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Getting The Best Of Both Worlds

My name is Molly Head and I am a senior at Northwood University, majoring in Operations and Supply Chain Management with a minor in Health Care Management. This summer I worked as a supply chain intern for Henry Ford Health Systems (HFHS) in Detroit, MI.

Part of my time at HFHS was with the Cath Lab Supply Chain team, consisting of directors, analysts, consultants, managers, and clinical staff. The Cath Lab is a fast-paced environment in which medical supplies are quickly needed. As we implemented a nomenclature tracking system to address locating inventory quickly, our team encountered recurring products that were expiring before they could be used. These products totaled around 2 million dollars creating a lot of waste that the hospital was taking on. To reduce this we worked closely with the Director of Cardiology to discuss what products his department truly needs. Although many products had no usage within 6 months to two years, and are very costly, the Director explained the necessity of keeping those products in stock at all times. This is what sets hospitals apart from other supply chain industries. In a hospital, not having a certain product can make a difference between life and death for a patient. Even though this creates a necessary waste for the hospital our department was able to implement a process I designed for handling short dated (expiring soon) supplies. This process included working with suppliers and other HFHS departments to reduce par levels, a more careful examination and tracking of ordered inventory, and transferring or returning inventory before it has expired.

My biggest role at HFH was in the OR. In 2016, an employee accidently over-ordered 2.8M in surgical inventory. Over a year later there was still almost $800K in unused inventory, $30K of which was now expired, creating excessive waste, not only monetarily, but also in valuable storage space. I took the initiative to manage these products and had a goal to reduce the overstock by 30%. By the end of my internship I had not only achieved that goal, but surpassed it and was able to reduce the inventory by roughly $300K. I did this by collaborating with vendors, and other departments, hospitals and clinics within the HFHS, to either return low usage products or by transferring them to other departments.

I found that even though HFHS is a well-run hospital it still has inefficiencies, inadequate processes, and waste within their supply chain department. Nevertheless I saw a lot of brilliant and hard-working people who were coming together to make tremendous changes in the health care industry. Henry Ford Hospital allowed me to sharpen my communication skills, to build my confidence, and expand my network by giving me opportunities to work various levels of department staff and vendors.

When it comes to the healthcare industry technology and clinical practices are ever-changing, quickly making current supplies and processes obsolete. I was able to learn how to handle these changes by helping manage conversions, trials, and product changes. This internship also taught me how to coordinate the needs of one department with the needs of another and that the doctor is always right (even when they are not). Doctors and nurses may have the knowledge but without the right tools they cannot do what they do best; make people better. The success of the clinical staff is dependent on the supply chain staff and their skill and knowledge to get what the staff needs, when they need it. I was able to meet and discuss department challenges with the VP of Supply Chain, and to participate in daily OR huddles, multi-disciplinary meetings, luncheons, and the hospital’s daily safety huddle.

During my time at Henry Ford I was able to have hands on experience as well as given the opportunity to develop and implement my own system and process for controlling excess and outdated inventory, thereby lowering overall costs for the hospital. By working side by side with other managers I got to see what it takes to successfully run a vital hospital department. I do not think I could have had a better intern experience anywhere else.

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Making A Difference Everyday

 Kurt Karas is a Marketing Major here at Northwood University, going into his senior year. This summer Kurt is interning at Billhighway in Troy, Michigan. Read what Kurt has to say about his experience this summer below!

