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Belstra and Vos reflect on Ozinga Accountancy Internship


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Trinity’s Business program has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Ozinga.  Many students have benefited from the professional mentorship and work experience provided through internships and part-time work opportunities.  Currently, Melanie Belstra ’19 and James Vos ’19 are working in the accounting department at Ozinga where they have the opportunity to apply much of the specialized accounting knowledge they have acquired through coursework.   In addition, Melanie and James enjoy the welcoming and encouraging company culture, as well as the professional connections they are forming with accounting professionals.

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Students Reflect on Speed Interview Experience


As reported by Prof. Kendra Zantingh

 Speed interviews are an opportunity for first and second year business students to take a peek inside a professional’s career, hear about their experiences, receive guidance and advice, and to network with outstanding professionals.  This event builds confidence and helps students visualize and understand what a career might look and feel like.  Students have expressed that they specifically appreciate hearing professionals speak about how their faith impacts their careers.  
The Trinity Business Department believes it is highly valuable for students to begin building networking skills and developing relationships with local businesses from the beginning of their college experience.  Late last fall, students had an opportunity to practice these invaluable skills through a speed interviewing event where they interviewed business men and women from the Chicago land area. 
Professionals shared stories about their career paths, what they love and what is challenging about their current careers, and how faith has played a role in their lives both personally and professionally.  
“The speed interviewing event last fall was a great success.  Each time I have been amazed at how much the students take away from a ten minute discussion with a professional.  They soak up the time and opportunity to connect with professionals, and they walk away beaming.  It builds up students’ confidence, gives them insight into what some careers entail, and helps them realize that while choosing a degree path is important it is not what defines them, because career paths change.  We want them to find what they’re passionate about — what awakens them and makes them come alive — and follow that” (Professor Kendra Zantingh, event organizer). 
If you are a professional that is interested in participating in future speed interview events, or any business department events, email Kendra Zantingh at kendra.zantingh@trnty.edu or our Department Chair, John Wightkin at john.wightkin@trnty.edu, or any of the Business Department team members.  You are what makes these events successful!
Hear about the experience from the students themselves:
  • I realized that preparation can start within our freshman year. Instead of stressing over a major, which these people demonstrated doesn’t define the job you work, you should get involved, nurture stories by doing more than homework, and look into creating relationships with people who can help you as you go through college.” – Colin Stravers (Human Resources Management Major, ’22)
  • I learned how big of a role faith plays in professions.  Everyone talked about how they had the ability to serve and work hard. That is what we are called to do as Christians.  God makes it abundantly clear that we are to serve people.” – Dillon Hermen (Accountancy Major, ’21)
  • “The speed interviews provided me with an abundance of useful and important information. One thing I saw from all of the professionals is that they are all really passionate about their careers that they are currently involved in. I also found it comforting, that most professionals did not know right from the beginning what they wanted to do and it took a little soul searching and experience to figure it out. It made them more relateable to me.  ” – Erica Thomas (English Major, ’21)
  • I learned that no matter where I was, I could always be successful in another field. These professionals taught me that I have more than just one skill or ability, but instead that I have several. Using these skills, I can explore several careers throughout my life, even meshing together jobs that would otherwise be separate. This was evident through a professional who once worked for an automobile dealer and now works for Futureceuticals.  Not only did I take away career insight, but I also have a better sense of how to network myself. Starting conversations with these professionals refined my communication skills. Afterward, when two of the professionals personally told me they appreciated our conversation, I fully understood the power behind this type of engagement experience.” – James Beyer (Biology Major, ’21)
  • As each professional talked about their career path I assumed that they all worked in the field that they studied about in college. It was shocking to know that many of them ended up changing their major or just moving up higher in that field of business. One of the professionals stood out to me because he talked about how he balanced his career and family life and he mentioned having a faith based relationship with his significant other was vital and how she was very understanding when it came to his job and that was something very important to him.” – Briana Figueroa(Social Work, ’21)


Marketing Management, (BUAD 333) and Digital Media & Social Entrepreneurship, (COMM 346) are partnering this semester to catalyze conversations on our campus about social entrepreneurship, a type of business organization that incorporates in order to address social and/or ecological predicaments. Students are planning and marketing  Changemaker Week (April 9-12)  to take the professor-student exchanges and inquiry and launch them into Trinity’s broader campus and constituency.

