Clay Gingrich '16

  • Small Business Management and Entrepreneurship MajorsClay Gingrich-2016 Student Gallery Winner

    “IUP has given me far greater opportunity than I could have ever imagined. In three short years, I’ve made lifelong friendships, developed essential business skills, and traveled across the globe to complete my studies with international students. Because of IUP, I have a global network of friends and cultural experiences in a foreign environment. IUP gives students the capabilities and resources necessary to unlock their potential; it is our job, as students, to step outside of our comfort zone, capitalize on these opportunities, and make things happen. IUP has taken me this far, imagine where it’ll take you.”

    I am from Altoona, Pa. and am the middle child in a family of five. I grew up with two older brothers and two younger sisters. My grandfather, now deceased, attended IUP long ago to attain his master’s degree. My mother and oldest brother are also IUP alumni.  

    Originally, I was not planning on attending college, although I maintained high academics and a strong level of involvement in extracurricular activities throughout high school. As a senior in high school, I was unsure of myself and my ability to succeed in college; furthermore, I was unsure about the direction my life was headed. My parents convinced me to give college a try for at least one semester, and I selected IUP because it is a well-accredited institution with reasonable class sizes and a location that is not far from my hometown.

    Upon visiting the Indiana campus, I saw the Eberly College of Business as the right fit for me, and a degree in entrepreneurship sparked my interest. Finding a major that suited my creativity and building relationships within Eberly and all across IUP has helped me grow immensely during my three years as a student. The professors, their coursework, and the feedback they provided has allowed me to figure out who I am as a person and of what I am capable. Eberly has proven to be an outstanding business college with helpful and caring professors, as well as a meaningful curriculum designed for students who want to make the most out of their education. 

    The extracurricular activity that I would like to be featured is my study abroad experience to Sydney, Australia. I was one of the first students from IUP to attend the International College of Management in Sydney, and my experiences have been life-changing. The Study Abroad program at IUP has allowed me to travel and finish my degree halfway around the globe. From this, I have gained worldly knowledge that cannot be taught in the classroom. Studying abroad is a truly wonderful opportunity that more students should experience.

    I can happily say that I made the right choices by selecting IUP as my undergraduate university and choosing a major in the business college.