In the News

Posted April 9, 2019

Where Are They Now?

“Go out there and try it – even if it feels daunting without experience. As long as you have the passion and a drive to succeed, people will see that and resonate with it.”

-Lordia DiPiazza

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

2019 Northern Michigan University graduate Lordia DiPiazza earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Marketing and minored in Art and Design. At the age of 22, she is currently working at Bottom Line Marketing as a Social Media Coordinator. During her time at Invent@NMU, Lordia worked as a Marketing Assistant. 

While working towards her degree in Marketing, Lordia found it very important to be working at Invent@NMU because she was able to apply what she had learned in the classroom to real life experiences. One of her favorite memories was when everyone would gather to put their different creative brains together to figure out a project or task. 

As a Social Media Coordinator, she works with many client accounts. She manages the social media channels for clients, including Facebook and Instagram, while also creating content and communicating with customers online. Lordia also works to boost promotions and increase engagement for clients’ brands. In the future, she hopes to continue to grow in her current position. The industry is always changing and she is excited about what is yet to learn.

Lordia encourages students interested in the marketing field to dive right in. “Go out there and try it – even if it feels daunting without experience.” she says Lordia. “As long as you have the passion and a drive to succeed, people will see that and resonate with it.”

Another benefit of her current position is that she gets to travel to different cities to visit with clients. Lordia’s favorite part of her job at Bottom Line Marketing is the ability to use her creativity and getting to do what she loves every day.

 

Stay tuned for our next interview!

“The best way to innovate is to try new things, fail, learn, grow, and try something different.”

-Jon Slack

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

Twenty-seven year old Jon Slack, graduated from Northern Michigan University in 2015 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Construction Management with a minor in Business Administration. Currently, Jon works at Clark Construction in Lansing, Michigan as a Project Manager where he manages large commercial projects. While working at Invent@NMU, one of Jon’s favorite memories is setting up the building when it first opened. 

At his current job, Jon has learned that buildings are a lot more complicated than they seem. He has headed the way for a lot of different projects including college campuses, casinos, and government buildings. Invent@NMU helped with Jon’s successes by giving him the skills to pay attention to detail and focus on everything running smoothly. His favorite part of his job is that each project presents a new opportunity to work with so many different people in diverse lines of work, including tradesmen and vice presidents of universities.

Jon stresses that he always makes sure every project runs smoothly and the owner of each project has the best experience possible. “The best way to innovate is to try new things, fail, learn, grow, and try something different,” says Jon. He enjoys living in his town of Lansing, Michigan, as it’s affordable and a great place to live, but he does miss Marquette and the crazy amount of snow it receives.

 

Stay tuned for our next interview!

“Invent@NMU helped me learn to be accountable and present myself professionally at all times, because you never knew who was going to walk through the door with a product or business idea.”

-Mike Wilber

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

Mike Wilber graduated from Northern Michigan University in December 2018 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing. At the age of 22, he currently lives in Detroit, Michigan working at Hilti North America where he is a Store Account Manager. While working at Invent@NMU, Mike was a Project Manager and enjoyed working with the awesome team members. He created great relationships with other student employees and still keeps in touch on a weekly basis with some of his old co-workers.

Since moving to the Lower Peninsula of Michigan he has been exploring the area as much as he can and enjoys the convenience of Uber and Lyft. One day, Mike aspires to be a Regional Manager with Hilti. He has a passion for bringing out the best in people and helping them reach their full potential. Invent@NMU helped Mike learn to be accountable and present himself professionally at all times, because he never knew who was going to walk through the door with a product or business idea. “Always go above and beyond with anything that you’re working on,” said Mike. He had many interactions with entrepreneurs, business professionals, and even the governor. Mike said he owes his many successes to Invent@NMU.

 

Stay tuned for our next interview!

 

“Never get too comfortable. Keep challenging yourself in learning new skills and bringing new ideas to the table. Be the person people wonder, ‘how do they do it?’”

-Katelyn Tessin

 

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

At the age of 23, Katelyn Tessin has found an incredible job opportunity in Iron Mountain, Michigan at CCI Systems, Inc. She attended Northern Michigan University with a major in Public Relations and a minor in Marketing and graduated in December 2018. While working at Invent@NMU, Katelyn found herself making many meaningful connections. Invent@NMU helped set her up for success when applying for jobs after graduating and gave her an advantage over others who were applying for the same position.

At her current job, Katelyn performs market research, creates new marketing materials, manages trade shows the company attends, tracks successful marketing campaigns, and much more. She loves that she was able to stay in the Upper Peninsula and says that Iron Mountain has a lot to offer for jobs and that it still has the U.P. charm. Katelyn says that she loves her new job because it challenges her everyday and she enjoys seeing how much she has grown as a marketing professional in this position. 

