ALUMNI

 

  • State Farm

  • JC3 Inc.

  • Lenovo

  • HDR Engineering

  • American Transport Group LLC

  • Maxim Healthcare

  • Superior industrial Cleaning

  • General Electric

  • Groupon, Inc

  • Chase Banks

  • Real Living Realty Services

  • Delia Real Estate Group

Where are they now?

MANAGERS

 

  • Integrated Data Storage

  • PNC Bank’s Private Client Group

  • First Investor

  • Quicken Loans

  • Red Robin Company

  • Twin Cities Siding Professionals

  • Arch Grants

  • Next Generation Lending

  • Real Estate Broker

  • Sales/Efficiency Manager

  • Union Advisors

  • Target

 

“My freshman year I received a call in my dorm room about an opportunity to make 8-10K a summer. I was told to go to the Bernhard Center for more information the following day if I was interested. I attended and spoke to an older Western student named Tim Koster. He explained the responsibilities of the job and what it entailed. Every detail of this job seemed challenging; however, I was up for the task. In 2004, I was hired as a branch manager. I stayed with the company throughout my college education and learned more about business through experience than I ever would have sitting in a classroom. I learned how to make it in the real world at a young age and was able to gain a competitive edge over my peers. My junior and senior year of college I made 20K+ in the summer as a regional manager. When I graduated, I found multiple jobs right out of school and I was able to choose wisely on what company I wanted to associate myself with, as opposed to friends and peers who were scraping to find whatever company would hire them on a low pay structure. Overall, Student Painters gave me an awesome opportunity to make great money throughout college, but an even better opportunity to gain the real world experience that companies are looking for. I can honestly say that I wouldn’t be where I am today if I didn’t work with this company throughout my college years.”

Joe Napoli

Industrial Uniform Sales Rep Cintas

 “I worked happily and successfully at Student Painters for 5 years throughout my college career at Western Michigan University and into my first year post-graduate year, while also working full time. In that time I made more money than I thought possible at that point in my life and was doing it on my own terms along with the guidance and support of Student Painters leadership. In addition to financial success which was paramount through school, I was able to develop skills and experiences that would shape my early career and prepare me for the next phase of my life. Working autonomously, facing adversity and making sometimes difficult business decisions gave me the content to confidently answer situational interview questions that I would have otherwise had nothing to draw from. In essence, I believe stepping out of my comfort zone to take on this challenge was one of the best decisions I have made in my life and would recommend it to anyone with the will and attitude to succeed.”

Davio A. Pignotti

Account Executive XO Communications

“Choosing to be a part of Young Entrepreneur’s Across America (YEAA) was one of the best decisions of my life. As a branch manager, I gained extremely valuable experience. My YEAA mentor contributed an immense amount of training and guidance that allowed me to feel comfortable running my own business. YEAA provided me with a line-of-credit through Sherwin Williams, which allowed me to purchase all of the materials that I needed to get started. It was comforting to know that I was not expected to pay for anything up front. Throughout my experience, I found that YEAA is an incredibly transparent company- they were very upfront about what would be expected of me and how I would be compensated. I always knew that YEAA was looking out for my best interest. During the summer, my Student Painters business made $40,000 in revenue. I earned about $5,000 in profit and each of my painters earned thousands of dollars as well. Most importantly, the experience that I had running my own business was second-to-none. With the help of YEAA, I built my business from the ground up, and this offered me the opportunity to encounter all aspects of the business world. I gained valuable skills in sales, marketing, finance, recruiting, employee management, time management, and so much more. I strongly believe that this experience is the biggest reason I was able to obtain a Marketing Internship with Steelcase at their Global Headquarters in Grand Rapids. Not only did YEAA set my resume apart from the rest, but it has also made me more capable and effective at this great internship with Steelcase. To be honest, it was very tough to make the decision to leave Student Painters for Steelcase. I had an excellent experience with YEAA and I know that if I returned for another summer, I would have been even more successful.”

Andrew Bennett
Marketing Internship/Steelcase

"My time with student painters was one that I will never forget. During the summer, I learned how to effectively manage my time as well as efficiently managing a paint crew. Student Painters taught me what it takes to own your own business and how to be successful. Some may think, ‘how can running an exterior painting business help me with my career?’ I majored in finance at WMU and am pursuing a career in Investment Advertising. In my career choice, it is very important to know how to grow a book of business, communicate with clients effectively, and close a sale. Student Painters will teach you all of this. From learning how to market your business, to learned how to communicate with each client on all of their needs. I learned different sales techniques that taught me how to close a sale with each different type of client. Choosing to do this internship will be fun, tough and gives you something to be proud of. It has helped me get to where I am today and I recommend this internship to anyone who was an entrepreneurial mindset and is up for the challenge that will be the building blocks of a successful career."

David Thomas
Investment Advising/Western Michigan University 

 

To play, press and hold the enter key. To stop, release the enter key.

“The long-term confidence in oneself that comes from running a business, at a young age, and while in school is hard to beat. The project management skills I learned at Student Painters has also helped me come out ahead numerous times professionally.”

Spencer Giesen
Business and Consulting Professional 

 

“Managing people was a big takeaway from being a Branch Manager- hiring right the first time also saved me a lot of headache. Customer service is invaluable; under promise, over deliver. Planning ahead with Marketing Efforts creates great sales results”

Alecia Hitchman
Sales/Efficiency Manager NiceShirt.Org


 

“The confidence to be an entrepreneur and knowing you can succeed at anything you put your heart and mind into. Breaking down the barrier that young people can provide sound advice to older generations. I have run my own business ever since and will never look back. In reflection, I attribute a large part of my professional success to my 4 years with Student Painters.”

 

Mark Reichow
Financial Advisor at Union Advisors

"My journey with Student Painters began as a freshman at Miami University in 1997.  I received information about an opportunity to “run a business” and gain “real world business skills”.  I went to an informational session and was very excited about the opportunity.  I interviewed and was hired to run a branch of Student Painters in Dayton, Ohio.  My first summer was full of ups and downs but overall I gained a tremendous amount of experience and confidence in myself in the world of business.  I decided to come back for a second year as a branch manager and grew a first season $45,000 business into a highly profitable $85,000 business.  Later choosing a career path as a high school science teacher opened up summers for me to continue working with Student Painters.  Over the past 15 years, I have hired and trained many students to run their very own business and gain real-world skills as an entrepreneur.  I have heard time and time again from past managers that their experience with Student Painters helped pave the way for future success in interviews and jobs.  If you are willing to work hard and enjoy a challenge I encourage you to join the Student Painter family.  I have been blessed by the relationships and experiences over the years and highly recommend this program."

 

Scott Snyder
High School Biology/Earth Science Teacher
Tipp City Schools

"This is easy, Student Painters was everything to me.  I gained Charlie Licari as a mentor and hired Ryan Henderson to be a branch manager, both stood up in my wedding and are two of my closest friends. Two different businesses I went into after college were with Student Painters Alumni, Ryan Henderson with Wrestling Addix which is now a million dollar clothing brand, and AJ Mida with a multi-million dollar gold party business. Student Painters laid the foundation for all of us and we constantly referenced experiences and training Student Painters provided when making decisions on our own business. I’m not sure what my life would be today without the friends and network I gained from Student Painters.

