Student Spotlight: Q&A with Mason Stevens

On March 27, 2018, in Student Profile, by Walker News

Q: Tell me more about your experience taking the Walker EDGE course (WSBT 2000: Career Exploration for Professional Success)

A: I took the Walker EDGE course, taught by Francesca Henderson, as a senior. I wish I would have taken it as a sophomore to professionally develop sooner. It was amazing. I learned so much, from writing cover letters, to prepping my resume, to how to interview. I also nailed down my 30 second elevator pitch and learned how to best present myself. There was a panel with various professionals, so that we could understand the paths that they took to get to where they are. Some professionals on the panel talked about how it was okay to not know specifically what you want to do out of college and how they eventually found out what they wanted to do. More people need to be in this class. It should be required, it’s one of my best business courses, perhaps my favorite. Francesca is really passionate about young peoples’ professional development and her attitude is contagious.

 

Q: How did you get an internship at Liberty Mutual?

2018 Walker EDGE Internship Fair

A: I went to the 2017 Walker Edge Internship Fair knowing I was interested in insurance. Liberty Mutual was at the Fair, so I talked to Mel, the company’s representative and Branch Manager. We had a good conversation. Since the company was a Fortune 100 and one of the country’s biggest insurers, I knew it would be a great opportunity to work for them so I decide to apply. Liberty called me for an interview, and in the afternoon following the interview, I was called with an internship offer. That was pretty exciting. I started that May on a 12-week program, knowing that if I met expectations, I would be able to continue the position throughout the school year. During the internship, I went to Boston for a week on a Senior Forum where interns get to learn more about the company and network. The internship was going really well so I continued it through December. Then, I was asked to work full-time for Liberty Mutual as a sales agent upon my graduation. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, but I was sure that I loved the work environment and saw growth opportunity, so I accepted.

 

Q: What’s it like working for Liberty?

A: Liberty treats their employees so well. Every month corporate sends out motivational emails and in general, are big advocates for keeping their employees happy. They offer good benefits, from education to healthcare, and provide intensive training. A sales agent trains for 16 weeks before going off on their own. The environment is team-oriented even though it operates with individual sales. We are a cohesive team, and my co-works are always helpful, generous and fun to be around.

 

Q: What is your Webster Story?

A: I am from California, and grew up as a military brat, going to three different elementary, middle, and high schools. I graduated in Dixon Missouri, close to Rolla. I made way to Webster University because I was recruited for track and soccer. I was only aiming to play soccer, but the track coach recruited me too.

I came to campus for a visit and loved the small environment. The coaches, Nick Niehaus and Dan Graber were great too, so I committed. When I started, I didn’t know what I wanted to study. I thought about being a physical therapist, so I could be involved with sports, but biology was way too hard for me. I changed my mind within the first three weeks and decided to study business administration. I knew I could find something in that field, my parents owned businesses, and I too thought I could be an entrepreneur someday. Switching to a business track was a great thing for me.

I started my freshman year playing soccer and track. Then, I needed to leave Webster University for a year due to financial reasons. I transferred back in with an associated from community college. From that point, I focused completely on track. I am now a decathlete and train twice a day. I serve as a representative from the Mens Track and Field team on the Student Athletic Committee SAC. I also represent SAC on the university student committee that allocates the student activity fee budget for student departments and organizations.

Q: What’s you advice to current and future Walker Students:

A: Take the Walker EDGE course.

Don’t take school for granted, work hard, it’s your future. When I was a young, I didn’t really care about school, but soon learned the impact that actions have on your future. Just take the Walker EDGE course to understand what I mean, really.

  • Go to the internship fair, as early as sophomore year. Some internships require other internship experience. In fact, I was turned down for one internship for not having enough experience.
  • Know that good grades are important. It’s important to get a taste for the real world.
  • Have a goal but before you even meet that goal, have another goal set.
  • Get a mentor. Having a support system is helpful, even if it’s your roommate for example. Find someone who will push you.

 

Mason says he is excited for the future, and on behalf of the Walker School of Business & Technology, were excited for his future too.