Grad Spotlight: Ryan Clark

Ryan Clark graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s Lindner College of Business in 2019 with a degree in business administration.

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Ryan Clark graduated from the University of Cincinnati’s Lindner College of Business in 2019 with a degree in business administration. While in college he worked at Education at Work (EAW) for a little over a year, earning more than 3,000 dollars in tuition assistance. Later, Ryan went on to receive a full-time role at the same financial services company he worked with while employed at Education at Work.

He says he discovered Education at Work as a student looking at UC's job board. He hadn’t had any luck finding a part-time job until he saw an analysis position at EAW. Ryan filled out an application that afternoon and received a call from Education at Work the next morning.

When speaking about his experience at EAW, Ryan says, “It never felt like I was leaving work or leaving school. My classes directly coincided with what I was doing at work and I think that made it a lot easier. It helped me learn very quickly. If I had been anywhere else it may have not been as easy for me to balance work and school.”

Ryan remarks that he was lucky to find a job that made it easy to transition from work to school.

When asked about his favorite part of Education at Work, he says it was the help he received from his program manager, Elizabeth Woosley. He explained that if he ever had a concern like clocking in Elizabeth was ready to hop on a phone call and talk him through it.

If Ryan was to give one piece of advice to students in college he says that it would be to make work and school a cohesive work environment by applying what is learned in class to work outside the classroom.

“The experience that EAW gives you, at least for me, is a good example that if you stick with it and you take the full benefits out of it that you can, you are going to come out of that opportunity in a much better position,” says Ryan.

Student Success: Austin Gibbons

Austin Gibbons is a computer science major at the UofU who has been employed at EAW for almost two years and set to graduate this spring.

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Austin Gibbons is a computer science major at the University of Utah who has been employed at Education at Work for almost two years and is on track to graduate this spring. Austin has earned more than 8,000 dollars in tuition assistance and credits EAW for helping him enhance his professional demeanor and gain an incredible internship opportunity.

Austin has such an overwhelming love for computer science that he tutored other computer science majors and EAW student employees before his shifts at EAW. His passion for all things computer science has led to one goal: to become a world-class software developer. He says that becoming a software developer is now something that he is seeing slowly become a reality.

With hard work and dedication, Austin was able to land an amazing internship opportunity at Galileo Financial Technologies in Utah. This is an opportunity that would allow Austin to grow his computer science skills and give him the chance to attain even more real-world experience before graduation.

He says EAW played a large role in helping him get where he is today, “Without a doubt, I would have had a much harder time interviewing without the professionalism EAW helped me develop,” says Austin. “EAW also helped me stay financially stable and allowed me to work around my class schedule so I could focus on school. Not to mention the great people along the way that helped me gain confidence.”

Austin says he looks forward to the hands-on experience he expects to gain in this internship and is excited grow his backend development skills.

Austin also attributes EAW with helping him build lifelong friendships. Before EAW, he says he was shy and had almost no friends in college, “EAW introduced me to so many new social circles and opened my eyes to how fun college can be when you get involved. I have several friends for life now because of EAW.”

Austin has zero regrets about the time he spent at EAW, telling us that he had fun working in customer support for a leading technology company and had an amazing time working for EAW’s IT team. He remarks that the time he spent in every position at EAW was worthwhile and that he is extremely grateful for all the opportunities he earned.

My Experience as a Digital Reporter at Education at Work

As I am preparing for my final days as a Digital Reporter, I reflect on how I got to where I am thanks to EAW for believing in me and my artistic ability.

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By Berenice Zubiate, EAW Student Digital Reporter

As I am preparing for my final days as a Digital Reporter, I reflect on how I got to where I am thanks to Education at Work for believing in me and my artistic ability. My name is Berenice Zubiate and I am a senior at Arizona State University majoring in The Arts, concentrating in Arts Administration. Next semester will be my final semester at university, but... I will no longer be in the Arizona desert. Instead my educational work space will be held overseas at the Universidad San Carlos III in Madrid, Spain!

I am incredibly grateful for the privilege and opportunity to spend the next three months abroad in one of the most culturally rich European countries in the world. I will be taking classes that will help me advance professionally in my career by taking exciting courses such as International Journalism and Intercultural Communication and Leadership. This would not have been possible without the immense support from my EAW supervisors, Mike Bober and Sabrina Fawley, for pushing my creative thinking and help me learn how to present myself as a professional student artist.