 

Today I’m a successful Realtor & Real Estate investor in Southeast Michigan. The ability I gained with SP to hear what your client is asking for has allowed me to score a 100% client satisfaction rating conducted by an independent third party service. The marketing I did to be successful in Student Painters and the little things on how to talk to people I implement in my Real Estate business daily. By far the most important skill learned was how to manage people. Another thing that I learned is to talk about anything and everything except the product you’re involved in. When I go on listing appointments, I don’t talk about their house more than I have to, I talk about their kids, their college, any personal items where our interests overlap. People want to do business with people they like. Ask a question and sit back and listen, the less you talk and listen, the better off you are.

 

I’ve done millions in business and will be doing millions more with the network and experiences I gained from being apart of Student Painters."

 

Joe Delia
Real Estate Group

"I ran a business with Triple A Student Painters for three years from the late 1990’s through the early 2000’s. My position with this company allowed me to gain experience in areas such as leadership, management, and recruitment. My second and third year with the company allowed me to oversee multiple work crews which in turn, were successful themselves.  I see this as a direct impact of the management skills developed my first year. At one point I became an award-winning executive, in which I still proudly display the award in my home today. Student Painters allowed me to get where I am now. Today I run my own company, one that has grown large enough to merge with Wells Fargo. I have many accomplishments with my career, and the skills gained with this internship program are a main contributor to it."

 

Ryan Foster
Next Generation Lending

My wife and I started with Student Painters in 1995.  We learned all we needed to know about how to manage a successful business in our 5 years with Student Painters.  All of the building blocks for learning how to be a successful entrepreneur area there.  Marketing, sales, production management, strategic planning, forecasting, human resource management, time management are just a few of the skills we learned during our tenure. We truly loved our experience and would not change anything!

 

My wife and I have continued to work together as we started a remodeling company in St Paul, MN in 1999.  Our company, Twin Cities Siding Professionals, is a nationally recognized James Hardie Preferred Contractor.   Certainly, the skills and experience we gained from our years in Student Painters have enabled us to manage our company successfully. Our continued thanks to Steve and the Student Painters family!

Terry Stamman
Twin Cities Siding Professionals

"My experience at Student Painters as a Branch Manager put me up a path of entrepreneurship that I am still on today.  I learned more about accountability, employee management, and of course, entrepreneurship, in my first summer at Student Painters than I did in all my years of undergraduate coursework.  Having graduated and worked in higher education, I have seen the spectrum of collegiate student experiences.  I can confidently say that there are very few experiential or academic engagements available to any level of college student that equal the leadership and growth opportunities at Student Painters.

 

Now, working with startup companies on a daily basis, I am consistently drawing upon my experiences at Student Painters both in giving illustrated examples to our entrepreneurs as well as simply recalling important lessons that I learned myself.  To say becoming a Branch Manager was influential in my life would be a drastic understatement.  From the connections that I made, to the income that I earned, to the experiences in entrepreneurship that I gained, Student Painters continues to give me the confidence to be the most impactful entrepreneurial professional that I can be."

Ben Burke
Arch Grants
Director of Operations

"As a driven and motivated college freshman, Student Painters provided an opportunity for me to build and run a business from the ground up. I hired a team, built a marketing plan, prospected and pitched new customers, and organized my team around our project each day. The experience I gained as a result of my time with Student Painters has proved to be invaluable throughout the roles I’ve held since that time. The foundation that was laid during that summer provided solid ground as I continue to build and improve upon the skills that I acquired during my time with Student Painters."

Greg Hockenbrocht
Private Banking Analyst at J.P. Morgan

"The Student Painters/Young Entrepreneurs Across America program gave me an entire secondary entrepreneurial education in addition to my engineering coursework. It provided me with a wealth of experiences that set me apart from my peers when I went to search for a job after college. The management and interpersonal skills I developed during my Student Painters experience have been invaluable to me in my life.  They even allowed me to start my own technology start-up venture only a year out of school and raise serious funding from venture capital investors. Without the skills and mentorship I received at Student Painter I don’t think any of it would have been possible!"

Paul Schrems-MI
HDR Engineering
Power Generation Division

"I enjoyed working for Student Painters for two summers. The staff was very great to me, very helpful and always there. I gained a tremendous amount of skills from Sales to Leadership to basically running my own business!  With graduation at MSU around the corner, I am ready to conquer the real world. I am ready to use the leadership and management skills Student Painters has rewarded me with. The experience alone was worth my time, but the skills it has left me with is unexplainable.  Putting Student Painters on my resume has never made me so proud of the work I’ve accomplished. Being able to tell an employer I ran a successful part-time business is a great feeling!  I would highly recommend this entrepreneurship opportunity to anyone and everyone! The outcome definitely overpowers the challenge!”

Jake McDonough

Michigan

"If you’re a student or parent – I was in your shoes a little over 2.5 years ago. I was very skeptical of this ‘Student Painters’ and if it was a legitimate opportunity. After doing some research, like reading some of these testimonials, I was very intrigued and decided to give it a shot. What did I have to lose but some of my time? I can now say without a doubt that it was the BEST decision I have ever made in my professional career.

 

Having recently graduated from college, I went through the job search process like any other student. Normally this is a stressful time for students as they are unsure if they will get a decent job let alone get one at all! My stress was different, though, as I was more worried not “if” but “how good” of one I could get.

 

After my experience with Student Painters, I went on to partake in multiple internships with a few of those big-time multi-billion dollar companies. They were great experiences and looked good on a résumé. When it came to interviewing for those awesome full-time jobs out of school, however, they were just that…names on a paper. Think of it this way:
If during an interview you get asked about how you were a leader, most students talk about how they took charge of a group/intern project or they were a shift manager somewhere. That’s great, but think if you could talk about how you were in charge of a $70,000 business – overseeing 4-6 of your peers and making sure they were always doing top-quality work to ensure complete customer satisfaction. Did you mention the part where you had to deal with stressful situations with customers, weather and employees? Oh yea…and I was 19 when I did all of this! You think employers don’t LOVE to hear about that?

 

Not only did I land a fantastic (!!) job opportunity out of school, but I was only able to do so because of my experience with Student Painters. I did not even mention my other internships because they couldn’t even compare. Companies nowadays no longer look for someone who just meets the basic requirements for an entry-level position. They are looking for someone who has fantastic work-ethic and leadership qualities that will help them move up within the company. I can tell you first-hand that this doesn’t happen from ‘shadowing’ people at other internships. You have to get out there and become that person from DOING IT and Student Painters is the best platform for that.


While this brief testimonial cannot even begin to do my wonderful experience with YEAA and Student Painters justice, I hope that it helped some of you decide to give it a shot. Take it from a kid who was too shy/awkward to even talk on the phone with my parents….this opportunity will help you become a more confident and resilient person as a whole. The benefits are innumerable. I am VERY thankful for what Student Painters has done for me and I wholeheartedly believe it can do the same for you."

John Doyle-MI
Merchandise Planning Business Analyst at Target

 

"After four years of tremendous entrepreneurial growth with Student Painters, I decided it was time to follow my Big Dream and pursue a career as a professional speaker. In September 2012, I left my full-time job with Student Painters and began my epic adventure of becoming an entrepreneur for a living. I’m currently in the process of marketing my speaking business and booking speaking engagements with different universities across the Southeast. Working with Student Painters has given me the sales knowledge and confidence necessary to take a leap of faith like this and push forward through one of the most uncomfortable times in my life, as I create my new business from scratch.

