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Collin Kroeger Builds Long-term Investment in Business Studies

 

Collin Kroeger has a passion for finance, an appreciation for marketing and an understanding of economics.

 

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Collin, a native of Schuyler, Neb., is a senior business major with concentrations in finance and international business. Collin, unlike most students, developed a curiosity for the business field during high school, and it quickly grew to a field of study at WSC.

 

“It [business finance] was interesting to me,” Collin said. “I had an E-Trade account in high school, and I’ve always had a knack for it.”

 

Collin said he has always believed that students can benefit from a business background. He said he remembers taking classes in high school he felt he would never need for his future career. Instead, he said he would have preferred introductory business courses to pave the way for a college business degree.

 

“A basic understanding of business is what I think is lacking in our education,” Collin said.

 

“Everyone will use business at some point in their lives.”

 

According to Dr. Chuck Parker, professor of economics and chair of the Terry J. McClain Department of Business and Economics (recently renamed in honor of WSC business alumnus and retired chief financial officer of Valmont Industries), Collin doesn’t just want to be a financial salesman, but a researcher at the top corporate investment level.

 

“He is very explicit about where he wants to be and why he wants to do it,” Parker said. “He wants to be in a corporate environment where he is doing behind-the-scenes research. He wants to be the go-to guy in finance.”

 

Parker also said that Collin has the personality and internal motivation to reach that goal.

 

“Once he really locks in on something, he’ll really work hard. When he finds an interest, he works as hard as anyone,” Parker said. “He’s very confident, and he can back up his confidence, so he carries himself well.”

 

Collin attributes his successes and experiences thus far to the business faculty at WSC and the special connections he’s made with them over the years.

 

“I love the teachers,” Collin said. “I think you would get just as good of a business education at WSC as you would at Creighton or UNL. You make your own opportunities, no matter what college you go to.

 

“The biggest thing, though, is that you can go in and talk to and just spitball with the teachers. I don’t think you could do that at another college.”

 

Collin said he specifically wants to thank Professor Gerald Conway, Dr. Jeryl Nelson, Dr. Patricia Lutt, Dr. Gerard Ras and Parker for their advice, assistance, encouragement, conversations and support throughout his college career.

 

Besides top-notch faculty instruction, the WSC business department offers a variety of concentrations with the overarching business administration major, including accounting, agri-business, economics, human resource management, marketing, management and more.

 

“A student who graduates from WSC with a business degree has a very broad understanding of business,” Parker said. “They leave here with a broad sense of what’s going on and also a focus in one or two of our concentrations. If you want to enter the world of business, specific companies will train you, but when you have a degree, you’re announcing to them that you can be trained, and that’s what they want.”

 

While at WSC, business students can be involved in Sigma Beta Delta, the international honor society in business, or Delta Sigma Pi, the business fraternity. A member of both groups, Collin has been able to gain special networking opportunities, including an internship at Northwestern Mutual. Collin said he has also enjoyed exercising, reading and helping establish Team Adrenaline, an MMA team in Wayne, amid his college business classes.

 

Business students also have the opportunity to listen to businessmen and women through the WSC Executive in Residence Program. Recently, the WSC business department hosted Mike Wells, president and CEO of Wells Blue Bunny, for a lecture and presentation on business ownership and decision making.

 

According to Parker, some WSC business students go on to work for the “Big Four” accounting firms and travel the world or become chief financial officers and research experts. Many pursue a management track in retail trade, banking or insurance. Others choose to make their own success stories.

 

“Our students tell us they feel like they’re in a career they trained for,” Parker said. “They get raises, promotions and they feel like they can compete, thanks to WSC.”

 

After graduation, Collin hopes to land a job and would eventually like to be overseas. He also plans to get his MBA. Collin’s next adventure, however, is a trip to Taiwan this spring through WSC’s Study Abroad Program, which he hopes will open doors to a future career he’s always wanted.

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