Life in the Fast Lane

four panelists seated in chairs2017 UMW Business alums Clark Billups, Sean Kinslow, Victoria Le and Melisa Pilipovic returned to campus on January 23, 2018 to talk to current business students about life after graduation. The alums assembled in Woodard Hall where  Acting Dean of the College of Business, Ken Machande, moderated the panel discussion.

Pilipovic, a federal audit associate at KPMG, began her job as an intern during the summer of 2016. She loves everything about her job and how it is constantly changing, She is always learning new things. “On the flip side, I wish I have been working longer. I don’t like that I don’t know everything yet,” she said.

Le, a contract specialist at the Marine Corps System Command at Dahlgren, suggested that students start job searching early and apply for a wide variety of positions. She stressed that “the hardest thing is the learning curve in a new job. Thankfully, everyone I work with is willing to help me learn and succeed.”

Kinslow, who currently works for Loudoun County Government as its Parks, Recreation and Community Services Middle School Program Assistant,  urged students to explore various career paths. “I wanted something outside the typical “box.” My positions, I didn’t even know existed. I like how I can combine my schooling with something I am passionate about.”

All four speakers also emphasized networking as a way to find professional opportunities. “Networking is huge,” Melisa shared. “Use your resources. LinkedIn is a good starting point. ”

Clark, a sales representative with Liberty Mutual Insurance,  quickly agreed with Melisa. “A year ago I was afraid of all the interviews I had scheduled out for February. My main goal was to hire myself an employer. I applied to tons of positions. I met my boss during a speed networking event in the College of Business during my freshman year. We made a connection and kept in touch throughout college,” he shared.

“A friend of a friend is better than a stranger,” Kinslow added.

Photos and story submitted by Jen Monroe, Class of 2018

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