 

The biggest thing I learned about myself while working with Student Painters was that I flourish and grow the most when I am at my most uncomfortable state. With that being said, I couldn’t just stop at creating my speaking business, I am also developing my first ever software company. Speaking is in my comfort zone, but software development is something completely different. Student Painters not only showed me that young entrepreneurs can make lots of money at a young age, but also gave me the courage and understanding to pursue something that required even more of a paradigm shift in my mindset! Thanks, Student Painters for putting my life on the right path at such a young age."

James Roper- SC
Owner- JC3 Inc.

"The whole Student Painters experience has been invaluable to me.  No amount of class time or textbook reading could have taught me the things I learned over the course of this internship.  School provided me with knowledge and a great foundation, but Student Painters helped me to apply this knowledge and run my own business.  This internship has also helped me through school by teaching me better time-management.  I am currently a Sales Representative for Red Robin Company, and I just finished my Bachelor’s Degree in December 2012.  The skills and tools that I have gained through this hands-on experience have given me just the edge needed in the job market today.

 

I have also made many dependable and lifelong friends along my journey with Student Painters.  My rookie Branch Manager year was in 2010, but I continue to help Young Entrepreneurs Across America when my assistance is needed.  There are tons people in this company who will bend over backward to help you.  There are also so many like-minded individuals who are just as hard-working.  I am certain that this internship has helped me to see a successful future."

Marcus Blandon-IL
Red Robin Company

"I’d like to announce that I have taken a position with fastest growing major consumer PC brand in the world, Lenovo. The position is in the Accelerated Sales Program, and I will have jobs in all aspects of sales from inbound to outbound, and even in sales operations. This is a great opportunity as I will be exposed to so many different things, and the skills I will gain will be applicable to any sales position at any company. I would just like to thank you, and everyone at Student Painters for the opportunity and all of the knowledge I have gained. The main reason I landed this job was my experience at Student Painters, not my academic education. My resume clearly separated me from everyone else, and in every interview, the managers were very impressed with all of the skills I had to use in running a business. Not only did Student Painters help on my resume, but I now have great confidence in my overall communication skills, but in my sales skills as well. The bottom line is that because of Student Painters I was in the top 10 out of a little over 200 people interviewed. Just thought you would like to know that, and to possibly pass along to the managers now. They should know that the hard work they put in this spring and summer is not only going to produce returns in their business, but it is also very transferable to getting a job after college."

Charlie Apter- NC
Accelerated Sales Program- Lenovo

"The biggest thing employers are looking at when hiring right out of college is simply “What internship experience have you had?”.  I graduated from Miami University in May of 2013 and ran a $52,000 business with Student Painters the summer before my junior year.  The challenges I faced and overcame gave me the answers to every interview question imaginable.  While my friends and fellow students stumble through interviews, unable to recall experiences from their internships, I have thrived.  Before working with Student Painters I couldn’t tell you what my biggest weakness or strength was.  I had to be tested.  It gave me the experience and confidence to carry myself through interviews and presentations in college.  I have developed into a well-spoken, confident, and professional person largely in part to this internship.  While the income potential for this manager position is very high, its value will be much higher once you start your search for a career.  I am now able to work at the company I wanted to work for, in the city I’d hoped to be in.  Student Painters helped me get my first job out of college, and I couldn’t be more thankful for being a part of such an incredible organization.  If you give young people the tools to become successful, you’d be amazed at what they can accomplish."

Eric Sehlhorst- OH
Logistics Account Executive
American Transport Group LLC
Chicago, Illinois

Overall, I was thrilled with the skills and experience that I learned while working at Student Painters. SP gives you a chance to learn a lot of things that you can’t learn in the classroom. It is very challenging (especially at the beginning), but you will be successful as long as you are willing to put the work in. If I had not worked at Student Painters, I am not sure if I would be where I am today. My employer was very impressed with the experiences that I had while working there. It helped me make it through their interviewing process. The job market is tough right now and employers are looking for people who have demonstrated that they have strong leadership capabilities and are able to think quickly and deal with challenging situations. I would recommend SP to anyone who is looking for real-life experience that will separate them from their peers.

Tony Lamps

Ohio

"I attended Illinois State University and was hired in 2008 but worked during the 2009 season when I was 20-21 years old. I was a branch manager and an executive during my time with Student Painters. I only worked for Student Painters for two years but nothing was as great as seeing the look on a happy customer’s face as they hand you a check for thousands of dollars, and nothing is as challenging as learning how to maintain a job site, keep track of your employees and continue to make sales all at once. Time management was one of the most difficult yet important things I came across. If you want to achieve big as a branch manager just remember to hit the preseason HARD!

When I left Student Painters and graduated I got a job for Groupon, INC as their Account Executive. I’m now the Senior Account Executive for Groupon. Thanks to Student Painters I gained the ability to have confidence in myself and attack whatever task is at hand. More specifically, I gained the confidence and experience needed to become an Account Executive in the business world and close deals as part of monthly sales quotas.

Student Painters has given me the confidence to go and attack many other things in life. It has not only been a huge part of where I am at in my career today, but also the kind of person I am. The two years I spent with Student Painters forced me to develop a tremendous work ethic that has shaped my overall attitude towards my work and life balance that is still with me today."

Michael Tassone – Illinois
Senoir Account Executive – Groupon, Inc.

"I worked for Student Painters in 2006 when I was 20 years old. I went to Western Michigan University and stayed with Student Painters for four and a half years. During my first year, I won Rookie Manager of the Year and got to celebrate with the SP family on the cruise after a long summer. It’s probably my favorite memory during my four and half years. However, my worst would have to have to be my resistance to door-to-door cold calling which was by far the most effective way to generate leads. If you’re looking to get some advice it’s definitely, get out and cold call every waking minute you have.  Also, find some quality people to help you and pay them to cold call for you at the same time.

 

After I left Student Painters I worked at Coyote Logistics (sales). Having Student Painters on my resume was the single most important thing on my resume, but the primary function SP served in my job search process was in providing me the hands-on experience and problem solving/critical thinking skills needed to be a top performer.  Almost every difficult question I’ve been asked in an interview is something I can pull in an experience from SP from in some way. I am now an Account Executive at Integrated Data Storage (IT sales), and when I worked at Student Painters I learned what it means when something is “all on you” and you are responsible for 100% of your success or 100% of your failure. I still use that way of thinking to this day.

 

Student Painters is still like a family to me.  I know that I could call anybody that I worked with and they would be willing to listen, support me if needed, or just grab a beer!"

Davio Pignotti – Illinois
Account Executive – Integrated Data Storage

"I received my Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration from Central Michigan University.  My major was Personal Financial Planning & my Minor was in Psychology.  During my freshman and sophomore years (2003 and 2004), I was a branch manager at 18 and a Regional Manager at 19.

 

When I graduated I was a Financial Representative with Northwestern Mutual. Student Painters helped me tremendously.  The sales and management experience on my resume helped me stand out from my peers, which helped me get my foot in the door for an interview.  More importantly, the stories and experiences I was able to share during my interviews, set me apart from the competition and made the difference for me to get the job.

