Gerard Seig ’22

Gerard Seig ’22 — Participating in the Business Immersion Program has been such a fantastic opportunity. We have already learned so much, and we’re just halfway through. Just this past week, we started the week learning Lean A3 thinking, which is a technique used to organize the problem-solving process. A3 thinking is a unique, collaborative tool that allows for my peers and me to thoroughly think through an issue so that we can create the best solution to that problem, but, most importantly, track our results. Later that day, we had a visit from an alumnus, the great Rob Shook. As per usual, he was a great speaker for the program. He told us many stories from his time at IBM and many stories from his time at Wabash. My favorite part of his speech was his plug for emotional intelligence, which is a skill that I’ve been improving since I participated in Unlocking Leadership with Emotional Intelligence. I am so grateful to Rob Shook for taking time off his work schedule to share his knowledge and wisdom with us. The week continued with our final food truck pitches the very next day. To add a little context, we the BIP interns split into four different groups and created a food truck idea. My group decided on a grilled cheese truck. We then drew up a plan and were tasked to sell the idea to investors. We had already done our mini-pitches as a practice round, but that day we were in the big leagues. Hugh Vandivier, Susan Dyer, and Julia Perry joined us as our new investors, along with Roland Morin and Alejandro Reyna. Surprisingly, the experience wasn’t as terrifying as it seemed. Pitching to investors might seem like an enormous task, but it came down to preparation. If you are well prepared, then you can go in with confidence and do your best. After the pitch, the investors would give you feedback that is invaluable for your next pitch or business experience. The next couple of days, we spent learning the basics of marketing so that we could use those skills in our app idea. We dedicated the afternoon of Wednesday to analyzing and reflecting on our StrengthsQuest. This internship is the third time I’ve participated in the StregthsQuest presentation, and each time, I am surprised by how centered I have become. Our week ended with a site visit to an alumnus owned brewery name Triton Brewery. We had a great discussion about entrepreneurship and what goes into maintaining a small business. Overall, week three was our busiest week so far, and it looks like it’s only going to be more active from here. It was a lot of learning as well as practice that will prepare us for the business world. I am grateful to Roland Morin, Alejandro Reyna, and the rest of the CIBE for this opportunity. I would like to thank the alumni and donators for making the Business Innovation Program possible.