It is a bittersweet feeling knowing that my position as the Digital Reporter is coming to an end, but I am excited to share a bit about what this job has taught me. When I first heard about it, I was at a time in my life where I had just finished changing my major for the third time. I was unsure if pursuing a professional career in The Arts would be the right choice for me. Growing up I always heard my educators and counselors say to me, “consider a realistic career” or “seek something a bit more professional.” But, I took a gamble and I went for it anyway! After my interview, I knew something in my gut told me I had made the right choice applying for this new job position. And thankfully, I was right!

As the Digital Reporter for the Arizona site, there were many months of trial and error, given that I was the first hire here at this location for this position.

I had so much fun learning and experimenting by helping create events for our students, interviewing them for student spotlights, and even practicing and advancing my photography skills along the way.

One of my favorite moments as the digital reporter was when I had the chance to do in-depth interviews with our students. One of the newest articles I wrote, and probably one of my favorites, has to be when I interviewed two of our freshman employees that happened to be first-generation students. Their stories inspired me because they talked about how being first-generation has impacted their personal lives, and family, in a positive way.

Another experience I would like to highlight was that I was given the opportunity to write articles which were eventually posted on the company’s website. This was my first experience having my work published online and I am thankful for the feedback I received from my supervisors. In these articles I wrote about company culture, how college students cope with stress and time management, I even wrote about how students learned how to manage academics while working a part-time job. These articles helped me grow my interview and research experience, as I had little to no knowledge.

Overall, this job has taught me much about being patient, how to listen to others while working in a fast-paced environment, and allowed me to work on my professional communication and writing skills.

It is with a heavy heart to say goodbye to such a wonderful company whose main focus is about the financial and personal well-being of college students. Many lives, including mine, have been greatly affected with the help of tuition assistance in order to help pay for college expenses. Thank you Education at Work for preparing me for my next journey, and to Mike Bober, for never giving up on me and helping me advance in my career. ¡Gracias y nos vemos en España!

How to Manage Stress While Being a Student Worker

We often hear: “You need to stay organized by using a planner!” but most students never stick to using one.

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Experiment with organization

We often hear: “You need to stay organized by using a planner!” but most students never stick to using one. Instead, we should encourage students to find the solution that works best for them. This can include setting up reminders on their phones, laptops or tablets. Notifications will inform you when something important is coming up!

Create a schedule that is both flexible and convenient

If we had the ability to be in multiple places at a time, we would. Unfortunately, that’s not our reality. Instead, students should be aware of what can fit into their schedule and what can’t. Keep in mind of overlapping time and should allocate extra time for for travel and sleep. As a student working at the same time while taking classes be sure that your job understands that you may need to switch shifts to finish an assignment. Making money is always fun but be careful not to let your grades slip.

Stress can look and feel different for everybody

Being stressed may feel unavoidable, especially being a student and an employee. With that being said, learn what coping mechanisms work for you in order to feel at peace again. Start small by taking a study break once in a while or take a 15 minute nap between classes. Afterwards, dedicate time for a walk or treating yourself to a favorite study snack!

Be conscious of what you’re eating and putting into your body

As college students we may not always make the healthiest eating choices. It’s not our fault! Instead, we should educate ourselves by making conscious choices while “on the go.” For example, even though eating a donut might fill you up in the morning, try to trade that for a bagel paired with a banana. Students not only save money when they prepare their own meals but overall it’s more nutritious!

Life will seem exhausting, talk to someone about it

We have all been there, when life just starts piling up and you feel like you might explode like a piñata! Don't let this fear get to you, try exploring campus resources to make sure your head is in the right place. Communicate these emotions to your boss or advisor to let them know what’s been going on and how they can help you. Know your support system and stay connected with family and friends.

If you hated naps when you were younger, you’ll definitely appreciate them now

Naps should be a college student’s best friend. We cannot stress enough how important sleep can be! The average college student should sleep for 6-8 hours. If you didn’t get the minimum amount, try scheduling a nap time in your day to feel refreshed before the next thing on your schedule. If students have a hard time falling asleep try looking into aromatherapy and invest in a good sleep mask, it’ll make all the difference.

At the end of the day, these are just some suggestions for students to try. Things may become very overwhelming but at Education at Work we encourage students to take the time and explore what works for them and what doesn’t. Don’t forget to reach out to other students and see what remedies have helped them in the past. Good luck to everyone this semester and don't forget to squeeze in a nap today!