Catchin’ Up with … Tim Higgins
Finding your passion is what four years of college is for, and SU did a great job helping me to do that, but the most important thing I learned in school is that it’s all up to you. You can have all of the opportunities in the world in front of you, but you have to take the initiative to take advantage of them and see them through. For as long as I can remember, my passion in life has come down to two main themes: 1) helping people, and 2) figuring out how things work and how to make them work better. When I stepped foot on campus, I wasn’t quite sure what career path I would take to let me pursue my passions while enjoying what I would be doing. I just knew that whatever I ended up doing I wanted to make an impact – the Perdue School of Business made that possible.
Once I made the decision to pursue a degree in business, I just had to decide on an academic direction. During my freshman year, one of my mentors on campus helped me narrow down the options. They described business like a human body complete with a skeleton, nervous system, muscles, veins, etc. That metaphor really helped me to decide on majoring in what I would describe as the spine and the central nervous system of any business: accounting and enterprise information systems. Even today, I am still exploring my career options. The academic background that the Perdue School provided me with opened me up to the possibilities a career in business could bring my way.
In addition to my academic endeavors, the Perdue School opened up a world of opportunities in leadership and experiential learning, but the message was always clear – if you want to do it, you’ve got to make it happen. Over the course of my four years, I had the opportunity to serve as a Student Business Leader, the president of the Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization, a vice president of Beta Alpha Psi and the student president of Beta Gamma Sigma. These organizations all put me in the room with local and regional business leaders and taught me the value of networking and taking the initiative. That networking got me jobs at the Business, Economic and Community Outreach Network (BEACON) at SU and with Sperry Van Ness Miller Commercial Real Estate during my sophomore and junior years. During my time at BEACON and SVN – Miller I learned about business in a much more concrete, hands-on way – applying the theory from the classroom to real world business issues.
The capstone of my four years at SU was participating in the John Molson Undergraduate Case Competition as a delegate from the Perdue School. This process started in the fall of my senior year with a class designed to train and test the abilities of a select group of students and culminated in four of us being selected to go to Montreal, Canada, to compete in the competition. Although, we did not win the competition, the process opened my eyes to the world of consulting and led me to take my current position.
All of the opportunities that the Perdue School afforded me brought me to where I am today, working as a consultant in the technology and management consulting practice at RSM US, LLP. I specialize in assisting our clients with designing, implementing, and supporting enterprise resource planning systems and efficient business processes in manufacturing and distribution environments. This job allows me to fulfill both of my passions while traveling the country and continuing to grow as a professional.
My experiences at the Perdue School helped me to find a career where I can pursue my passions, and if it was not for the people that I met there – peers, professors and business professionals – I would have never known what possibilities were available to me. Take advantage of every conversation and every opportunity because you never know what might be behind that next door.