Internships: The key to connecting students to the world of work

Deb Mumm-Hill-2By Deb Mumm-Hill, Director of Student Success

So, what is the employment outlook for young adults? The good news for college students is economic forecasts indicate 66 percent of jobs in 2018 will require a post-secondary degree. The tough news is industry needs specific skills to go along with the diploma, so a degree with no industry experience makes it difficult to land a job within a specific degree area.

In the 1980s, industry hired large groups of recent college graduates with very little work experience and invested in three- to six-month training programs that prepared young hires to hit the ground running. In return for this investment, the expectation was that employees would stay with the organization 10 to 20 years as they aspired to climb the corporate ladder. Times have changed in an era with tight corporate budgets. Managers now realize it is not a wise investment of resources to train a millennial employee who only stays 18 to 36 months before moving on to a new company. So how can colleges and industry more wisely prepare the millennial for the world of work?

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Information on Griffin Huber celebration of life service

Photo by Chelsea Smith
Photo by Chelsea Smith
Pastor Mark Pratt-Russum of West Hills Friends Church asked that we share the following information with the George Fox community. Please contact Associate Pastor of Christian Leadership Jamie Johnson ( with any questions.


Dear Friends,

We would love you to join us to celebrate the life of Griffin Huber. We will gather at Southwest Bible Church (14605 SW Weir Road, Beaverton, OR 97007) Saturday, Sept. 20 at 11:00 a.m. There will be some food available following the service.

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My Serve Day Experience

IMG_8518By Heather Kurtz, Class of 2015

Serve Day is one of my favorite times at George Fox. Every year, we dedicate an entire day to serve others around our community. Students, professors and faculty come together and work to bless others, and in my case this year, to be blessed by others too.

Three of my friends and I partnered with a team leader and Faith in Action (a local non-profit organization) to help seniors in their homes for the day. The tasks we did for these people included washing windows, cleaning carpets, weeding and hooking up a TV. We helped three individuals, and all three were so appreciative and friendly, but Marilyn stood out most to me this year. When we were weeding her garden, she chose to stay outside and talk with us while we worked, telling us stories about her kids. It was nice to serve her with our actions, but also through conversation.

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Student Success Story: Arturo Lucatero

IMG_7678Senior computer science major Arturo Lucatero won’t graduate from George Fox University until May, but that didn’t stop him from lining up his dream job with one of the most recognized companies in the world: Microsoft.

This summer, Lucatero, an Act Six scholarship recipient, will begin work as a program manager at the company’s world headquarters in Redmond, Wash., where his duties will include testing consumer products to ensure a user-friendly experience. “One of my favorite parts of my job is that I become the face of the customer,” he says.

Recently we sat down with Lucatero to learn more about his new job and his time at George Fox.

Q: I understand you’ve already got a job lined up after college. Tell me what the position is and how it came about?
A: I will be working for Microsoft as a program manager on their business intelligence team. Growing up, it was my dream to work at Microsoft. After arriving at Fox, I pursued an internship with [the company], and though it didn’t initially work out, I managed to land an internship with Intel. Still, my dream was to be a Microsoft intern. One of the things I learned was that Microsoft prefers computer science majors as interns, so I switched from information systems to a computer science major. Thanks to that, I was able to be a Microsoft Explorer intern last summer [2013]. It really helped me decide what I wanted to do, which is program management, so this summer I went back as a program manager intern working on a self-service business intelligence project.

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ADP Graduate Success Story: Jim Ferraris

FerrarisDegree: Bachelor of Arts in Management and Organizational Leadership (2013)
Current position: Deputy Chief of Police, Salem Police Department

How would you describe your experience at George Fox?

My experience at George Fox was outstanding! The George Fox motto is “Be Known.” That was so true – I was known at George Fox. I have a busy life, both professionally and personally. Staff and faculty did everything they could to make furthering my education workable within the demands on my life. Several professors and instructors stand out. To name a few: Frank Barsotti taught human resources. He was a perfect fit. He has years of experience working for HP as a global HR director, responsible for more than 30,000 employees. I learned a lot from him that I am able to apply in my professional life. Carol Hutchinson was another fabulous instructor. From a spirituality perspective she helped me grow as an individual. Dr. George Byrtek was another great professor. He shepherded us through the MGOL program, always was available to us and pushed us to be better.

