Category: Undergrad Information

The Business of Being a Husky: Becoming a Leader at Michigan Tech

Group of students stand in front of Chicago's "Bean".
Emily (fourth from left) stands with other American Marketing Association members along with Professor Junhong Min (far right).
Emily Kughn stands in front of a Michigan Tech sign
This blog is by Emily Kughn, marketing and management dual major, and student ambassador.

Back in 2018, the summer before my senior year of high school, I began looking at colleges. I remember getting an email from a strange place called Michigan Technological University. My dad informed me that “MTU” was an excellent university, and we decided to come for a campus visit. Little did I know that when we made the 534-mile trek up to the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan Tech would become my home for the next four years.

I’m really proud of my path in college—I began as an overwhelmed first-year student far from friends and family, and grew into a person who welcomes challenges and changes. I attribute this success to my willingness to try new things and numerous leadership positions on campus. 

“I grew into a person who welcomes challenges and changes.”

Emily Kughn, Michigan Tech business student

My Leadership Experiences

Some of the leadership positions I have held as a Michigan Tech student include: treasurer of the American Marketing Association; Young Women Leaders Program mentor; Orientation Team Leader; College of Business teaching assistant; house manager and overall Winter Carnival chair for Delta Zeta sorority; and Women’s Rugby Club public relations chair, president, and captain.

I am grateful to attend a university that provides students with so many opportunities to be involved, stand out, and lead. Michigan Tech’s size is perfect—you will never feel as if you blend into the crowd, and the different ways and possibilities to develop into a leader on campus are endless.

“Michigan Tech’s size is perfect—you will never feel as if you blend into the crowd.”

Emily Kughn, Michigan Tech business student

If you don’t know how to get started on a path to leadership, my advice is to start making connections: 

  • Say hi to people in your classes.
  • Meet with your professors during their office hours.
  • Attend free campus events.
  • Go to K-Day in the fall.
  • Join student organizations (before holding a leadership position in a student org, you must first become a member).

Also, nobody becomes a leader on their own. It happens as a result of learning from mentors and being built up by those around you. I am fortunate to have had so many people on campus assist me in my path to leadership, including Michigan Tech Marketing Professor Jun Min. From my first time meeting him, he instilled passion in me, made it known that he believed in me, and was always there for advice and mentorship. Every student within the College of Business is lucky to have professors who go above and beyond their job description. They truly care about their students’ leadership development. 

Leadership Lessons

Photo of the Michigan Tech Women's Rugby team

Michigan Tech Women’s Rugby Club gathers for a team photo after conference playoffs.

My involvement has taught me so many lessons and developed me into a strong leader. The Women’s Rugby Club is one student organization that I have been a part of since my first semester here at Tech, and I credit it with developing me into an all-around better person.

In life, I think it’s extremely important to find something you are passionate about. It is much easier to develop into a leader when you have a strong passion for the subject at hand. In college, my passion has become rugby. When I first became a captain for my team, I struggled to speak up and feel like my voice mattered. Despite facing adversity, I kept learning. Over time, my confidence grew and I learned how to be a strong leader. To me, leadership will always be done by learning, empowering others, and building them up. I am so proud to say that in my last game as a captain, we took home some hardware (for the first time) by placing fourth in the conference playoffs in Oshkosh, Wisconsin! Michigan Tech and the College of Business have helped to foster these leadership experiences. As I look forward to graduation in April, I am thankful that I can take all of my leadership lessons with me into my career and personal life. 

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, business analytics, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.

The Business of Being a Husky: Three Ways I Balance Life in College

By Henry Basala, accounting with data analytics and MIS dual major and student ambassador

Balancing academic demands and personal wellbeing is one of the most difficult tasks students face while attending college. With classes, homework, clubs, work, and beyond, sometimes it seems like there aren’t enough minutes in the day. Especially at such a prestigious university like Michigan Tech, Huskies handle a demanding course load. This is why it is important to find the right mix of school and personal life. Here are three ways I balance life at Tech:

Three people pictured hiking
Blog author Henry Basala (right) recharges with friends during a homework hike break.

Take Breaks

One way I prioritize my mental well-being is by taking breaks. As simple as it sounds, this is critical for me. It’s easy to get caught up doing schoolwork for multiple hours straight. While it is necessary to complete lessons, taking a break from doing my accounting or studying for MIS exams is crucial for keeping a steady head during the hectic semester schedule. Some ways I like to take breaks include watching Netflix, playing Wii with my friends, or scrolling social media.

