University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) student Ontario West is already making his mark as a young entrepreneur and business professional. The Little Rock, Arkansas native is currently a sophomore majoring in business administration with a concentration in management. He decided to go the business route to follow in his parents footsteps as entrepreneurs. He began selling make-up for extra money when he came to UAPB. His sales pitch is being able to know what product works best for individual skin types.
West was afforded the opportunity to attend the Allen Entrepreneurial Institute HBCU Initiative in Atlanta, Georgia recently. During this experience, he was exposed to entrepreneurship and leadership taught by industry experts and successful entrepreneurs. He also participated in business pitch competitions. Participants were judged on how well they sold their own product.
West will attend the Thurgood Marshall Leadership Institute in Washington, DC in October. The award-winning leadership institute is a national program designed to develop students’ leadership skills, create a community of scholars, provide top companies access to a talented and diverse student population, and help students make connections that lead to careers.
This summer, West acquired an internship opportunity with Element in Bentonville, Arkansas. He interviewed for the position in the Office of Career Services along with three other candidates. He and Victoria Hearns, from Maywood, Illinois, received internship offers that included an hourly salary range of $12-$15 per hour and all-expense paid housing.
Hearns is a junior majoring in business administration with a concentration in management. She recently completed a Cooperative Education experience as a Human Resources Intern at Stant Manufacturing in Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
The role of the Office of Career Services is to prepare students for a successful transition from college to the real world of work. Both Ontario West and Victoria Hearns took advantage of the services during their sophomore year and have reaped the benefits.
Oscar Fuller, Project Specialist/Career Coach in the Office of Career Services, was hired to increase the number students that obtain Cooperative Education and internship opportunities. This position is financially supported in part by a grant from the U. S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education, Strengthening Institutions, Title III, Part B, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Program. Fuller works closely with students like West and Hearns, to enhance their soft skills and better prepare them for the workforce.
Any UAPB student interested in registering with Career Services should stop by Caldwell Hall, Suite 202 or call 870-575-8461.