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Class of 2014 Profile: Matt Jakubowski Turns Internship into Career

04.28.2014

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HIGH POINT, N.C., April 28, 2014 – Internships are sure-fire way to boost résumés, build connections, expand networks, and set potential employees apart from the competition. New Jersey native Matt Jakubowski, a well-decorated senior political science major, landed a job with Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. (Mt. Laurel, N.J.) to begin just nine days after graduation in May – largely due to an internship he pursued last summer.

“My internship with Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. was an amazing experience that I was lucky to receive through the power of networking,” he says. Arthur J. Gallagher (AJG) is one of the world’s largest insurance brokerage and risk management services firms, employing more than 16,000 people worldwide. During his internship, Jakubowski had the opportunity to assist with joint insurance funds, work alongside AJG Vice President Scott Tennant and shadow producers in other cities to better understand how to gain new business and best serve current clients.

It was during his time at HPU that Jakubowski learned the value of a holistic, engaging education. Four years of holding various high-level leadership positions with his fraternity Kappa Sigma, the HPU College Republicans and the Class of 2014 underscores his personal commitment to community involvement. Jakubowski has also been a long-time University Ambassador, Resident Assistant and Career Peer Ambassador, further showcasing a dedication to serving others.

Jakubowski knows his time at HPU has well-prepared him for a successful future: “The environment on this campus encourages students to come out of their shells, get involved and grow.  Students willing to make the extra effort and take advantage of the opportunities here will succeed.”

Outside the HPU community, Jakubowski has earned an impressive amount of experience working with public affairs. He has completed internships working with N.J. Congressman Jon Runyan and assisted with Republican Richard Hudson’s successful campaign for congressional election in 2012.

With this generation of graduates entering a highly competitive job market, simply having a college degree isn’t everything. Jakubowski’s multitude of internships undoubtedly helped him land a job at AJG. “Young people need to work hard to diversify their resumes and stand out to potential employers.  Internships are a great way to do so,” says the N.J. native.

Every student at HPU is encouraged to pursue the Career and Internship Services’ four-year action plan, which helps position students for a successful transition from the classroom to a work environment.

“Matt is a great example of a student who started early and was proactive about reaching out to our department,” says Interim Director of Career and Internship Services, Bridget Holcombe. “When he came in for his first meeting with one of our career advisors in December of his freshman year at HPU, he was already beginning the process of formulating a career plan.  Matt also took the initiative to attend a career fair as a first semester sophomore, which is an excellent way to build networking skills and to practice speaking to prospective employers about oneself.”

Jakubowski is eager to begin working Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. “The insurance industry is one that offers upward mobility to young people, and I am excited to be joining one of the most recognizable and well-respected brokers in the industry. “

His final weeks as a student will be bittersweet, he adds. “After graduating, I will miss the culture of High Point University the most.  This campus is full of amazing people who truly make those around them better.  Our HPU Family is something impossible to imitate, but it does inspire me to take this culture outside of our gates. I am confident the lessons and values HPU has provided me will enhance my professional career.”

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