Ask for Help

This is something I took for granted at first—asking for help is one of the most important tools to thrive as a college student. Everybody struggles, everybody fails at times, and everybody has bad days. Michigan Tech has a Center for Student Mental Health and Well-being as well as staff and professors who are eager to help you. Whether it is homework support or just someone to talk to, reach out for help when you are struggling. There will always be someone here for you.

It is pivotal to use the resources you have to help you in times of need.

Henry Basala, Michigan Tech accounting and MIS student

Establish Wants and Needs

Another way I like to manage this tricky task of school-life balance is by prioritizing my wants and needs. While at college, your school life and personal life will sometimes conflict. There will be times when you want to go out, but need to do school work, and times you want to do school work and need to take a break. Identifying wants and needs will help you find the right groove of both to balance your time in college.

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, business analytics, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.

The Business of Being a Husky: Why Join a Michigan Tech Club or Organization?

Members of the Michigan Tech chapter of the American Marketing Association
Photo of Mary Stevens, MTU student
Blog author Mary Stevens is a Michigan Tech marketing major and student ambassador

Michigan Tech has more than 200 registered student organizations and clubs to choose from. Getting involved in a variety of these groups across campus has helped me find my home at Tech. During my first semester, I decided I wanted to be a part of Greek Life and joined Delta Phi Epsilon, an international sorority based on the values of justice, sisterhood, and love. One element I really appreciate about my sorority (and Greek Life in general) is the emphasis on community service. I’ve had opportunities to volunteer and truly make a difference in our community that I wouldn’t have had otherwise. I’ve also found a support network within the sorority, and the alumni relations are a huge benefit when looking for jobs and internships.

I’m also a part of the American Marketing Association (AMA) at Michigan Tech, a faculty-led student org, which is open to students of all majors. The goal of AMA is to prepare Huskies for the professional business world through education and practical experience, including on-campus marketing campaigns, Google Analytics projects, and business skills competitions. The American Marketing Association provides networking opportunities, too. I’ve had the chance to meet leaders in business from all walks of life, most of whom went to MTU themselves. It’s inspiring to hear their success stories, as well as get to know them on a personal level.

My professional circle has expanded exponentially because of my involvement with the American Marketing Association. 

Mary Stevens, Michigan Tech marketing student

In addition to Delta Phi Epsilon and the American Marketing Association, I play in the renowned Huskies Pep Band. Along with the social opportunities at school events and sports games, students involved with Pep Band and other musical organizations are able to use their talents to audition for more exclusive scholarships. We also get to be at almost every athletic event to support our teams. What I love most about Pep Band is the camaraderie. Everyone was friendly and welcoming the moment I walked through the door, and I’m always excited to see my Pep Band friends on and off campus. 

Overall, there are hundreds of reasons to join an MTU club or organization. From community service and an everlasting support network, to learning practical skills and supporting your fellow Huskies, each organization has something special and unique to offer. When you join a club, it can lead to so much more than just a few activities on weekends. It can lead to you meeting your future best friends or landing a scholarship to help pay for school, and, of course, finding your home at Michigan Tech. 

Every fall, American Marketing Association advisor, Dr. Junhong Min, pictured far right, travels with students to a marketing competition and career fair.

About the College of Business

The Michigan Tech College of Business offers undergraduate majors in accounting, business analytics, construction management, economics, engineering management, finance, management, management information systems, and marketing, as well as a general business option. Graduate degrees include the TechMBA®, a Master of Engineering Management, a Master of Science in Accounting, and a Master of Science in Applied Natural Resource Economics.

Faculty-Led Study Abroad Returns for 2023

Group of students in orange vests pose during a plant tour
Beck’s Brewery tour in Bremen, Germany

A group of Michigan Tech students participated in an inaugural faculty-led study abroad trip to Germany over the summer. Ulrich Schmelzle, assistant professor of supply chain and operations management in the Michigan Tech College of Business, led a group of eight Huskies to his hometown of Hamburg. This once-in-a-lifetime tour will have a positive impact on students’ future careers, and will return as a study abroad option for summer 2023.

“One of the objectives of the Germany experience is to prepare students for careers in a globalized and interconnected business environment,” says Schmelzle, who has two decades of international industry experience in semiconductor and aerospace fields. Increasingly, recruiters emphasize the need for students to develop intercultural skills and awareness about different business etiquette when dealing with business partners across the globe. 

AMA-zing Results: Tech Students Place in Regional Marketing Competition

Picture of American Marketing Association group of students standing in front of AMA step-and-repeat backdrop.
Competition day! It was a busy and full day of hard work for the Huskies.

Michigan Tech American Marketing Association (AMA) students attended the largest regional AMA conference and competition at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater October 6-7. AMA is a community of marketing thought leaders and scholars seeking to propel business growth and elevate the role of marketing.