 

I now work as a Relationship Manager for PNC Bank’s Private Client Group. Even now in my current position, having been a Student Painter helps.  There are many things I learned from Student Painters that help me on a daily basis.  The most important being sales experience.  Marketing myself, making phone calls, setting appointments, looking for every opportunity to offer service above and beyond expectations.  I do these activities every day and I learned their importance from Student Painters.  I truly feel I had an edge coming out of school, having gone through the Student Painter program.

 

I was asked what my favorite and biggest challenge was being a branch manager. I have to say my favorite is the cruise at the end of the summer…those who were there, know what I’m talking about!  Just kidding.  I would say my favorite memory was when I was also honored by the City of Novi for putting together a charity paint training for a historic building.  It was a lot of work coordinating everyone involved, but I felt very proud shaking hands with the Mayor and being honored at the Novi Civic Center.

 

As for my biggest challenge, what a loaded question that was.  There were many challenges.  Tough customers, booking enough work to keep your painters busy, managing costs, etc…  However, the biggest challenge for me was firing some of my friends that weren’t cutting it and replacing them with hard workers who wanted to be there and work.  Learning the difference between business & friendship was a hard, but valuable lesson.  I am still friends with those I let go, and we still joke about it 10 years later.

 

So my advice for future managers is: you only get out of it, what you put into it.  I worked harder than anyone I knew at 18 and 19, but the payoff in experience and financial compensation was well worth it.  Don’t reinvent the wheel.  The sales process works.  Listen to your District or Regional Manager and be coachable enough to try something new.  Do something that puts you out of your comfort zone every day.   It’s a sure way to grow both personally and professionally.  Keep a positive attitude.  You can set the tone for everyone around you, and people like to work with happy, positive people.

 

I personally had a great experience with Student Painters.  I don’t think I would be the person I am today if I hadn’t gone through the program.  I have a passion for delivering exceptional customer service to every client, every time.  Student Painter’s helped develop that drive and set the bar high for achieving this.  For this, I am forever grateful."

Eric Schleuder- Michigan
Relationship Manager – PNC Bank’s Private Client Group

"I was a branch manager during the summer of 2006 when I was just 18 years old. I then worked my way into a regional and district manager position for the company as I finished at Northern Illinois University. I even stayed two more years after I graduated, making my history with the company a total of five years.  The five years I was able to put on my resume gave me an advantage during interviews not only with impressive skills and accomplishments but by giving me something to explain my abilities. Without Student Painters on my resume, I would not have had as successful interviews.  My resume impressed First Investors, which was my first and current job out of college.  I have gained more abilities from Student Painters than I can think of but two that stand out are confidence and experience. I knew that with the struggles and successes with student painters I could handle any interview or position I was applying for.

 

Besides the friendships and of course the yearly cruise, my favorite memory of Student Painters was achieving the most production for a rookie manager my first two weeks. It took many hours of hard work to achieve and it gave me the confidence to excel at a high level at Student Painters. During the hard work, you will be faced with challenges. My biggest challenge was keeping my crew and myself motivated over the long summer.  It was a struggle to work diligently throughout the preseason and summer was difficult too but it always paid out tenfold at the end of the summer.

 

After five years of being with Student Painters, it has brought me lifelong friendships with my district managers and fellow branch managers I met. Without Student Painters, I would not have been able to graduate with little debt or have the experiences I did every summer. I can’t express enough how thankful I am to have taken that leap of faith back in 2006!

 

So my advice for everyone becoming a branch manager is: Control your emotions. If you let it, this internship can give you a roller coaster of experiences even in one summer. Keep a level head through the highs and lows and you’ll be able to achieve a business you didn’t think was possible."

Jesse Stabile- Illinois
First Investor
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"I attended Central Michigan University and was a branch manager my sophomore year the summer of 2006 and stayed with the company for 2 years. After I left Student Painters my first job out of college was McDonald's. The Student Painters experience has helped invaluably in every single interview that I have had since. Every time an interviewer asks a question that starts with, “Describe a time when…” or “Tell me about a situation in which…” I always have a large number of incredible experiences from which to draw. This has really given me an advantage over other candidates and has made me very comfortable in interview situations. Right now I currently work as a Personal Banker with Chase Bank. Student Painters for me was a two-year-long exercise in problem-solving, customer service, and delivering excellent results. In my current job, I work with all different types of people with a wide variety of needs. My experience with Student Painters has helped me in this role by allowing me to quickly and creatively think of alternative solutions to problems and issues; keep my cool with difficult customers; exceed expectations on a regular basis; identify needs more readily, and present sales proposals more effectively.

 

As I look back at my time spent with Student Painters I have this to say:

 

Greatest Memory: I had a great crew and we were all very close. Toward the end of the summer, we were working on a lake house and the homeowner gave us permission to go for a swim any time we wanted. All week we spent our lunches cooling off in the lake, and it was a great time.

 

Biggest challenge as a branch manager:  Time management. There were always a million things that I could have been doing, but identifying which were the most important and getting them done was a big challenge.

 

Advice for new managers:  Hire a good crew. If you find yourself worried to leave the job site (other than in the first few weeks, of course), you probably have one or two crew members who shouldn’t be on your team. Don’t waste time and energy on toxic employees. Find good people to replace them, it will be the most valuable thing you can do for your business.

 

Finally, on a personal level, Student Painters has made me more confident and more outgoing, and my experience proved that even if something seems incredibly difficult and that I might not be ready for it, I can succeed at it if I work hard."

Dan Pianki – Michigan
Personal Banker – Chase Banks


 

“From my experience, a person will succeed and overcome challenges if they have two essential items; knowledge & will. When I was hired by Steve Acorn in 2001 I had the will to be successful but not the knowledge. The key to Student Painters continued success is their ability to relay and implement their knowledge of business to students. Within a four-month period, I had acquired the tools of business which involved accounting, budgeting, financing, payroll, sales, marketing, production, and profit and loss. This knowledge set me above my peers after graduation. I had the honor of working with this great organization for seven years. I came back year after year because I enjoyed the success Student Painters brought to so many eager students who wanted to better themselves and become successful businessmen and women. I have countless examples of students who have benefited from this organization and I encourage anyone who has the will to be successful, but needs the knowledge to consider a position with Student Painters.”

James George- Michigan
Maxim Healthcare Services


 

“I began working for Student Painters during my college career at Ferris State University. The organization provided an opportunity to learn a number of skills; including professionalism, determination, time management, and conflict resolution. After graduating from college, I worked in sales for a number of years before joining my father’s business. In 2003, I bought out my father and became the sole owner of Superior Industrial Cleaning. I still have fond memories of my career with Student Painters. I believe it is an excellent stepping stone for those wanting to start their own business.”

Rick Snow- Michigan
Superior Industrial Cleaning

 

“Student Painters was the ultimate college experience for me. I was able to have the autonomy of a business owner while having the support of a great team behind me. I learned so much about responsibility and the work ethic that it took to run a successful operation. The rewards were great, financially and professionally. It was a great advantage to be in presence of many other young, driven individuals such as myself, and many of whom are still good friends. We worked hard and learned how to have a lot of fun while doing it. Student Painters helped develop me as a professional and certainly benefits me to this day. Currently, I am an Accounts Manager for Maxim Healthcare Services. While the industry is different, it is the same ideals that help me be successful at running my own home healthcare operation. Steve Acorn and his team instilled the strong ethics, character, and integrity that remain with me every day. He is a great leader, who I still look up to today. I can truly say that I owe a lot of my success to the experience that I gained working with Student Painters.”