  1. What is your major? I am entering my senior year at Northwood University as a marketing major! The skills I hav
    e developed as a direct result of Northwood University are those that will last a lifetime. Although I am young, these skills are already helping me through my career path.
  2. What student organizations are you involved with on campus? On campus, I am involved with the S.A.N. or Student Alumni Network. I am currently on the board for the club as Campus and Community Chair. We help out with selling beverages at venues such as Ford Field and the Palace of Auburn Hills. It is a volunteer based club. A portion of the proceeds earned at the events sponsors our club to go on exciting networking adventures across America!
  3. How did you get involved with this opportunity? I got involved through this opportunity at Billhighway through a simple application. I came in for an interview and was WOW’d by their Powered by Fun attitute. Their Do More. Impact More. Grow More. mentality is a motto to live by. Strive to make a difference every single day.
  4. What were some of the most important things you learned during this experience? Throughout this experience, I have learned an abundance of things. I have learned it is important to fail. It is almost encouraged to fail at some point. The key takeaway here being learn from your mistake and don’t make it again. I have worked with vendors in setting up events and conferences. I have explored Salesforce and the ins and outs of e-mail marketing. I have also discovered important factors within B2B marketing. It is unusual, yet extraordinary to see the growth and sales team work so closely together. I have learned applications and skills that will improve my well-being and help spring my career to the next step.
  5. How will you apply this experience to your future education and career? Throughout the remainder of my education journey and career, I now know to always ask questions. Do not just complete a task simply because you were asked to. Understand why you are completing a task in order to put full passion and effort into everything you do. There is no greater feeling than a sense of accomplishment. If you are working towards a goal that improves the direction of your organization, that feeling will be fulfilled.
  6. Why do you think it is important for students to have these types of experiences while they are in school? I think these experiences are important for students so they know what to expect in the real world. You cannot simply graduate and expect to maintain a position at a company without any prior experience. It takes going through failure and working through tough situations in order to build yourself up. Be the best person you can be. Understand how to have crucial conversations and come together as a team to accomplish the ultimate task.
  7. What was the highlight of the experience for you? The highlight of the experience for me was when we participated in a cereal drive for the DMC Children’s Hospital of Michigan across the street. To see an entire company get together and raise THOUSANDS of ounces of cereal was astonishing. To be apart of something like this was really close to my heart. I love Billhighway and everything they stand for.
  8. Anything else we should know about this experience? It is fantastic to show up to work everyday and be greeted by open and uplifting personalities. Consider how you can help the company before taking a position, not how they can help you.

 

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Patience in the Family Business

 

Northwood Junior, Jimmy Crosswell has spent his summer selling cars at his family’s dealership, Taylor Chrysler Dodge Ram.
Jimmy started working for the store when he was 14 but, this is his first summer being able to sell cars. He has loved being able to take
advantage of this experience. Jimmy cannot wait to take what he has learned during his internship and apply it to his classes at
Norhwood. We asked Jimmy a few questions about his internship, here is what he had to say!

  1. What is your major?  Automotive Marketing and Management
  2. What student organization are you involved with on campus? I am in Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity
  3. How did you get involved with this opportunity? I have been working at this particular dealership since I was about 14 and this summer I was presented the opportunity to be a salesman.
  4. What were some of the most important things you learned during this experience? I have learned so many things about being a salesman and the car dealership but one of the biggest things that I’ve learned from this experience is patience, patience in customers and the banks and many other things.
  5. How will you apply this experience to your future education and career? Everything that I’ve learned this summer will help me with learning more and more at the dealership until one day I can hopefully own my own dealership and it will all stem from this summer of being a salesman and learning the things that I have learned.
  6. Why do you think it is important for students to have these types of experiences while they are in school? If a student doesn’t have different diverse opportunities during school then they will not be prepared for the world after school.
  7. What was the highlight of the experience for you?  The highlight of my experience was selling cars to the many happy customers that I have made over this summer.
  8. Anything else we should know about this experience? It was an amazing experience and I can’t wait to be a salesman again next summer and then move on from there until one day I own my own dealership.

 

 

 

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The Best Things Happen Unexpectedly

Being a college student can be very stressful at times especially when it’s time to start applying for summer internships! I had no idea what I wanted to do or what I was even looking for. All I knew was I needed experience in order to obtain a job after graduation. Last summer I Interned with
a local State Farm Agent. I learned the ins and outs of a local insurance agency. I soon realized that it wasn’t for me! When it was time to start applying for an internship for summer of 2017, I applied for various opportunities which lead me to accept a position with LaFontaine Automotive Group as a Marketing Intern. My name is Samantha Medici and I will be a senior at Northwood University this fall. I have a double major in Marketing and Innovation of Marketing and Management. I’m also part of the Northwood Women’s Soccer team, Innovation Club, DECA and a member of one honor society Delta Mu Delta.

Northwood is always preaching to attend all campus career events. I finally gave in and attended the career fair this past spring! That’s where LaFontaine approached me. They saw me talking to another company next to their booth and heard my 60-second pitch and pulled me aside to talk! Right then and there I was offered an onsite interview. There I met Carlito Mojica the director of marketing and this is how it all started.