Here’s what’s going on:

  • Monday- April 9- students are partnering with Trinity Business Network  to discuss corporate social responsibility with the help of several Trinity Alumni.
  •  Tuesday- April 10-  a social entrepreneurship pitch contest as an OPUS event
  •  Wednesday, April 11-  movie screening of the documentary film Poverty, Inc. with a post show discussion
  • Thursday, April 12- students will meet with social entrepreneurs from Chicago:
    • Emily Lonigro-Boylan & Demetrio Maguigad of Lime-Red Studio
    • Robert White of Cara Chicago;
    • Laura Zumdahl of Bright Endeavors (affiliated with New Moms)
    • a Holland, MI photo-related social business 



Trinity Christian College Entrepreneurship Partner, Future Founders, Reports Economic Impact of Fellowship Cohorts

Future Founders, a non-profit organization that believes every youth can become an entrepreneur, recently shared its 2nd Annual Fellowship Impact Report. This report details the tremendous economic impact achieved by its first three Fellowship cohorts of millennial entrepreneurs in 2016 and 2017:

  • Created 234 jobs (102 full-time jobs; 132 part-time jobs)
  • Generated $9.1 million in gross revenue
  • Raised $3.3 million in outside capital 
  • 3 company acquisitions

Two of our student entrepreneurs, Tom Iwema and Ryan Hesslau, participated in the 2nd fellowship program.  Click here to see their contribution to this success.



Heeg and York Share Their Entrepreneurial Experience at Naperville North High School

Sophomore business students, Haley Heeg and Josh York, spoke to the Business Incubator class at Naperville North High School this past week. This class is offered to encourage high school students to solve real world problems through entrepreneurial initiative and provides students with tangible experience in the startup world. Haley and Josh spoke to students about their own experience with startups; specifically, the importance of market validation, how to pitch their ideas in an effective manner, professionalism, and the importance of starting small. 




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Student Entrepreneurs selected for Future Founders Participation

Future Founders Residency Program

Sophomore students, Josh York and Gabe Soler, were two of eighteen students chosen to participate in the Future Founders’ Residency program, a six-month pilot program designed to empower local entrepreneurs to help them build sustainable businesses.  The program provides mentorship by seasoned entrepreneurs, involvement in skill-building workshops, and access to startup grants.



Future Founders Fellowship Program

Sophomore student, Haley Heeg, was one of seHaley Heeg linkedin photoventeen entrepreneurs nationwide selected to participate in its 2018 Fellowship program.  The Fellowship is a prestigious year-long cohort that accelerates the development of top student entrepreneurs in the nation with mentoring, entrepreneurship retreats, a peer community and other opportunities.



Future Founders Alumni Accelerator Program

Tom Iwema and Ryan Hesslau were chosen to participate in the Future Founders Alumni Accelerator Program as a result of their 2016 participation in the Fellowship program.   Both were chosen because they have been intentionally  developing and expanding their businesses full-time while attending college.  This alumni program provides support from Entrepreneurs in Residence, entrepreneurial retreats, along with a national peer community of millennial entrepreneurs.  To read more about the students and their businesses click on the link below.



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Indira Escalante-Bustillo

Indira Escalante accepted into Award Winning Internship Preparation Program

Indira Escalante-Bustillo, second year accounting major, was accepted into the Mary T. Washington Wylie Fellowship Internship Preparation Program hosted by the Illinois CPA Society.  The award-winning program is sponsored by several of the large international accounting firms.  Students parIndira Escalante-Bustilloticipate in interactive sessions dedicated to business ethics, team building, interview skills, and the CPA exam.  At the end of the program, accounting firms interviewed attendees for a variety of paid internships with large accounting firms.

Students ‘Show and Tell’ Their Experience Starting a Business

On Wednesday, October 18th, the Trinity Business Department  in conjunction with the Center for Entrepreneurship and Community Empowerment hosted its monthly “Show and Tell” experience, which is a new  student-led initiative to enhance Trinity community engagement and showcase individual accomplishments of our students.

The theme, “Be Your Own Boss”, showcased four Trinity student entrepreneurs. These students provided insight and inspiration as they shared firsthand experience starting a company.  The panel consisted of:

  • Brooke Hedderman, Sophomore – Hedderman Magic Entertainment Group
  • Haley Heeg,  Sophomore – Rosebud Bloom Boutique
  • Ryan Hesslau, Senior – foreverU and Crossroad Solutions
  • Tom Iwema,   Senior– IKG Property Maintenance, Inc.

The panel reflected on topics such as getting started, how to find your niche market, as well as how to remain in Christ through the challenges of starting and developing a business.