 

UPDATE-October 2011

 I have gone into business with Scott Barry and created Centria Healthcare. We are completing our 2nd year, and will exceed 1.5 million in sales! Next years expectations/reality should far exceed this. I am not throwing the numbers out there to be annoying, but to say that nearly ONCE PER WEEK, we cite the lessons and CAN DO attitude that we learned at Student Painters. That program with Steve’s (and your) leadership and support is a truly special experience for those who succeed. This is the basis that made us successful business owners."

Chris Wilcox- Michigan
Maxim Healthcare Services

 

“Student Painters helped construct a strong foundation for my career in business and sales. Without the guidance of Steve and Charlie and the business concepts I learned from them, I would have never been able to open my own marketing business in 2007 – UniPics Marketing, INC. Student Painters gave me real-world experience in business which a college class could not offer. I have built my own business from the ground up and also work as an account executive for the U.S. Cellular Coliseum in Bloomington, IL. I would highly recommend Student Painters to any motivated, energetic college student. The experience alone is worth the commitment, not to mention the unlimited potential of earnings.”

Jon Gusanders- Illinois
Bloomington Prairie Thunder

 

"Working with Student Painters over the past four years has prepared me more for real life than I ever anticipated it would. My career path within the company went from branch manager to regional manager, and then to district manager for two years. During these four years with the company, I have learned countless skills that have turned me into a well-rounded person which make me more successful in my everyday life and career. I now use these skills every day within my current job for an aerospace and Defense Company. I have had multiple reviews with a lot of positive reinforcement for being reliable, hard working, maintain positive attitude always, proactive, mature for my age, and self-confident. I am certain that my success now is a result of my personal growth through Student Painters. I learned through all of my successes and failures that I will always be successful in the long run if I hold myself accountable by seeking success opposed to sitting by and waiting for it."

Justin Evers
BF Goodrich

 

"At the age of 18, I could proudly say that I had successfully run my own business. While most college freshmen were working 9-5 jobs, I decided to take a leap of faith with Student Painters. At Student Painters, they believe in the truth of hard work and willingness do whatever is necessary to be a winner. Success here isn’t solely defined by financial gain. Instead it is defined by a combination of new friendships, personal development, revenue and profit. The biggest skill I learned was to persevere at any cost. To break through any barrier in your way. I cannot thank the company enough for the role it’s played in my life, but what I can do is mentor others sharing the knowledge and wisdom I have acquired from my years with Student Painters."

AJ Mida
Real Estate Broker

 

Even though my time with Students Painters was not for long, I had a great time & experience. It was a treat to see everyone’s face in the office on a daily basis. I loved working hand in hand with my fellow staff members. I have made great friendships and met many amazing people along the way. Student Painters has taught me a lot from the time I have been a part of their wonderful program. Meeting the executives and getting to know the managers was a great pleasure. A very special moment I was able to experience was taking part in the Michigan/Ohio training seminar. The time spent at the seminar opened my eyes to see how much hard work each manager puts into this amazing opportunity. I am very sad to be saying goodbye, but I have been offered an opportunity I cannot pass up. I will be moving on to pursue my career in the psychology field at Crittenten Hospital. I would like to thank all of the management staff for giving me this great chance to improve myself and be involved with a great group of people. I hope to keep in touch with everyone I have been working with for the past couple months and I wish everyone in the company with best of luck. 

Erica Scroggie
Winter 2015

 

Throughout my journey with Student Painters, I have learned an astronomical amount. I have grown tremendously professionally and personally from the experiences with this company. I started out as an Administrative Assistant and grew with the company, ending my journey here in a top management position. This company has allowed me to develop certain skills such as marketing, management, finance, public relations, and human resources. I cannot say enough for what Student Painters has done for me. Not only was it an incredible opportunity professionally, it also allowed me to create lifelong bonds with a strong network of future business leaders. Student Painters will always hold a special spot in my life as I start a new journey.

Hayley DeGrandchamp
2012-2015

 

I began working for Student Painters in 2011/2012 in the call center. I joined the team again in June 2014 as a receptionist. I graduated from Michigan State University with a major in Marketing. Working for a business like Student Painters helps me gain the skills and knowledge beneficial to the business career path I am interested in. Throughout my career at Student Painters, I have worked with great people and gained experience I can apply to future careers. I am grateful to have worked for this company.

Lindsey Lombardo
2011-2014

 

I began working for Student Painters in May of 2014 and very much enjoyed my experience with the company. I will be graduating from Michigan State University in the spring of 2018 with a degree in Chemical Engineering. The skills I acquired through my work at Student Painters will be extremely beneficial as I advance in my intended career path.  Working with this company allowed me to develop as a student in a professional atmosphere, further preparing me for the “real world” beyond college. I am very thankful for this opportunity to work in a setting I had previously been unfamiliar with. I look forward to applying the so many things I have learned at Student Painters into my professional life in the future.

Megan Macciomei
Summer 2014

 

I was hired with Student Painters in March 2012. I have recently begun attending Macomb Community College full time to finish my major in business. I plan to finish my schooling at Oakland University. While working for Student Painters, I became the head receptionist, the newsletter editor-in-chief, and also an assistant supervisor for the recruiting department. This company gave me the opportunity to learn and grow in my personal and professional life. I will always have great memories with some of the best co-workers I could have asked for.

 

Gabriella Trueman
2012-2014

 

I graduated from Central Michigan University with a major in Integrative Public Relations and minoring in Marketing, Advertising, and Leadership. I worked for the Student Painters Team last summer and have already learned so much through the company as a receptionist and an office assistant.  There is never a dull moment in the Student Painters office; those ladies sure do know how to get the work done while having an awesome time! I am currently employed as an Account Manager for The Dow Chemical Company.

 

 

Raechel Kaiser
Summer 2013

 

I started working at Student Painters in the late summer of 2005 fresh out of high school. While attending Oakland University to get a degree in Human Resources Development, I was able to work year round for the company. I started as the receptionist and worked my way to become the Compliance Manager during the spring/summer seasons and the Recruiting Supervisor during the fall/winter seasons. I have been able to watch many students like myself grow into well rounded young adults through the challenges and rewards we face in the business. Student Painters has taught me many life skills that I will be able to incorporate not only into my degree but also in my future as a person. Since leaving Student Painters, I have a resume I am confident in, fun memories, and made great friendships.

 

 

Lisa Licari

2005-2012

 

I graduated from Western Michigan University and during my time with the company, I genuinely enjoyed working there and participating in the company events. Starting off as an administrative assistant has really prepared me for a career after college. I feel that I’ve improved on skills such as working with computers, being more organized and communicating with customers. Student Painters is a great place for anyone to start off in the business world. I am currently employed as a Senior Loan Officer and Team Leader for Hall Financial! 

Carla Campanella

2006-2011

 

I joined the Student Painters team this past May of 2011. I was a Receptionist/Event Coordinator/Office Assistant with the responsibilities of answering phones, office duties, assisting customers and planning/organizing the events that are yearly traditions. I am heading into my senior year of college at Western Michigan University majoring in Occupational Therapy. This job was a great way to learn responsibility, the meaning of hard work and organization.