My internship at LaFontaine Automotive Group has been very educational. In the beginning of the internship, I learned a lot about the automotive business, that I didn’t know before. I was also introduced to the marketing and advertising segment of LaFontaine. I learned the importance of Vehicle Merchandising, keeping up with the social post, watching how to create an add content, attending meetings, maintaining the blog and overall the importance of social media and how to reach your customer base. LaFontaine has opened my eyes to endless opportunities to grow my knowledge in the marketing field. I have been able to put what I have learned in the classroom to test but realized there is so much more to learn. Everything that I have done at LaFontaine will be valuable no matter what path I take in the future. This internship has made a positive impact on my future plans. I really enjoyed being a part of a successful marketing team and learning new things every day. I have realized that I truly believe I belong in a marketing department like LaFontaine’s. I enjoy the analytics of what we do and the creation of content that promotes LaFontaine’s brand. It’s important while in college to seek out internships because they truly show you what you like and dislike while growing your resume for your future careers.

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Growing Outside The Classroom

 

If I could describe my  internship experience so far this summer, it would be one word: growth. Growth by pushing myself to learn at every opportunity I come across with an open mind. Growth in stepping outside my comfort zone and making the push to give 110%. This is not school anymore and everything does not revolve around stopping once you receive an “A”. The assignments are not defined or limited to a rubric; you get out as much as you would like to put in, which makes the workplace significantly different than a classroom. This is the ongoing theme I find myself in as an intern at CDK Global, as I prepare for my senior year of college.

My name is Chris Ellis and I go to Northwood University, where I am involved in more than just getting good grades in the classroom. I am the President of American Marketing Association, and am a member of the honor society, Order of Omega and Kappa Sigma Fraternity. I also tutor students in subjects such as Statistics and English. The company I am working at is located in Downtown Detroit and they design and implement marketing strategies for General Motor’s Car Dealership’s websites.

With this being my third internship, I am still taking advantage of any learning opportunity I possibly can throughout my time before I leave college to become a member of the workforce. This summer I have been pushing myself to go the extra mile in all of my tasks in an effort to grow as a professional and make as large of an impact as I can within the organization. A normal week for me begins with analyzing a new dealership website. From there, using internal and external resources, I find a weakness that can be developed into an opportunity using analytics, digital marketing trends, and automotive best practices. I compile all of this information and insight to tell a story through a presentation to the management team. This is helping to sharpen my critical thinking skills and presenting skills, as well as allowing me to learn how to cultivate a thorough digital marketing plan.

The biggest lesson I’ve learned is that disruption can be a good thing. Disruption to me means going off the beaten path to bring a problem to the attention of someone or an organization that will add value, even if that was not necessarily asked of you. If the only thing you learn is to run with the heard, you will just become another sheep. You must learn and interact more than is expected. It also can be summed up as being enthusiastic to ask questions, being a positive force to connect with and make meaningful connections with full-time employees. Without these type of internship experiences, lessons and skills like these would come later or possibly never through schooling itself.

This summer is proving to be a big step in my life where I am developing even more personally and professionally. I plan to continue to act as a sponge and absorb as much information I can from the intelligent people around me, and dive into challenges to see them as a chance to get outside my comfort zone. I owe this experience to my colleagues at CDK Global, Northwood University, and the desire to develop to the next level.

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Small Town Student Takes On the Big City

Makaila stands in front of the Detroit skyline Graduating from a small high school with a class of 46, I would say I’ve always dreamed of what life in a big city would be like. This summer, I was fortunate enough to experience what living in Detroit is like. My name is Makaila Kent and I will be a senior at Northwood this fall. My major is in Innovation Marketing and Management. On campus, I am the President of the Panhellenic Council and a member of two-honor societies – Delta Mu Delta and Order of Omega.

Growing up, I only visited Detroit for Tigers games. Living in Detroit was a thought I had never fathomed. Fast forward to my junior year of college, I had a decision to make. – turn down one of the top rated internships in the country or move to downtown Detroit. Of course, like any growing young professional in search of adventure and experience, I moved to Detroit.

After being at Quicken Loans for a little over two months, I couldn’t be happier with my decision. While at Quicken Loans, I have worked as an intern on the Marketing and Strategy team. On this team I have assisted with numerous internal marketing communication projects including, weekly updates for the Intern Program, meeting requests, email templates and so much more.

