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Alex Kiepert: Building a Future in Finance

February 15, 2019

Alex Kiepert is a freshman double majoring in Accounting and Finance at the Shields School of Business. He is a member of the Red Flash golf team and is involved in Enactus, uWorkStudent Government Association, The Honors Program, Class Council, Student Philanthropy Ambassadors, Apple Leadership Team, National Society of Leadership and Success, and the Flash Leadership Institute. 

 

Alex KiepertWhy did you choose SFU?

Saint Francis University has been a school that was always in the back of my head throughout my college search. What ultimately made me pick Saint Francis was that it is twenty-five minutes from my house, the Division I collegiate golf experience, the people, and the opportunities. The people here at Saint Francis really do care and want you to succeed. 

Why did you choose to major in both Accounting and Finance? What type of student were you in high school that led to your decision?

I had a few friends from high school who came to Saint Francis to double major in Accounting and Finance. They had an influence on me, but the older I became, the more interested I became in both subjects. I took an Accounting class in high school, and after doing very well, I decided I wanted to keep going. The school didn’t have a second Accounting class at the time, so I went to the guidance office and asked if they could offer another. They obliged, and I can say that I got through Accounting II with very good grades.

During these times, I also began to read the local newspaper, The Wall Street Journal, and The Morning Brew. A very special perk about double majoring in Accounting and Finance at SFU is that you only need to take a few additional classes to complete the double major. I see having accounting skills as imperative for breaking into the business world because of the need to read and interpreting financial statements.

What has your first year at SFU been like? Anything you didn't expect?

My first year at Saint Francis has been amazing. Now granted, the shift from living at home and going to high school was definitely different, but once I got over that, the Saint Francis experience seemed to become unlocked. The people here and the values the University holds all amount to a fantastic experience.

If I was to be brutally honest, the only thing I didn’t expect was that the professors would be as helpful as they actually are. People always say that the professors at colleges are helpful, but for me, there was still the stigma of “at the end of the day, the professors don’t really care." That statement is completely and utterly false. Every professor in the Shields School of Business has an open-door policy, meaning that if you have a question about anything, you can knock and walk right in.

One distinct memory I have from my first semester is from my Financial Accounting class. I had a question, and my professor was not in the office that day. So I just walked into another professor’s office who teaches a different section of Financial Accounting and got the help I needed. This was an amazing experience and a great example of what the professors are like in the Shields School of Business.

Alex KiepertWhat extracurricular activities do you participate in?

In the School of Business, I am a member of the Investment Club and Enactus. In Enactus, I am co-leader of the newly established Uwork project. This amazing opportunity has allowed me to develop project management experience as a freshman. A unique opportunity like this is helping me Become that Someone. 

Outside of the School of Business, I am a member of the golf team, Student Government Association, The Honors Program, Class Council, Student Philanthropy Ambassadors, Apple Leadership Team, National Society of Leadership and Success, and the Flash Leadership Institute. 

What do you look forward to accomplishing during your SFU career? 

The ultimate goal that I look forward to accomplishing each and every day here at Saint Francis University is to graduate with a double major in Accounting and Finance. However, another goal would be to walk across the graduation stage and know that I took advantage of all the opportunities that Saint Francis provided me. In particular, the Shields School of Business takes a trip every year and in 2018, they went to the New York Stock Exchange. Traveling to NYC and visiting the NYSE would be an amazing experience.

Are there any ways in particular that Shields business professors have mentored or guided you?

During my second semester in my freshman year, I was very fortunate to be named a co-leader of Uwork, a newly established Enactus project that helps high-risk job seekers gain employment in competitive work environments. Kent Tonkin is one of the Enactus advisors and business professors in the Shields School of Business. He has been a great resource to me during my first project leadership role. Kent is always willing to meet and offer advice, which is extremely helpful.  

What is your ultimate career goal? Do you want to live somewhere in particular after you graduate?

My ultimate career goal is to have a fulfilling financial job in the public sector. More specifically, however, being financially independent and happy are the two large career goals. To answer your question of where I want to live; I am not really sure. I am open to any location. The buzz of the city seems really interesting but I also love the idea of being in the countryside like I am now in Loretto! 

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