Sarah "Mimi" Rogers

Summer 2011

 

I started working in the Student Painters Recruiting Department in the fall of 2013. I continued to work in the office first as a co-op employee through school and eventually as an Administrative Assistant. I am a senior at Central Michigan University. I am undecided on my major but am leaning towards going into the business field. I really enjoyed working in an office environment and have learned many important business essentials. Overall I am grateful for this opportunity. I enjoyed my job and look forward to using the skills I learned at Student Painters in my future endeavors.

Hannah Thomas
2013-2015

 

OFFICE STAFF

Past managers will tell you that their individual success hinged on a single factor: themselves. Through their personal accountability, unparalleled work ethic, dedication and unbridled enthusiasm, they overcame every obstacle and experienced a winning summer.

 

 

What skills, gained at Student Painters, do you still use today?

I received the opportunity to join the Student Painters team in April of 2014. I graduated from Oakland University with a degree in Human Resources Management. I  enjoyed gaining new skills and knowledge that helped me in the world of business. One day I hope to be an entrepreneur so that was a way to help me gain experience and learn all aspects of business. This past summer I held the title of Receptionist within the company. I continued my employment throughout the fall by assisting in marketing as I attended Central Michigan University for my first two years of school. I am currently employed as a Business Intern with Populus Group, LLC.

Liz O'Brien
2014-2015

 

Throughout my time here as the HR/Payroll Manager, I have learned an immense amount of knowledge when it comes to running a business properly and effectively. It has been wonderful being able to meet and build relationships with the managers and executives. I have greatly appreciated and learned from the opportunities I have had with Student Painters, all of which I will take with me throughout my career. I have enjoyed working at Student Painters and will miss the team!

Lindsay Storrison
2015

 

I started at Student Painters in February of 2008. Through my 7+ years with the company, I have been able to be part of many different positions within the company, from Administrative Assistant to Office Manager to now Support Consultant. The knowledge I have gained working here and the mentoring I have received has helped me become a successful entrepreneur with my fiancé, Dan Chunn and the Michigan Revolution F.C. Not only professionally, but personally, this has been my family for many years, I have enjoyed and will embrace all the memories that I was able to be part. To my Student Painter family, I will miss each of you dearly and thank you for being my family.

Lisa Harris
2008-2015

 

I have been a part of the YEAA Family for over 2 years now, going on 3. Because of this company, I’ve grown personally and professionally more than I could have ever imagined in just two short years. I can’t wait to see where my third year will take me! It is always wild thinking back what I was like just two years ago – no direction, discipline, or confidence. Each year, YEAA gives young people like me an opportunity to prove to themselves what they are capable of. My first year, I ran a $60,000 business without any prior business experience. I gained some direction, discipline, and a lot of confidence. After my second year, my personal and professional skills grew even more than the first year. My time with YEAA has been the most challenging, revealing, and valuable experience of my life. The growth that occurs during such a test is irreplaceable. I am extremely thankful that I was awarded the opportunity to push myself to my limits and accomplish things I had never even dreamt of doing. Now as a General Manager, I get to give other young people the same opportunity that changed my life. Each day I am challenged to inspire and push these students to improve and grow. I am extremely excited to see what wonders lie ahead for each one of the wonderful individuals I have met within the YEAA Family, including those yet to join!

 

 

Experience will forever and always be the best teacher, and there is no better way to learn and grow than by flinging yourself from your comfort zone and taking the road less traveled. The skills I have learned and the confidence I have developed in my three years with YEAA pertaining to the fields of entrepreneurship and business management far surpass anything I could have gained from a four-year degree in the same fields. YEAA is truly the best Student Development company of its type; teaching not only sales techniques and leadership, but molding its interns into professional, accountable, determined, and experienced business owners in just one short summer. My professional growth over the past three years is matched only by my personal growth. Having the chance to interact with such motivated, driven, and hardworking young people from all over the country has allowed me the opportunity to forge lifelong friendships with dozens of like-minded individuals who have taken on this opportunity and relish the truly unique challenges that this internship provides. For the driven and motivated student tired of the same old corporate internships and boring summer jobs, for the student seeking to enhance their life resume and set themselves apart from their peer group, there is no possible reason to look anywhere else.

 

 

Eric Fraser
 

Simon Fraser
 

In my past 3 years with YEAA I have gained more experience and knowledge than any classroom would ever teach me. In this time I have overseen over $500,000 in gross sales. It has been an incredible learning experience and a great journey. I am looking forward to beginning my full-time role as the general manager of the Missouri Division and helping other college students attain the same success I’ve had.

 

Chris Moore

I started YEAA when I was a junior in college. My first summer I ran a $73,000 business and profited $9,500. More important than the money, though, was the life-changing experience I had through the internship. I learned more about the real world and real business in 6 months with YEAA than I did my entire college career. There is nothing like running your own business while still in college. You experience all the highs and all the lows. It was by far the hardest thing I have ever done, but it was also where I learned the most. I came back my second year as an Executive and trained 5 other college students how to run their own businesses. My team produced $365,000 ( 2 of them being freshmen in college). As hard as it is to believe, I learned even more my second year and profited around $22,000. If you want to win early in life and are willing to put in the work, this is the internship for you.
Throughout my experience with Student Painters, I have learned so much. I have grown as a person and as a businessman. I marketed a painting business with no painting knowledge. I recently spoke with the manager of Sherwin Williams and he told me I had more drive than most contractors by going out and heavily marketing a territory on a consistent basis. Most painters can’t say they have dropped ten thousand plus fliers in a couple of months or that they paid out 80 cold calling hours. I have learned how to market. I have also learned how to spot a good employee from a bad one and that even the best interviews don’t always come through; seeing them with a paintbrush is needed. Production has been the most difficult part for me throughout the summer. Learning how to manage a crew as well as myself took longer than it should have. One of the most influential things I learned I that I am a natural seller. I had a customer put on paper, “Alex can sell Ice to Eskimos!” Selling, however, does no good if you cannot produce it. If you can’t produce, you don’t market. Customers have been good and bad. I have learned to close a deal and fix problems timely. I take pride in not having to involve my executives in any issue; I resolved all of them on my own. Overall I have great stories to tell my employers and friends. Most of the people I know have not been able to do something like this. Student Painters allowed me to take my drive and make into something real. That’s the difference between most students and me.

 

 

I started working for Student Painters in June 2015. I worked as a part-time receptionist and administrative assistant. I am also enrolled at Macomb Community College, working towards a business degree. I have previously worked at an insurance office and then moving to Student Painters allowed me to work with my peers. Helping the younger generation learn how to run a successful business was a wonderful thing to be a part of. Working in this office gave me the opportunity to grow in the company and work with so many great people.  

Amanda Pipitone
2015

 

I joined the Student Painters team in April 2013 and I am so happy that I have gotten this opportunity. I have grown with the company and am excited to have been a part the payroll team. I graduated from Grand Valley State University with a major in Accounting. Student Painters has taught me what needs to happen in order to run a successful business and how to deal with people professionally. These are both great skills to now acquire no matter what field of study I end up choosing. I am grateful to have learned so much with my time here at Student Painters.

Katie Kramer
2013-2015

 

Christian Chasmer

CC Inc.

Alex Cwiakala

CC Inc.

Aly Fantauzzo

March 2011-August 2016

I joined the Student Painters team in March of 2011. I currently attend Oakland University and am studying Pre-Nursing. For the past 5 years, I have met some great people, participated in company events, and learned skills that will allow me to be successful in the future.