For students interested in her profession, she suggests joining clubs on campus and applying for internships. Her key words of advice are, “Never get too comfortable. Keep challenging yourself in learning new skills and bringing new ideas to the table. Be the person people wonder, ‘how do they do it?’” Katelyn aspires to move up within the company and become a director of marketing one day. She said she truly loves where she works and wants to keep learning and growing there.

Stay tuned for our next interview!

 

“Build your profile so you have something to show during interviews. Also, make every connection you can.”

-Alyssa Chomiczewski

 

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

After living in Marquette for four years, former Invent@NMU student marketing assistant, Alyssa Chomiczewski moved to Chicago. Alyssa graduated from Northern Michigan University in May of 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Marketing. She is currently employed with Jones Lang LaSalle as a Tenant Services Representative. JLL is a commercial real-estate company and Alyssa is working in the property management sector. Her favorite part of her new job is working in downtown Chicago during business hours. She told us that it is a wild experience but she has also gained really great exposure within her industry and the events are always fun.

 

“Build your profile so you have something to show during interviews,” said Alyssa. “Also, make every connection you can.” Invent@NMU helped her after graduation by allowing her to work with students in different areas of study as a team to reach goals and deadlines. This is something that applies to her work now as the team she works with consists of engineers, project managers, general contractors, accountants, and more. While working at Invent@NMU, Alyssa’s most fond memory was when the virtual reality headset first arrived and the whole staff spent an entire afternoon taking turns playing it.

 

At the age of 23, Alyssa enjoys her current position and she would like to move to either the marketing or brokerage side in the future. Alyssa spends most of her time in Chicago exploring, as she said she is lost in the city 80% of the time. She misses Marquette and the snow but is enjoying where she is at now!

 

 

Stay tuned for our next interview!

“It can be tough sometimes. I know it sounds cheesy, but if you keep working hard you will get there eventually.”

-Trevor Pianga

 

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

We had the privilege of talking to former Invent@NMU mechanical engineer specialist, Trevor Pianga. Trevor graduated from Northern Michigan University in 2018 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology, a certificate in CNC Machining and a concentration in engineering design. He currently works for McLaren Engineering in Livonia, MI as a test engineer. In his position,Trevor creates testing programs and performs data analysis for clients to ensure the parts are functioning properly. Trevor stated that his favorite part of his new job is that he is able to break stuff all day at work. Not only that, but Trevor grew up in Livonia and he enjoys being back where he grew up with friends and family.

 

“It can be tough sometimes. I know it sounds cheesy, but if you keep working hard you will get there eventually,” says Trevor. He lives by his advice to other students interested in his profession in test engineering, as it has helped him in his current success. At the age of 23, Trevor’s goals are to go back to school and obtain a degree in business management and become an Engineering Manager. Ultimately he would love to work within the aerospace industry.

 

The experiences he gained while at Invent@NMU attributed to Trevor’s success in being a valuable team player. He enjoyed working with all of the leadership at the office, as he was working during the merge with Innovate Marquette SmartZone and enjoyed being a part of that transition. While there were many memories that Trevor had while working with Invent@NMU, he said his most memorable moment was spending downtime in the office calculating how many tears it would actually take to “cry me a river”. While working at Invent he loved getting to know everyone he worked with, along with learning leadership skills. “A lot of my work ethic goes out to Invent@NMU,” Trevor mentioned.

 

When Trevor is not at work, you can find him longboarding, eating pizza and hanging out with his dog, a German Shepherd. Although he does not miss shoveling the copious amounts of snow we get in the U.P., Trevor does miss the snow in Marquette and the beautiful area.

 

 

Stay tuned for our next interview with Alyssa Chomiczewski!

“If you work hard, challenge yourself, and ask questions, you can bring something to the table and learn from those around you.”

   -Emma Finkbeiner

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

We were able to catch up with Emma Finkbeiner from her exciting life in the Windy City! She studied Public Relations and minored in Journalism while attending Northern Michigan University in her undergrad and continued at DePaul University in Chicago to complete her Masters of Arts in Public Relations and Advertising. While working for Invent@NMU, her position as a Public Relations Specialist gave her real-world experience, portfolio pieces, and was a capstone to her college education. Currently, she works for the Chicago Cubs as a Digital Media Coordinator and loves her job, working on various social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and a recently relaunched YouTube channel.

So with so much success at the young age of 25, what does she aspire to do in her career? She is focused on achieving excellence as a new professional starting her career, with an overall goal of being a great employee, team member, and an asset to the organization every single day.

The experience she gained through writing press releases and pitching her clients’ stories to the media was valuable and a highlight of her time at Invent@NMU. Her most proud moments include securing interviews for her clients, as well as writing the collateral for a former director representing Invent@NMU at The White House.

