After completing his Master of Business Administration at the University of Findlay, Larry Wickiser ’10 has kept strong connections with his alma mater and gives back in a big way by providing students with mentorship, hands-on experience and careers.
Wickiser serves as a materials manager at Whirlpool Corporation in Findlay, Ohio. He fulfills many duties ranging from inventory accuracy to leadership development, but his primary responsibility is to deliver material to the assembly lines.
“My education at Findlay helped me with many things ranging from understanding enterprise resource planning and material resource planning systems, to supply chain, finance, accounting and even human resource management,” said Wickiser. “I use these skills every day.”
Wickiser credits his college guidance counselor, Mary Oakes, who helped him balance home life and school-work while furthering his education.
“I know Findlay was a great choice for me,” said Wickiser. “I enjoyed many of my professors, but I really developed a great relationship with Dr. Chris Ward and Dr. Gregory Arburn. They are two awesome people who are not only very intelligent, but they really seem to go above and beyond for their students.”
Wickiser’s continued relationship with UF and his favorite part of his job are what drive him to help UF students strengthen their skills and become successful business professionals.
“The thing I like best about my job is to build teams. We focus on a lot of processes and systems, but it is your team that will make your department succeed or struggle,” said Wickiser. “It is so important to understand the skill set you need and go find those people that are wired with those skill sets along with a great work ethic and a positive attitude.”
Wickiser serves as a mentor to students by providing assistance with resumes and cover letters as well as mock interviews. He enjoys coming to UF career days to talk about the changes, challenges and opportunities he sees in the industry and has also taught a supply chain and logistics management techniques course. When working with students, Wickiser stresses that students need to get out of the classroom and into the workplace to apply what they have learned.
“It’s not enough to convince an employer that you can do the job. You have to convince them that you are a real talent that they have to have if they want their company to move the needle forward against competitors,” he said. “That will not only get you noticed but should keep you in a good position when it comes to other people you’re competing against.”
Wickiser believes that Findlay offers students a very good education which has led him to his own success in addition to hiring several UF graduates at Whirlpool Corporation.
“I have mentored UF students and still do, but I am most proud to say that I’ve hired a few Oilers in our department and they are great assets to our department, plant and company,” he said.
Employers with opportunities for UF students can contact the Center for Career and Professional Development for recruitment information at 419-434-4665.