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BGSU alumnus Tyler Dickard made a crucial industry connection while attending the annual Kuhlin Hub Career EXPO Week, which helped launch his career at Progressive Insurance.

Kuhlin Career Hub pivotal in helping BGSU software engineering student launch his career at Progressive Insurance

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Recent alumnus Tyler Dickard’s early professional success underscores the value of building a network while in college

By Laren Kowalczyk ‘07

With a full-time job offer already secured, Tyler Dickard '23 attended a career expo at Bowling Green State University during his senior year simply to connect with people in the information technology industry and grow his professional network.

But as he walked around the packed room of recruiters from top local and national companies, Dickard’s networking became more than skill development.

It opened the door to a new opportunity in software engineering, underscoring the value of making industry connections while still in college.

“I would not be where I am today without the comprehensive career design support BGSU provided,” said Dickard, who graduated in 2023 with a bachelor’s degree in software engineering.

Dickard is an associate IT apps developer at Progressive Insurance, a Fortune 500 company headquartered near Cleveland. He received an offer to work for the insurance giant after interviewing with recruiters he met at the University’s Kuhlin Hub Career EXPO Week held by the Michael and Sara Kuhlin Hub for Career Design and Connections.

The annual Kuhlin Hub Career EXPO Week allows BGSU students and alumni to engage with hundreds of local and national employers in one place. This intentional week-long networking experience is just one example of how BGSU helps students build career confidence and establish professional connections.

A person shaking hands with another person.
The annual Kuhlin Hub Career EXPO Week is just one example of how BGSU helps students build career confidence and establish personal connections. (BGSU photo/Haven Conn '22)

An integral part of the University’s Life Design ecosystem, the Kuhlin Career Hub is setting a new standard for inclusive career design support by helping students launch successful, fulfilling careers.

As a facilitator of corporate partnerships at BGSU, one way the Kuhlin Career Hub helps students make meaningful connections with industry professionals and alumni is through the Falcon Professional Network. Through those connections, students learn directly from professionals in their chosen careers and gain practical experience through internships and co-ops to refine career goals and aspirations.

“The value of students engaging with our corporate partners cannot be understated,” said Steve Russell, associate vice president for corporate partnerships and executive director of the Kuhlin Career Hub. “A staggering number of opportunities are not publicly posted, but through the BGSU network, students can seek job offers that align with their skills and values.”

Throughout college, Dickard took advantage of the many services provided through the Kuhlin Career Hub to build confidence in his decision to major in software engineering. He also regularly attended BGSU career expos, understanding the value of building professional connections as a student.

During his junior year, Dickard landed an internship through a connection he made at a BGSU career expo, which allowed him to test out a career in software engineering and led to his first full-time job offer.

“It’s a good feeling knowing that the Kuhlin Career Hub not only contributed to my professional success, but it’s also going to help future BGSU students succeed,” Dickard said.

Now approaching one year in his role at Progressive, Dickard also credits his success to the strength of the University’s software engineering program. He said the technical knowledge and theory he learned in the program mirrors what he’s now doing professionally.

In some instances, Dickard said he’s even ahead of the curve.

“My team recently moved to a new methodology in development, and I had already learned that methodology in college,” he said. “BGSU has an incredible software engineering program that has prepared me for my career. I’m really proud to be a BGSU graduate.”

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Media Contact | Michael Bratton | mbratto@bgsu.edu | 419-372-6349

Updated: 06/21/2024 10:39AM