Today, Drury graduates—old and new—are finding careers based on their experience they have gained with internships, networking and applying what they learned in the classroom.
Six Drury grads are now working full-time positions at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City because of the experiences and opportunities they endured along the way. This group of Drury alumni includes James Den Beste, Donna Ward, Andy Burkemper, Kaitlyn Vaughan, Brad Champion and Joey Sands.
Most of these graduates had the opportunity to complete an internship at the Federal Reserve prior to securing full-time employment. The internships were secured through the help of Drury's Breech School of Business and the Office of Career Planning and Development.
James Den Beste, a 2010 graduate who currently works at the Federal Reserve with ITT administrative services, said he received a job offer with the Federal Reserve after completing the summer internship program. Internships help students prepare for the professional world by through experience in the workplace.
"My current full-time position was offered to me following the completion of a summer internship with the Bank in 2009," James says. "Not only did my summer internship provide me with a valuable learning experience, it also led to a job offer a full school year before graduation."
Others, like Joey Sands, started working at the Federal Reserve through connections with other Drury alumni. Andy Burkemper, a 2007 Drury graduate, helped Joey make a decision on finding a job at the bank.
"I hadn't participated in the internship program at the Federal Reserve, and throughout my college career it had remained off of my radar for an employment possibility," Joey says. "However, after hearing about Andy's positive experiences and researching more about the Federal Reserve on my own, it quickly shot to the top of my list for employment prospects."
Some graduates are finding themselves to be successful in their career with the Federal Reserve. Donna Ward, a 1988 graduate, holds a position as Senior Vice President at the bank. Her success was made possible, thanks to what she received from Drury.
"Drury provided me with the skills I needed to be successful in my career at the Bank. The Bank values leaders with breadth and depth of knowledge," Donna says. "Breech offered me a strong business foundation and the Drury liberal arts experience provided opportunities to broaden my perspective and thinking as a leader."
Career at the Federal Reserve are not without pressure, and some former students find such pressure to be fulfilling. Kaitlyn Vaughn, another 2010 graduate who works in human resources, says working at the bank gives her a sense of motivation.
"I most enjoy the people with which I work. The Federal Reserve houses a population of employees whose goal is all the same, to help the organization succeed and fulfill its core missions," Kaitlyn says. "Working with people of such a high caliber pushes me to consistently perform at a high level."
In the end, graduates thank Drury for helping students get to where they are now. James appreciates the effort and hard work Drury put out to help him get to where he is.
"I would like to give Drury, and specifically the Breech School of Business, a lot of credit for helping me get to where I am today. However, I cannot point to one thing and say, 'that is what Drury did to put me on the right path,'" James says. "It is a combination of many great things together that make the Drury-Breech education experience unique."
Interview and article by Kaitlyn Schwers. Kaitlyn is a sophomore double majoring in multimedia production/journalism & writing.