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A three-step guide for student-athletes in the college search process

Taylor-Martin-2By Taylor Martin
Assistant Director of Athletic Recruiting

As I was touring my first campus during my junior year of high school, I was aware of the classroom experience, the dorms and the cafeteria, but if I’m being honest I was mostly thinking about my appointment with the coach that concluded my visit.

“How much should I talk?”
“Should I brag or be humble?”
“What questions should I ask?”
“Will he like me?”
“Will I make my shots in open gym afterwards?”

All of these questions swirled in my head and distracted me from really allowing myself the space to feel comfortable on that first visit. This one visit was a pretty good reflection of how too many student-athletes (including myself!) go through the entire college selection process. With that said, there is a better way to determine where to go, and it all comes down to how much work you are willing to put in on the front end.

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How to stay organized during the college search process

IMG_8703-2By Ryan Dougherty
Executive Director of Admissions, George Fox University

Before beginning the college search in earnest, plan ahead. Mailboxes fill with brochures and emails start coming and before long you can be overwhelmed by the volume and breadth of information. One of the most important things a family can do is to have a plan. For simplicity’s sake, here are a few practical tips to stay organized in the areas of mail, email and schedules:

Dealing with Mail
The first college brochure you receive will likely feel like a special occasion; the hundreds that follow may not elicit the same response. A simple way to stay organized is to discuss your criteria for college selection early and then create “yes,” “no” and “maybe” piles. When the mailperson delivers, immediately separate your college brochures into one of these piles. For clarification, your “no” pile should be the recycle bin. Trust me, the volume of mail will be significant. Keep the “yes” pile to a limited quantity and go through your “maybe” pile regularly. Plan early and stick with the plan.

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Alumni Update: Elisabeth Tissell

DSCN1597-2Recently 2014 graduate Elisabeth Tissell shared with us details about her new position with AmeriCorps. A politics major, she will lean heavily on her Spanish minor serving as a case manager for bilingual families. Here are more details from Elisabeth:

“I recently accepted an AmeriCorps position in Alamosa, Colorado! I will be working as a case manager with four or five families as they transition from homelessness to self-sufficiency. Many of the families are bilingual, so I will be using Spanish regularly. I will also have the chance to teach life skill classes, attend relevant court hearings, conduct home visits and plan numerous projects. The position starts August 1, and is a two-year commitment.

I am nervous, but excited. This job will stretch me emotionally as I confront difficult situations and problems. Fortunately, the position comes with housing; I will be sharing a house with other AmeriCorps participants, and each house includes a shared vehicle. God is good – I don’t have to find a car, an apartment or ready companions!

I want to thank Spanish professors Debbie Berho and Viki Defferding for their guidance and support throughout my last few years. Thanks to them, I feel prepared for this job and the challenges I will face.”

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Engineering Major Lands NASA Internship

NASA Portrait-2Engineering major Joseph Truitt lined up a great internship this summer in the rotorcraft aeromechanics department at the NASA Ames Research Center!

Here’s what he’s working on: “I’m working with a radio controlled (RC) model of an aircraft called a V-22. It’s a tiltrotor aircraft, meaning that it has propellers which point upwards for it to fly like a helicopter and can also pivot forward to fly like an airplane. There are well-trusted methods used for testing full size rotorcraft (any aircraft with rotor blades, like helicopters). The goal is to see if those same testing methods will be accurate for smaller-scale aircraft, such as an RC model. So the project that I’m working on takes those full-sized testing methods and uses them on the small-scale RC model to see how accurate the results are.”

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Meet the Class of 2014: McKenzie Wolfe


Hometown: Newberg, Ore.
Major: Accounting

Q: How would you describe your experience at George Fox?

A: My experience at George Fox is one that I will always treasure and look back on. While at Fox I have been pushed and pulled in all areas of my life, shaping me into the person I am today. This was an amazing place for me to grow as a student, an athlete, as a follower of Christ and as a friend. I don’t think there is one person from Fox that I could attribute these to or who has had a distinct impact on my life. Rather, several professors, coaches, teammates and friends have all had a hand in influencing my life. That is one of the things that I learned during my time here; no matter how long your relationship may be with someone at Fox, they could have a huge impact on your life.

Not only was I able to focus on my studies at Fox, I was also able to participate on the women’s basketball team all four years and travel to Europe for Juniors Abroad. One of my favorite memories was definitely having the opportunity to participate in the championship game of the Division III National Tournament. It was an amazing experience – to reach your goal and see the fruits of all the hard work we put into the season. Every year I’ve participated on the basketball team has pushed me and shaped me into becoming a better leader, friend and woman of God.

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