“If you work hard, challenge yourself, and ask questions, you can bring something to the table and learn from those around you,” says Emma. She lives by her advice to students interested in her profession in social media and since she pivoted from the traditional public relations path, it’s helped her in her current success.

Even though she has a busy job, she takes advantage of living in Chicago. She loves its diversity and that every neighborhood is unique. There is always something to explore and she, of course, likes going to the Cubs games!

Stay tuned for more interviews!

“Building a network and following up goes a long way.”

   -Charlie Tyson

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

Next up in our series is former Invent@NMU project manager Charlie Tyson, who is putting his experience to use. Charlie graduated from Northern Michigan University with a degree in marketing in the fall of 2016. He currently works in Detroit as a project manager for a Michigan Economic Development Corporation initiative called PlanetM, a partnership working to promote global mobility. His favorite part of his job is being an entrepreneur himself while supporting entrepreneurs and enjoys tackling a new task every day.

His most fond memories of working at Invent@NMU involve his work with the professional mentors and local community members, as well as building relationships with local entrepreneurs. He credits his experience at Invent@NMU for his confidence when leading meetings, working with a variety of clients, and thinking strategically.

His advice to students interested in working in his profession is to get out of their comfort zone and says, “building a network and following up both go a long way.” His aspirations in his company are to continue working with startups, building companies, and making life-changing solutions.

During his free time, he enjoys travel, active mountain biking, skiing, and golf. He appreciates all the activities available in downtown Detroit and all the renovations the city has implemented makes it a lively area to live in. Although he likes his new hometown, he misses the Marquette snow and outdoor activities like skiing and hockey.

 

Stay tuned next time for our interview with Emma Finkbeiner!


“There’s an immediate benefit you can see right away from working at Invent@NMU…it’s a resume builder.”

        -Rachel Allen

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. They have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

 

While working at Invent@NMU, Rachel Allen was a valuable member of our team as a mechanical engineer technician. Since graduating from Northern Michigan University in 2016 with a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Technology and a concentration in design, she moved to Grand Rapids to pursue her career as a product engineer. She has worked for Yanfeng Automotive Interiors for three years and has had the opportunity to work on projects like the BMW X 5, 6, & 7 Instrument Panel. Rachel recently transitioned from product engineer of launch to phase one engineering within the company. Her favorite part about her job is the variety of tasks she does on a daily basis that keeps her connected and engaged. Her three year plan? She aspires to become an engineering manager.

An interesting memory from working at Invent@NMU was when she and a coworker were tasked to study how much ice an ice maker makes, how much heat it puts off, and the properties of the machine itself. This resulted in eventually having to remove 50 pounds of ice from the basement every six hours to empty the ice machine.

 

Not only did she have fun experiences with fellow students, having the experience from Invent@NMU on her resume gave her the edge when finding a job. “There’s an immediate benefit you can see right away from working at Invent@NMU…it’s a resume builder,” says Rachel.

 

The position helped line her up with better opportunities and gave her a leg up from others that were applying for the same job. Rachel was also given a unique view of the products that would come through and was able to determine the validity within the market, as well as sharpen her skills in logical thinking and build a product from start to finish.

 

It’s not all business for Rachel though; on weekends she enjoys participating in cooking classes, as well as wine and beer tastings with her husband. She appreciates the proximity of her new town to a variety of scenic views like beaches, farms, and city life.

 

Stay tuned next week for our interview with Charlie Tyson!

      “Go beyond the curriculum and dig past if you see something interesting.”

    -John Walsh

 

Invent@NMU has had the privilege of employing exceptional students throughout the years. Many have gone off to do amazing things since graduating and we are curious to know where they are now. Follow us in the series that chronicles the current career paths of some of our previous student employees.

 

The first participant we had the opportunity to interview was John Walsh, a Mechanical Engineer Tech during his time at Invent@NMU. He graduated with his Associates in C&C Technology, studied mechanical engineering while at Northern Michigan University, and is finishing his degree in engineering at Stark State College at the University of Akron. He currently works full time as a manufacturing engineer and loves his position – even when he works 80 hours a week! He aspires to work toward a position in upper management at his company.

He credits his fondest memories at Invent@NMU to the fun atmosphere and working with clients like Brian Kulbieda, inventor of the Posture Plank. Working at Invent@NMU prepared him for life after graduation by evaluating the business aspects in engineering, cross-training in departments, and seeing the process through from beginning to end. His advice to students interested in his profession is to “go beyond the curriculum and dig past if you see something interesting.”

Since moving out of Marquette, he says he definitely misses the Marquette snow because he is a big snowmobiler. So, when he is not at work, you might catch him on the trails!

Stay tuned next week for our interview with Rachel Allen!