Nicole Fantauzzo
Summer 2016

 

I previously worked at Student Painters in 2013 in the recruiting department and then worked as an administrative assistant for the summer season. I am currently a Junior at Western Michigan University. I am excited to always be part of the Student Painters team and take all the new skills I have learned in the summer and use them in the job hunt after graduation.

Ben Walter

 

Student Painters was the defining part of my college career. When I joined, I was not the most organized individual and certainly didn't have many marketable skills. Now, having graduated from Michigan State, I've overseen over a $1,000,000 in business, been responsible for managing over 100 employees throughout college, and I have some of the best stories to tell future recruiters. When it comes down to it, it's not about the painting. It's about literally everything else: the experiences I had, the customers and employees I dealt with, the financial management I learned. Don't do this program if you're not ready to put in honest hard work. But if you are, it has the potential to change your life.

 

 

As a sophomore at Wittenberg University in 2005, I embarked on a journey that has turned into a passionate career path, where I have the opportunity to have a positive impact on the lives of college students.   There is nothing more rewarding than working with an ambitious college student that has big dreams for their own futures.  Each year I am privileged to find a group of hungry young adults that want to take on a challenge, out of the normal way of life, and into something that can inspire new dreams and a new way of making money.  I am excited for my 7th year with the program as we expand our success and the opportunities that come with it.  As much of an opportunity and challenge it is for the student, it is for me and the Team that we have in the Carolinas, in creating more successful Entrepreneurs in this opportunistic world that we live in.  It is always amazing to see what a strong positive mental attitude can accomplish with hard work and dedication to winning.
 

 

Joel Puthoff

 

I began working for Student Painters during the summer of 2015. I graduated from The University of Michigan and have had the opportunity through Student Painters to learn skills that I have never previously been exposed to. I have learned to handle so much responsibility through co-hosting the traditional Student Painters triathlon and am very excited to take these skills and apply them to a potential career.

 

 

Abby Banas
Summer 2015- Summer 2016

 

I started working for Student Painters in June of 2014. I worked as a Marketing Intern and an Administrative Assistant. My freshman year of college I attended Ferris State University on a soccer scholarship. My sophomore year I transferred to Michigan State University where I graduated with a degree in Marketing from the Broad College of Business. The skills and experiences I acquired through Student Painters will be extremely beneficial as I work towards a career in business.

 

 

Lexi McMillan
2014-2016

 

Kayla Faustyn
2013-2016

 

I joined the Student Painters family in February of 2013 during my last year of high school. I decided to continue my journey with the company through all four years of college at Michigan State University, taking on bigger responsibilities and growing as an individual. Student Painters was life-changing to me as a business professional and provided me with relationships that will last me a lifetime. As a Senior Payroll Manager my last two years with the company, I was able to apply what I was learning in the business college with real-world experience in the office. I graduated from the Broad College of Business with a Bachelor’s Degree in General Management in May of 2017 and am currently employed as an Inventory Analyst at Target. My time at Student Painters has given me the confidence in myself and my abilities to succeed in any position in my field for years to come.

 

 

Christian Chasmer

CC Inc.

From a very early age, I knew I wanted to run a company. I never thought I would get the opportunity to do so at the age of 19 though. In 1989 it was unheard of for a company to invest thousands of dollars into a college student to start his/her own business. Who would take a chance like that on a young, inexperienced college student? To say that the Student Painter experience changed my life is an understatement. By the time I was a college senior I had run an organization that generated over a million dollars in sales and had over 100 employees. I went on to become a General Manager, Division Head, and Partner in the parent company that ran Student Painters, eventually opening and leading the New England Division.  By the time I exited the company in 1999, I had helped hundreds of college students experience the world of entrepreneurship, employed thousands of students and was responsible for a multi-million dollar enterprise. I went on to become the founder of two other technology-driven start-ups. From the perspective of hindsight, I can see that my Student Painter experience was even more valuable than I could have ever thought possible. Over the years, working in the start-up world, I have been struck by how transferable my Student Painter management skills have been. Whether one is running a $50,000 summer painting company or a $50 million technology company, the basic fundamental management skills are the same: develop your vision, mission, and core values, recruit a team of people who share your values, develop your business plan and stated goals, cultivate a deliberate company culture, make quality and customer service a central theme, tirelessly measure your progress,  and innovate to overcome challenges and obstacles. It turns out that these fundamental business tenants are reoccurring themes in every successful business. Learning these business fundamentals with the guidance of coaching and real practical experience provided the context for every business experience that came my way. I am forever grateful to have been part of such an outstanding organization as Student Painters. 

Tom Piovoso

Student Health 101

Brianna Dybowski
2015-2016

 

I began working for Student Painters, in August of 2015, as an administrative assistant. I am a sophomore at Michigan State University and plan to major in Clinical Lab Sciences. Student Painters continually enhanced my communication skills each day, along with providing me with wonderful knowledge I can use outside the office. Due to the most helpful office staff, I always enjoyed coming into work. I feel privileged to have been apart of the Student Painters' family and I look forward to continuing to watch the company grow.

 

 

My name is Alex Dalpiaz. I have just completed my first year at Clemson University where I am studying Business Management. Nine months ago I was just your average college student, going to class, putting in late night study sessions, and counting down the days till summer. In early December I was hired by Joel Puthoff to run my own business this summer. It is only now that I truly realize the magnitude of the opportunity I was given and how much I was able to accomplish this summer. I personally hired all my employees, I marketed, estimated, sold and produced a $55,000 company this past summer and earned over $9,000. I was able to learn the inns and out of the “real world” this summer. I dealt with customers, oversaw 6 employees on a daily basis, and set up myself to be successful in the future. I never knew that I could grow so much in one summer. I am confident that this summer prepared me to be successful in the future, by propelling me past any competition in the work field and proving to future employers that I have what it takes to start with nothing and be very successful. There is is no doubt that this internship makes me the most qualified person at whatever career path I choose. Student Painters has been the best thing I could have done for myself. With such great success this summer, I have now been given the opportunity to act as Regional Manager and oversee a $195,000 company next summer.

 

Alex Dalpiaz

 

I am incredibly grateful to be back with YEAA for my fourth year with the company as a Jr GM. I started my first year in college running a $52,000 business after being hired by Joel Puthoff, to whom I am forever grateful to. My second year I oversaw $155,000, and year three a fellow manager and myself oversaw over $225,000 in business. Throughout the past three years, I've grown an immense amount of confidence in my own ability while simultaneously building my skills and experience as a business leader and professional. From start to finish I was given the opportunity to sell, market, manage, grow, and lead my own small business with the support of Young Entrepreneurs and its diverse training and coaching program backing me the whole way. A literal "entrepreneurship without the risk" experience. I've had the pleasure of working with, what I feel, are the boldest and most determined college students and young adults in this country. From my consulting, training, coaching and mentorship of these individuals, I've been able to discover my passions and strengths within the field of business and entrepreneurship. I also built amazing relationships that will last for years to come. The challenges, real-world application and people at YEAA, yet again, made returning an easy decision and I'm excited for the journey ahead!

