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Dec. 12, 2011
By Brittany Keithley, media relations assistant
Growing up in the small farming community of Bendena, Kan., Kamron Winchester’s transition to Northwest Missouri State University was harder than most students. However, Northwest offered him a home and the instruction he needed to succeed.
“I liked the small school and the one-on-one connection you get with a teacher,” Winchester said. “In classes you find they are teaching to you and not teaching at you in a giant lecture hall. I really like that you can go in to talk to the faculty and have that connection. It definitely opened my eyes and made experiences with different students and cultures on campus easier.”
With his professors’ direction, Winchester attended events like the Office of Career Services’ Career Day, where he landed a financial consulting internship at The Gallup Organization, a performance and management consulting company in Omaha, Neb. The internship gave him a new perspective on the finance and accounting skills he was learning in his courses at Northwest.
“You can only learn so much out of books, but the internship provided me real-world experience I couldn’t have found on campus,” Winchester said.
The internship helped him confirm some of the career goals he was setting at Northwest, and he realized after working with Gallup’s internal credit union that he wanted to take a different path. After serving as a loan officer, Winchester chose to look closer at consulting positions to gain more interaction with the customers.
“I like the consulting because each client has different needs and gave me a good understanding of what I would like to do when I graduate,” Winchester said. “I wasn’t really planning on taking an internship, but when the opportunity presented itself I took it and ended up landing a job afterward.”
With a job offer in financial consulting at Gallup, Winchester saw the opportunity to work with different clients, serving each the way their contracts illustrate.
“Once we sign a client, I take over the contract to make sure we are giving them the right services,” he said. “I take over all the financial aspects and consult to make sure everyone is getting the right services. Depending on how you perform you can even earn different travel opportunities to serve the clients.”
Winchester credited his professors at Northwest for preparing him for his internship and job at Gallup. He said his professors’ real-world experience was instrumental in teaching him about situations he may face.
Winchester, who earned his undergraduate degree in business management and finance management from Northwest and graduates this winter with a master of business administration, believes his education at Northwest was essential to being hired at Gallup.
Winchester’s small town background didn’t hinder him when he chose to attend Northwest. Now, he holds the traditions and pride of being a Bearcat close to his heart.
“When you’re a freshman you hear, ‘Once a Bearcat, always a Bearcat’ and you don’t understand that connection to the school,” he said. “But as you get older, into your junior and senior years, you begin to realize the tradition and excellence Northwest emanates, and you really feel that connection and pride in where you came from and the traditions you took part in.”
Mark Hornickel, Communication Manager
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Northwest Missouri State University
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