Leading up to December Commencement, we’re asking some of our graduates to tell us about their experience as Greyhounds and where their journey will lead them next. Meet December 2023 graduate Joseph Donlin, who will receive his Bachelor of Science in Finance with distinction from the Ron and Laura Strain Honors College and a minor in ceramics later this week!
Why did you pursue a degree in finance?
As everything functions in some capacity as a business, I enjoy critically thinking and analyzing the fast-paced and ever-changing nature of finance. Furthermore, studying finance allows the potential for financial stability and freedom, and an understanding of the market. Truthfully, I think there can be much learning outside of the major and its classes. There have been numerous business events that have augmented my learning and growth.
Why did you choose to study at UIndy?
I chose to study at UIndy due to the small size and personable teachers. I valued the distance from home being far, but not too far, and the swim and dive team as I was a diver for my first two years.
Are you a part of any extracurriculars (RSOs, societies, student leadership, teams, volunteerism, etc.) on or off campus? If so, what are they and what is your role?
I serve as this year’s UIndy Catholic president, am on the board of directors for the Student Business Leadership Academy, work with Honors to manage their social media, and volunteer to sing at the Chapel worship services. During my time at UIndy, I was a contributor to the Swim and Dive team on the Diving side but after injuries and changing academic timelines decided to stop. Outside of UIndy, I work Friday nights at Easter Seals Crossroads providing respite care to families with kids who have special needs.
Are there any faculty or staff members who have significantly impacted your time at UIndy? If so, who are they and how did they influence you?
Yes. Frankly too many to name! From Jeremiah Gibbs, who inspired me to walk the Camino de Santiago, explore my faith, and who challenged me to be better, to Kirk Bryans, who helped me grow in my career and as a man! The staff here is superb.
I value the kindness of Dr. Ana Maria Ferreira who allowed me to sit in on her Spanish classes and learn and practice my Spanish skills. The intentionality of Dr. James Williams in his intellect and empathy as an advisor, boss, and friend has made my Honors experience exponentially better. My Honors advisor, Nathan Foley, provided a welcoming environment and one which fostered much ceramic and internal development. Many business faculty like Dr. Matt Will, Dr. Danny Powell, Dr. James Russell, and the list continues! I have a heart bursting with gratitude for the small and large acts of all the faculty.
What is one of your favorite memories from your time at UIndy?
The time spent in Spain while walking the Camino de Santiago with the Honors College is irrefutably up there on my list. Experiencing a new culture, forming lasting friendships, and practicing my Spanish all contributed to the 165 mile hike being so successful. Although not physically on campus, led by former chaplain Jeremiah Gibbs and current Director of the Honors College Dr. James Williams challenged me to think with a new perspective, allowed time for reflection and prayer, and added valuable insights from their own lives.
Which UIndy resources have helped you succeed or pursue new opportunities?
The Office of Study Abroad: Studying abroad in Spain for the Camino de Santiago allowed me to experience new culture, learn more about myself and those I walk with, and challenged me to take rest! Additionally, the trip was fully funded by the Honors college thus I reallocated my saved funds to visit and explore other parts of Spain and even Iceland visiting a friend I made in the Honors LLC our freshmen year.
The Office of Academic Advising: Andrea Walker within academic advising is a powerhouse! Keeping track of all the athletes is no easy task, yet she is incredibly organized and effective. Heck, I am graduating in 2.5 years, so she must have done something right!
The Stephen F. Fry Professional Edge Center: Kirk Bryans has enabled my success, which is manifested in comfortability in interviews, crafting resumes, and more tangibly in my full-time job.
What are your plans after graduation?
After December 16th, I will be singing at a wedding, celebrating Christmas, and subsequently departing for a five-month mission trip to Nicaragua. I plan to use this time to reflect, aid others, and become proficient in Spanish. Returning in June, I will begin my career at Cummins Inc. at the downtown Indianapolis location as a Financial Analyst.
How did your degree program prepare you for your next steps?
What advice would you give to incoming freshmen?
Say YES; put yourself out there, and be okay with the uncomfortable nature of new encounters, silence, and potential failure. You are here to learn and receive an education in the classroom and out!