At this internship, I have learned that by always being obsessed with finding a better way, your opinion will be highly valued and your network will grow immensely. Senior leaders will recognize your efforts and fellow team members will value your thoughts and ideas. During my internship, I’ve been invited to numerous meetings where my ideas were respected and some were even implemented in a strategy for our talent brand approach on social media. This later led to me generating content for the QLinternships Instagram and becoming the primary account user.

Being able to apply what I have learned in the classroom at Northwood to a professional atmosphere has been rewarding to say the least. It is one thing for a professor to tell you that you will use the business model every day or SMART goals, but when you actually put those hard skills to use on a project, it is more than rewarding.

Makaila near some colorful street artNot only have I been able to build my resume, but I have also been able to grow as a professional by participating in activities provided by Quicken Loans during their Professional Development Month.  Different Professional Development Month events included resume, LinkedIn, and personal finance workshops, speakers in a wide range of positions and companies and so much more. These workshops allowed you to connect with other interns as well as rising business professionals.

My internship at Quicken Loans has helped me expand my network immensely, grow as a professional and gain real world experience. Being a part of something much bigger then you can ever imagine and leaving your comfort zone, is a piece of advice I would give any student looking to propel their career further. Being able to experience the culture of a Fortune 500 company has been a wonderful opportunity. Before Quicken Loans, I worked for a family owned business and a non- profit. Being able to compare the three, has gave me a better insight as to what I’d like to do with my professional career once I graduate in May.

I would like to leave you with one quote that I have based my entire intern adventure off of. This quote was the stepping-stone that gave me confidence in making the decision to move to an unfamiliar area to grow as a better person/ young business professional.

  “In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety.” –Abraham Maslow

 

 

 

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International Graduate Student Shares Experiences at Northwood

International Students posing at a meetingAt Northwood University, we are grateful to serve as a college home to students from many different parts of the world. Having these students as part of our campus family helps to to further our mission to develop the future leaders of a global, free-enterprise society.

Here, Akash Jain Bengani, a DeVos Graduate School student from India, shares his experience at Northwood and in the International Students Organization.

What is your major?
I am pursuing Masters of Business Administration.

What student organizations are you involved with on campus?
I am the President of International Students Organization.

How did you get involved with this opportunity?
It was the inception of spring 2017 when I began at Northwood. We have a pool of international students on campus and there was this international club which already existed. There was a need for new board and I was chosen as the president by the students and our advisor, Rachel Hahn.

What were some of the most important things you learned during this experience?
Most important learning for me has been implementing a new culture of collaborating with international students closely. I learned about developing a culture in my Leadership course and it was the right stage to instigate that into action. I am happy to reach it. Along with that, leading the group with positives, deflecting the conflicts and motivating for more participation has been important part of the learning process in my association with International Students Organization.

How will you apply this experience to your future education and career?
Experience is one entity that keeps on adding as we go through our lives. The experience of motivating students and building a culture in the organization would help me when I open up my own firm in the near future. It is has become easier to collaborate with different mind sets around and that would help me in the future work environments.

Why do you think it is important for students to have these types of experiences while they are in school?
I believe, you never want to learn swimming in the sea. It is always a good idea to start off in a swimming pool.

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Northwood University Collegiate DECA Takes on #CDECAICDC in Anaheim, CA

DECA team photo in professional attireOver the past year, Northwood University’s Collegiate DECA chapter made an impressive impact on their competition journey.  This journey began in February with 30 students competing in Grand Rapids, MI at the State Career Development Conference. In April, 13 students had the incredible opportunity to travel to Anaheim, California to compete at the Collegiate International Career Development Conference.  Our members were extremely grateful for the McIntyre Entrepreneurship Experience for sponsoring this trip.

The Collegiate International Career Development Conference gives members the opportunity to grow personally and professionally by focusing on leadership development, community involvement and competitive events. While attending the conference, our members took advantage of the amazing networking opportunities, various competitions, and exploring Anaheim.DECA Members with their awards

During opening session, Northwood University had five students who were recognized for their impressive leadership within the chapter over the year.  The Leadership Passport Program recognized members who excelled at building personal and professional skills around competence, innovation, integrity and teamwork.  Allison Brown, Taryn Cornman, Ashley Hendley, Amanda Schmidt and Joseph Walsh received this award.

