That One Class You Thought You Didn't Need
Emily Geiser never thought that an undergraduate general education course in geology that she took at the University of Findlay while majoring in accounting would come come in handy.
“I really thought I would never use that class at all. It was just something I had to do to get my science credits,” she said. “I remember having to study diagrams of water flow and sediment maps. I figured as an accountant I would never use this.”
Instead, Geiser, who graduated in 2008 with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting and in 2011 with an MBA, has found it very helpful for her work at Marathon Petroleum Company.
“My first job at Marathon was working with the environmental engineering group,” she said. “They use these types of maps all the time to figure out where released product could potentially flow so they can remediate it. I felt extremely proud of myself that I actually knew what they were talking about.”
“I think one of the biggest lessons I realized after graduation was that Findlay really provided me with a well-rounded education that helped me have skills in lots of different areas of my career,” Geiser added.
Today, Geiser is a project controls specialist for Marathon’s marketing and transportation engineering department, working directly with project leaders in the pipeline integrity group on scheduling, cost tracking and budget analysis.
“I travel to the field with the project leaders, I work with contractors to make sure scheduled tasks get completed on time and on budget, and I work with our accounting department to budget and provide cost updates on the projects,” she explained.
Geiser, who lives in North Baltimore, said the best part of her job is working with engineers and being involved with entire projects, not just their financials. “It is very interesting to see how every project is different, and how each project is developed and planned from start to finish,” she said. “Getting to travel and see the projects in the field is also another part of my job I really enjoy. Actually going to see what you have worked on for so long prior to execution is very interesting.”
UF provided an excellent foundation for such work, and the necessary encouragement and guidance that she needed to succeed, she said.
Along with her classroom work, Geiser said her professors assisted her a great deal with career preparation. She named her advisor, Doug Asbury, who is now retired, as having a “huge impact” on her years at Findlay, “from how I chose my classes to helping me feel I picked the right major. Often I would just stop in his office to chat about whatever or ask his advice on various things.” Asbury was also instrumental in encouraging her to try a third time for a Marathon internship after two previous failed attempts.
Geiser’s advice to current students: “The best thing anyone could’ve told me about my (senior year) internship was Doug Asbury said treat it like a four-month job interview,” she said. “That advice stuck with me and ultimately led to my career at Marathon.”