 

Tom Walker

 

I graduated from Kennesaw State University in May of 2016. Before I graduated, my path was fortunate enough to cross with Young Entrepreneurs/Student Painters. In the very brief span of a class announcement, my interest was piqued. Being an entrepreneur has always been an aspiration of mine. As a senior at KSU, I had no professional experience to boast on my resume (a position I would advise against getting in). This was my first professional internship. While my friends spent the spring semester and summer chasing enjoyment and collecting biweekly paychecks as I had done before, I was learning from the challenges of running a business and managing myself well enough to be successful. I can honestly say that my time with YEAA has been the best investment for my future. It shines like gold on a resume, but the real treasure is the infinite hallway of doors it unlocks within yourself, for yourself. 

 

Throughout this internship, I learned more about business and more about myself than I ever thought was possible in such a short amount of time. The successful mindset was always a theoretical mystery, with new tips and tricks popping up in article after article. My time during the internship showed me firsthand that the key to either success or failure is the 6" in between your ears, and the habits that you build for yourself. Success became tangible. I ran a successful business and made some great new friends in the process (fellow Branch Managers, employees, and executives). Success is almost never an easy route, so for those of you considering this internship...there will be challenging times ahead of you. But without pressure, diamonds would never exist. If the size of your dreams/vision for your future is bigger than the doubt you have about your ability to succeed, then you needn't fear the challenge. Embrace it.

 

After the conclusion of the internship, I gladly accepted a full-time role with Young Entrepreneurs as a Senior Executive.  I know this isn't a lifelong career path for me, but since I learned so much in just the internship/Branch Manager role I couldn't say no to another year. As I write this, I am currently in my second year with YEAA/Student Painters and am loving my experience. I am constantly challenged and kept on my toes. It seems that growth and new experiences are never more than a week away, and as a young professional investing time and energy into myself I couldn't ask for anything more. 

 

Calvin Graves

 

Student Painters has allowed me to me to put more skills to use that I’ve learned about in college but never had the chance to put to use. I also gained a prodigious amount of real-life experience that I never imagined I would go through. The person that I have become through the process of running my own business is a thousand times more confident and mature than before. I truly believe that anyone that successfully completes this internship without giving up can do anything they put their mind to. I am able to tell people that I ran my own business at the age of 22 while producing around $100,000 in business. At the end of the day, the life lessons that I’m taking away from this internship are priceless. 

 

Alexa Moore

 

YEAA is an amazing internship organization that provided me with an unparalleled experience. The opportunity to be in the YEAA internship program and have the ability to work for Student Painters has been one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had. It allowed me to do something I have always wanted to do;  I became an entrepreneur and ran my own business. This internship presented me with many challenges that required me to fully understand what it takes to run a business. Honestly, I learned more through my first year with YEAA than I did during my time as a university student taking classes. There is truly no way to learn at this level in a classroom environment. After interning with YEAA for 3 years and graduating from Clemson University in 2015, I was brought on full time as the General Manager of North and South Carolina. The knowledge, connections, and networks I was able to gain through YEAA and Student Painters is invaluable. I truly believe that the amount I learned and grew from my involvement with this organization has set me far above my peers and because of this, I will never forget this amazing opportunity.

 

Hunter Freeman

 

I began working for Student Painters in May 2017 as an Administrative Assistant.  I am currently a junior at Central Michigan University. My major is Commercial Recreation/Event Management, with a minor in Marketing. Student Painters has allowed me to gain experience interacting with customers, and expand my communication and business skills. Student Painters is a wonderful company to work for, and I am grateful to have had the opportunity.

Kara Vendetelli

Summer 2017

 

I began working for Student Painters in November of 2015. I am currently a sophomore at Oakland University. Student Painters has coached me in dealing with customers and how to be a team player in the office. I am blessed to have worked the past summers because I learned so much in the office. I am excited to take these business and communication skills from such a great company and carry them with me forever to achieve my career goals.

Julia Simonds

2015-2017

 

I started working for Student Painters the summer of 2017. I loved working in the office, this job has taught me so many valuable and desirable skills. I am currently a senior at Central Michigan University. My major is Human Resource Management with a minor in Information Systems. From what I have learned so far I will be able to achieve my goal of becoming successful in any professional business setting. This job has taught me many things such as dealing with different customers, how to use different marketing tools, and how to work within an office staff to achieve an effective and efficient work environment. 

I am attending Oakland University in the fall and will major in psychology. I am grateful for this administrative assistant position at Student Painters and I am excited to grow and see where this position takes me.  All of the office staff has been more than welcoming to me in the new position and I am looking forward to growing as a businesswoman in whatever career I choose to pursue.

Miranda Myny

2017

 

Caroline Schorling

2017

 

I started working for Student Painters in January 2015. I worked as an Administrative Assistant and Personal Assistant for the CEO and office controller. I currently attend Oakland University as a senior working on getting my B.A. in Communication. Every day in the office I learned new skills that have helped broaden my experiences for my future career. Working at Student Painters has improved my communication, organization, and leadership skills. I am very appreciative to have been with such a rapidly growing company and was given the opportunity for continued growth as a college student.

Meghan Coakley

2015-2017

 

I started working at Student Painters in the Recruiting Department August 2013. I enjoyed it so much that I have continued to work here over the past three years. In the office, I worked as a customer service consultant and administrative assistant. I am a Junior at Central Michigan University. I plan to be majoring in Human Resources Management. Student Painters has taught me so many business skills. I have enjoyed this experience with this company and I can’t wait to see what opportunities this experience will bring to me.

Mary-Jo Salerno

2013-2017

 

I began working for Student Painters in May 2017 as an administrative assistant and HR Cloud assistant. I am currently a senior at Central Michigan University. I plan on majoring in Marketing with a Professional Sales concentration. I am excited to see where my position at Student Painters will take me. I have learned lots of communication and business skills. I am glad to have built up my knowledge in business with such a great company and office staff!

Megan Palma

2017

 

I began working for Student Painters in the Recruiting Department in the fall of 2013 and ended working as a Senior Administrative Assistant.  I currently attend Central Michigan University with a major in Interior Design and a minor in Construction management.  Working with Student Painters has taught me many skills that I will be able to use in the real world.  I am excited to see what the future holds for me and am thankful to have had the opportunity to work for such a great company with the best co-workers!

Catie McIntosh

2013-2017

 

Three years ago, running my own business was a distant dream. That dream became reality once I stumbled across a forgotten flier advertising Young Entrepreneurs Across America in my junior year entrepreneurial class at Central Michigan University. In the last 3 years, I have overseen just under $800K in business and been able to change the lives of many students. This program has challenged me in more ways than I imagined possible and continues to do so every year. YEAA is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I encourage anyone with ambition to seriously consider it. 

 

Kami Kimball

I have worked for Student Painters from 2013 until 2018, and in doing so, have been a part of a tremendous company. I graduated from Alma College with a B.A in Psychology in April of 2017. While going to school, I would come back and work in the office on my summer breaks before heading back up to school. Without my experience with Student Painters, I truly don’t know where I would be today. Student Painters has allowed me to grow personally and professionally throughout the past 5 years; gaining skills in customer service/relations, planning, time management, payroll operations, and so much more. This has truly been a great stepping stone in my career path and Student Painters will forever be family to me.I began working for Student Painters in the Recruiting Department in the fall of 2013 and ended working as a Senior Administrative Assistant.  I currently attend Central Michigan University with a major in Interior Design and a minor in Construction management.  Working with Student Painters has taught me many skills that I will be able to use in the real world.  I am excited to see what the future holds for me and am thankful to have had the opportunity to work for such a great company with the best co-workers!

Kolette Sherry

2013-2018