When graduates attended Fall Quarter ceremonies at the Minnesota School of Business-St. Cloud in December, they were greeted by a speaker who knew their story.
Derek Brutger, a spring graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and currently employed by Anderson Trucking Services as an account manager, gave the commencement address. He emphasized the need to be persistent in the job search process.
“Last June, I was sitting in your shoes,” he said. “I was sitting here listening to a keynote speaker, filled with anxiety and uncertainty.”
Brutger explained to the graduating class that he applied for over 20 jobs between March and May of his own commencement. He admitted his frustration and impatience when there were few to no calls or follow-ups to his applications. Still, he remained determined and began to interview in April of that year.
His first job offer presented him with a quandry, however: he didn’t feel that the job was a good fit and was uncertain how to proceed. He remembered that Career Services had prepared him well for the job market and called its director, Shannon Templin, for advice. Templin worked with him to evaluate the pros and cons, and ultimately, Brutger turned the job down and continued to interview.
In May, he interviewed at ATS and was offered a full-time postition the following day. He has already received a promotion.
Brutger emphasized that it takes initiative to make things happen. “Career Services can give you the tips and the tools, which are very valuable, but YOU have to make it happen.” He also stressed, “be yourself. Be professional, but be yourself.”
He ended his remarks by reminding the graduates that they should be proud of themselves and all the drive, motivation and effort it took them to reach their commencement ceremony.
“The day you enrolled at MSB, you did it to give yourself an opportunity to better your life,” Brutger said. “Tonight also is the beginning, though, of a new chapter in your lives. You get to choose how the next chapter is written.”
As the graduating class joined their friends and famly for a cake and punch reception after the ceremony at the St. Cloud Civic Center, Brutger crossed the hall to join Anderson Trucking’s annual holiday party. It was full-circle sort of night.