her it wasn’t just the day of the Career Fair that was important, but rather Career Fair month.  Prior to the event she sent out resumes to targeted companies and followed up with thank-yous after the fair.  Even though DOW Chemical did not list that they were looking for Business Management majors, Pionke’s networking had allowed her to stand apart from the crowd and prove herself worthy of an interview.

Pionke will begin her new job at DOW Chemical in Midland, MI as an Information Systems Analyst on June 18th.  Our School is happy to report that she is living up to her name as the 2011 Woman of Promise.

Management Information Systems Class Partners with RMS

Business Intelligence students to work with Revenue Management Solutions on a Project to gain real world experience in MIS.

MIS 3400 Business Intelligence is giving students what all undergraduates look for, practical experience in the classroom that can be translated into the real world.  For the first time, students taking this course will have the opportunity to partner with Revenue Management Solutions (RMS) to work on a project proposal and a mock client contract that resembles work being done currently by international consulting firms.  This opportunity has been made available by utilizing Associate Professor of Management Information Systems (MIS), Mari Buche’s, excellent networking skills.  She reached out to Ashley Johnson, a 2008 MIS and Marketing alumna and RMS employee, and the idea for the partnership was born.

Johnson noted that even in the three years since she graduated from Tech, there have been updates to the curriculum to meet industry needs.  This course is particularly advanced because it gets practical experience into the classroom to students from a variety of disciplines.  The students were given a project proposal that is supportive of the Business Intelligence curriculum, and they will compete in five or six teams of three to four students.  All of the groups will be working on the same client contract.  They will each need to present a deliverable, in the form of either a Microsoft Excel decision support tool or web portal, while functioning under a team structure with positions including: consultant, analyst, and developer. A combination of technical and business skills will be required to produce the desired outcome.

Through this partnership, RMS will provide SBE students with a dedicated server, demonstrations of BI applications, and access to project specific sales data for student manipulation. In return, RMS is looking for an innovative data warehouse design that can meet the Tampa-based company’s increased demand for decision support services based on transaction level data.  For this project MIS 3400 students will be required to develop and document implementation of a new data system that fuels business decisions for any retail or restaurant company.  By the end of the semester, each group will have achieved the following objectives:

  • Data Assessment Document
  • Data Dictionary
  • Entity-Relationship Model
  • Dimensional Model
  • Extract-Transform- Load Process Document
  • System Prototype
  • System Proposal Document

This project is still in the early stages, with the students only just being introduced to the project and made aware of the client expectations at the RMS Project Kick-Off event this week; however, Johnson and RMS are excited about the opportunity to work with Buche and Michigan Tech students who are creative and innovative.  I’m sure the feeling is mutual.

Class of 2011 Rocks Deloitte

Danielle Linna (left) and Theresa Laubrick secured jobs with Deloitte LLP before their spring 2011 graduation.

In a time when graduates are struggling to find jobs, two recent School of Business and Economics alumni have secured positions at the world’s largest accounting company, Deloitte LLP. Danielle Linna and Theresa Laubrick, who graduated this spring, earned Bachelor of Science degrees in Accounting, double majored in finance, and graduated summa cum laude. While some time off from their impressive academic accomplishments would be expected, instead they studied for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam and started positions with the company in fall 2011.

Danielle Linna: Passion for Accounting

Danielle Linna found her passion for accounting in high school. “I took an accounting class my junior year and fell in love with it. Since then, I’ve known it’s what I want to do with my life.”

As a student, Linna was heavily involved in organizations across campus. She furthered her business experience in organizations such as the International Business Ventures enterprise and the accounting club Kappa Sigma Iota, and she also completed the Applied Portfolio Management Program (APMP). As a member of the Delta Zeta sorority, the First Year Experience, and the Michigan Tech Dance Team, Linna rounded out her education and built connections across campus.

Linna believes that her wide range of experience and work with engineers and technology students gave her a competitive advantage over other applicants for her position. “Working with people from different backgrounds allowed me to develop a flexible communication skill set, which will be helpful when dealing with clients.”

This fall, Linna started her position as a staff auditor in Deloitte’s Accounting and Auditing Group in Milwaukee. With a minor in German and an interest in international
accounting, she hopes to participate in a program at Deloitte that will allow her to work for two years at one of the company’s international branches. “I want to make
an impact on national and international accounting standards and financial procedures,” she said.

Theresa Laubrick: Hard Work Pays Off

With a double major in accounting and finance and a minor in music and the Enterprise program, Theresa Laubrick shouldered an undergraduate course load that would make a less motivated student collapse. Far from being overwhelmed, she added on as many extracurricular activities as possible. “Students can use the experience they gain from campus involvement and apply it to their futures and careers,” she said.

During her years at Michigan Tech, Laubrick was a member of Kappa Sigma Iota, participated in Concordia Student Ministries, and served as the CFO for the Aerospace Enterprise. She also worked as a writing coach and teaching assistant in the Michigan Tech Multiliteracies Center, citing the experience as an important factor in her personal and professional development.

In her position with Deloitte, Laubrick blends her love of working with people and her technical interests. At the company’s Detroit branch, she works in the Tax Department’s Research and Development Credit Group, where she is responsible for data analysis, write-ups, and generating the tax credit for clients with large R&D
programs, including engineering firms.

In the coming years, Laubrick hopes to shape her career according to words of wisdom from Stephen W. Gilman, the founder of the business honor society Beta Gamma Sigma: “Success is not to be measured by income but by influence, not by power but by personality, not by capital but by character.”

Hats off to Danielle and Theresa for passing the CPA in summer and fall of 2011.

This article was originally published in Impact, the Michigan Tech School of Business and Economics magazine, and was written by Erin Kauppila.

MBA Student Receives Mentoring Scholarship

2012 LSGI Scholarship recipient, Wei He, pictured with LSGI Fund Manager, Joe Dancy during the Fall 2011 LSGI Room Dedication at Michigan Tech.

In partnership with the LSGI Technology Venture Fund, the School of Business and Economics is pleased to announce that former APMP member and current MBA student, Wei He, is the 2012 LSGI Mentoring Scholarship winner. The scholarship is awarded to students who display excellent academic achievement, expresses an interest in finance or applied mathematics, and demonstrates high moral and ethical characteristics.

Ms. He participated in the Applied Portfolio Management Program (APMP) during 2010-2011 and now will provide the 2011-2012 team as well as finance classes with mentoring and support. The current APMP students actively manage, under guidance, $1.3 million of the university’s endowment fund.

During her time at Michigan Tech, she was the co-founder and secretary of the Michigan Tech Finance Club. Last year, as part of the APMP team she attended the 11th Redefining Investment Strategy Education (RISE) forum at Dayton University, Ohio, and her team earned 4th in the balanced investment category. Wei graduated in the major of Finance with Summa Cum Laude and right now she is pursuing her MBA degree at Michigan Tech. She is an active member of the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society and the MBA Association. Wei also achieved placement on the dean’s list every semester.

In her free time Wei enjoys various sports, and traveling both domestically and abroad.

About LSGI

LSGI Advisors Inc. is a Texas corporation that acts as general partner for the LSGI Technology Venture Fund L.P., a private mutual fund for SEC accredited investors. LSGI Manager, Joe Dancy, serves as an advisor to the Michigan Tech Applied Portfolio Management Program, overseeing finance students responsible for managing $1 million of the University’s endowment.Dancy also instructs oil & gas and environmental law programs at Southern Methodist University School of Law in Dallas, Texas.

To learn more about the LSGI Fund, please visit their website.