Aamir Kahn and Students

Guiding Students to Succeed

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Calway McCormick knows he can always approach his teachers for help—in classes of 20-25 students, it’s easy to seek guidance from professors. Beyond questions on homework and exams, McCormick has repeatedly sought his professors’ advice on the big decisions he’s faced along his career path.

“You can ask any teacher about almost any issue you’re having, and they’re going to understand it,” he says. “Your teachers get just as excited to talk through your questions as you do. It speaks highly to the culture of learning here.”

Instructor supports career development

Many of the faculty members who teach in the Carlson School Undergraduate Program are experts in their academic fields, and also have real-world business experience. Outside the classroom, Senior Lecturer Anne Cohen—who led McCormick’s strategic management class and employed him as a teaching assistant—is a consultant and entrepreneur.

For McCormick, she was a teacher, and also a mentor.

Cohen helped him develop an action plan for getting the most out his summer internship last year. He was tasked with retooling the incentive program at a call center in a small technology company in LaCrosse, WI.  And while it was a great opportunity to get crucial business experience, the internship felt ambiguous and difficult to navigate.

“I was at a lot smaller company that didn't have a standard way of doing things, so I sat down with (Cohen) and she helped me come up with an approach,” says McCormick. “That internship would not have gone so smooth if I didn't have that guidance from her.”

Imagining a future in business

McCormick is doing his second internship this summer, this time at Land O’Lakes: he’s working with the supply chain and marketing departments on an income optimization project. He has been captivated by supply chain and operations since his first Immersion Core (I-Core) class on the subject. I-Core is a 12-credit block of courses students take during their sophomore year that provides an opportunity for immersion into foundation business courses.

“Supply chain pulls from a lot of different areas of business,” says McCormick. “In other areas, there's only one way to make another dollar.  But with supply chain, there's hundreds of different ways to save a dollar.”

While he currently imagines becoming a consultant after graduation, McCormick is also considering starting his own business. Regardless of his career path, the educators at the Carlson School have prepared him to tackle any challenge.