Allison Brown, Ashley Hendley and Samantha Paul were selected to serve on the #CDECAICDC Social Media Team.  These three members stayed active on their social media accounts throughout the conference to share with members active updates on the conference and their experiences.  They also wrote multiple articles for DECA Direct that were published throughout the conference.  These articles varied on topics from their competitions, networking opportunities, exploring Anaheim, keynote speakers and multiple other things that they experienced throughout the conference.

DECA members working on a group projectAs emerging leaders, our members took advantage of the Leadership Training that was offered at the conference. This training provided members with materials to grow their DECA experiences and provided them with resources to bring back to the chapter.  They worked on team building, communication, networking, and various leadership concepts.

Taryn Cornman was nominated and ran for Executive Office for Collegiate DECA.  Her campaign was supported by multiple chapter members and allowed them to network with different members throughout the organization.DECA Team Member Taryn behind her campaign table

The 13 outstanding competitors were given the opportunity to take what they have learned at Northwood University and apply it into their perspective competitions.  Their competitive events varied from business simulations to prepared business plans that were judged by real-world professionals.  Collegiate DECA provides competitors with a competitive atmosphere with emerging professionals so they can test their current knowledge in the their prospective business industries. They had the opportunity to compete with over 1,500 other collegians from around the globe.Four DECA team members holding up medals

Northwood University’s Collegiate DECA chapter is proud to recognize that we had 5 finalists after the first round of competition.  These competitors were Anna Geneseo, Nicholas Krett, Amanda Schmidt, Michael Shaddock and Joseph Walsh.  After the second round of competition we had four students who made top ten in their events!  Anna Geneseo and Amanda Schmidt competed together and placed top ten in Business Research were they focused discovered and presented new findings and strategies for improvements to Barnes and Noble.  Nicholas Krett placed top ten in Entrepreneurship Growing a Business where he wrote a report and presenting his ideas on how to grow his car detailing business. Joseph Walsh was also recognized as a top ten qualifier in Emerging Technology Marketing Strategies where he designed a product using emerging technology solutions.

Our chapter adviser, John Gustincic, was also asked to present to the Collegiate DECA Advisers at the Adviser Professional Development Forum.  His presentation was focused on “Building Bridges Between High School and Collegiate DECA.”  After his successful presentation at this conference, he was asked to present at DECA Amped in June.

Overall, our members had an amazing experience and are grateful for the support they got that made the trip possible!  Our members owned their future and are already to head to Washington D.C. in April 2018!

DECA Team Members Group Photo

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5th Annual Sports and Entertainment Symposium

5th Annual Entertainment and Sports Management SymposiumComing up this Friday, April 28 is the 5th Annual Sports and Entertainment Symposium at Northwood University. This symposium is to educate anyone interested in working in entertainment or sports on the current trends of the sports and entertainment industries while also giving them time to network and create lifelong relationships with sports and entertainment professionals.

College and high school students, along with young professionals, will have the opportunity to participate in breakout sessions with panels of professionals with topics such as “Breaking Into the Industry,” “Women in Sports,” and “Life in the Entertainment Industry.”

Tickets are $30 and can be purchased until Thursday, April 27 at midnight. You do not want to miss this opportunity to interact with professionals in the field including Paul Bee, Director of Sales for the Detroit Red Wings, Josh Reasoner, Team Sales Manager at Adidas, Mark Zimmerman , General Manager at Georgia World Congress Center, Mike Guswiler, President of West Micigan Sports Commission, and so many more!

A full listing of speakers, companies, and breakout sessions, as well as registration information can be found here!

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Meet Your TLC Tutor, Grace!

Grace GermanName: Grace German

How long have you been a TLC tutor: First Year

Major: International Business Management

Home town: Fort Wayne, Indiana

Year in School: Sophomore

Dream Job: Not for Profit International Company

Other than a student, and a tutor, are you involved in anything else on campus?

Yes, I am on the women’s basketball team here at Northwood University.

Do you feel your experience as a tutor has been beneficial to you?

I feel being a tutor has been a huge help to me.  I enjoy helping others and as a peer tutor I get the opportunity to both learn and teach others!

Would you recommend working at the TLC to your friends?

Absolutely! It is a great working environment and has very flexible hours, which fits perfectly with my school and basketball schedules.

“Grace is a tireless worker and a very motivated player for us.  She always has her priorities in order and attacks each day with an outstanding attitude.  She is progressively emerging as one of our best leaders on the team.”

-Head Women’s Basketball Coach, Jeff Curtis