Students of NIU Business: Brandon Bunch

Hometown: Rockford, IL

Year: Expected graduation: 2021

Major: Operations management and information systems

Transfer from: Rock Valley College

What did you want to be when you were growing up? Are you pursuing that as a major, or have you taken another path?
I didn’t really know what I wanted to do when I was growing up. When I was in high school, I was interested in engineering, and as soon as I got to college, I was interested in computer science. I stayed with the program until my junior year and decided that I didn’t much enjoy coding.

What is your major (and/or minor) and why did you decide on this course of study?
My major is operations management and information systems with a minor in business analytics in the College of Business. I chose this field after realizing I wasn’t into computer science but was still interested in working with information systems. I thought how a business operates was interesting.

What has been something you have found pleasantly surprising about your experience at NIU?
The college’s Business Passport program has been excellent. I’ve met several people through it, including students, professors and alumni, while learning a ton. I also learned about several internships through it and found my current place of work where I’m an intern, the Boeing Company.

How have you connected with other students virtually to study for classes, meet new people or form new friendships?
I found the best way to connect with other students during the pandemic was through virtual lectures, NIU events and mainly group projects. Group chats were a great way to stay in touch with each other and study for exams.

Are you involved in any student organizations, mentoring programs or extra-curricular activities? If so, which ones? How have they added to your experience as a Huskie?
I’m currently an intern at the Boeing Company. This internship has given me real-world experience in the aerospace, supply chain, management and defense fields. I get to use the material I learned in class every day, and it’s awesome to be able to represent NIU at such a massive company. Plus, I get to work on fighter jets!

Who has been one of your favorite instructors/professors and why? What course did they teach?
Jedediah McClure is my favorite professor. He was extremely knowledgeable on the subject he was teaching and about life in general. He’s very passionate about teaching and makes sure students understand and retain the material. I had MGMT 217 – Legal Environment of Business with him.

Where is your favorite spot on campus or in the community? Why are you drawn to it?
My favorite spot on campus is Swen Parson Hall. It’s a nice, quiet spot to work on homework, read, study for an exam or relax after a hard test.

What advice would you give to a student who is applying to colleges?
My advice would be to start looking for internships and networking with people right away. The best way to find out if you like something is to get firsthand experience. You’ll be glad you found out if it’s right for you earlier in your college career rather than later. And you can connect with people who have been in the field and can give you their perspective and knowledge.

Coming to college, what is something that you have had to learn to do differently?
Learning how to study! Studying is hard, and depending on the subject, I study in different ways. It could be making notecards, reading, quizzing myself or writing. Also, managing my study time and making sure I start with enough time and in blocks throughout the day.

What do you do to relax or recharge?
I like to go to the gym and spend time at the golf course.

~ reposted from Huskie Spotlight; M. De Jean, Director of Marketing, NIU College of Business

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