Student’s Accelerated Pace Creates Fast Track to Career Goal

Emily Nelson has given herself a head start.

Unlike many of her peers, she has a laser focus on her future career and the optimal academic path to follow in order to reach it. That explains how this 20-year-old is already a college-level senior at Kent State Geauga, majoring in business, minoring in Japanese, and gaining recognition as a leader in her chosen field.

How, exactly, did Emily plot her course along this fast track?

First, she has followed the example set by her father, who is a vice president of quality control and regulatory systems for an international cancer diagnostics company. After recognizing that she wanted a career in quality control in an international setting, she knew that she needed to pursue a pathway toward a master’s degree in international regulatory affairs and quality assurance… so she got busy while still in her teens.
Emily Nelson

As a Berkshire High School sophomore, Emily started taking College Credit Plus (CCP) courses at Kent State Geauga. By the time she graduated from Berkshire, she had already satisfied her Kent State core courses (30 credit hours) and was able to focus on her undergraduate major and minor.

Since she has to wait until Spring 2023 to graduate due to the timing of her required foreign language classes, Emily plans to study abroad in Tokyo during Spring 2022 as an immersive cultural experience, she says.

That’s an exciting goal to anticipate since Emily has been “mostly staying at home in Burton since COVID hit the semester after I finished high school,” she explains.

Emily also looks forward to returning to the Geauga Campus in Burton this coming Fall semester. “Kent State Geauga is a welcoming environment with lots of social events going on to help us to get to know other students and faculty better,” she says.

“From day one, I loved how kind and enthusiastic the teachers are about their classes. One of my favorite things about being at Kent State Geauga is being able to connect with my teachers and tutors and have discussions. I also really enjoy the small but diverse classes that I am a part of. The classrooms are friendly and create an environment to help you come out of your shell and engage,” Emily adds.

In particular, Emily points to academic advisor and Introduction to Kent State instructor Jeremi Weidner as a source of inspiration and direction. “He encourages creativity and our differences,” she explains.

“He has given me the confidence to pursue my minor and international business degree. He’s my go-to advisor whenever I have a question. And he always knows who I need to contact if he doesn’t have the information I need,” she adds.

Thanks to a nomination by Kent State University, Emily has complemented her academic experience with membership in the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS). She says that this program presents remote and in-person speakers and seminars to help students become leaders; not just managers.

The number one leadership honor society in the U.S., NSLS helps students to identify career goals, hone their leadership skills, and turn ambitions into action with access to professional leadership training, exclusive scholarships, an online job bank, networking events, a celebrity speaker series, and professional resume enhancement.

Emily is also moving forward with professional training and certification in quality control methodology. She has already achieved yellow belt status in Six Sigma and is currently training for a green belt (on her way to an eventual mastery-level black belt). Six Sigma certification is a verification of an individual's command of best practices in quality management tools and techniques. Certifications for Six Sigma training are awarded in levels using a belt classification system similar to that used in karate training.

Six Sigma training focuses on the development of management processes that reliably lead to virtually defect-free results in manufacturing or other business activities, using statistical and data analysis tools to reach objectives.

Typically, the belt awarded via Six Sigma certification is relevant to an employee’s position in a business organization. Needless to say, as an undergraduate college student, Emily Nelson is way ahead of the curve. Her career pathway is already paved with high achievements that promise ongoing success at an accelerated pace.

POSTED: Monday, September 20, 2021 - 9:39am
UPDATED: Monday, September 20, 2021 - 9:48am
Estelle R. Brown