MSIR grad student aspires to be a business owner
Entrepreneur, NASA intern, fitness guru. These are just a few ways to describe Master of Science in Human Resources and Industrial Relations student Clayton Peachey.
After earning an undergraduate degree earlier this year in management with an emphasis in entrepreneurship and continuing on with graduate school at B&E, the Reedsville, Pennsylvania, native recognizes the opportunities afforded to him here at West Virginia University and the College of Business and Economics.
- Why did you study the entrepreneurship area of emphasis within the management major during your undergraduate college career here at B&E?
I did the entrepreneurship area of emphasis because my end goal, what I truly want to do, is eventually have my own business. There’s always been an entrepreneurial side of me, and that was always intriguing. I like leadership roles. Naturally, I'm a leader. I really wanted to pursue a major that would enable me to go after leadership roles and business management, and then eventually get enough experience that I could go out and do my own thing, so that’s where the emphasis in entrepreneurship really came in.
- Describe your role as Media Outreach Intern at NASA IV&V in Fairmont, West Virginia.
People think it’s crazy when they find out I’m a business student and not engineering since I intern at NASA IV&V. One of the main things I do is manage the Space Public Outreach Team or SPOT, which is a team of 50 ambassadors that go out to K-12 schools throughout West Virginia and present on specific areas and do hands-on activities with students. Schools will request a visit. I’ll make sure the ambassadors have everything they need and delegate them to go out. It’s kind of like an HR position and on top of the management of that team.
I also handle PR-related tasks. Out of our facility, I write all news releases and manage all marketing materials such as posters. I also deal with the public a lot because I am writing all the news releases and contacting news agencies and such, and then I manage all those media files.
I am currently finishing up projects for the year and beginning new projects for this school year. I plan to continue my year-round internship with NASA until I graduate in May 2018. I will be taking a short break this coming summer so that I can participate in my General Electric (GE) internship for my grad school requirement. Upon conclusion of my internship with GE, I plan to come back to NASA to continue my internship for the fall and spring semesters. Once I graduate in May, I aspire to be working for GE if they are gracious enough to offer me a full-time position.
- You are in your first year of the MSIR program. What do you like most about it?
I am loving the MSIR program! It has been the greatest experience of my career so far. The program definitely lives up to its reputation as one of top HR programs in the country. My favorite part so far is the networking opportunities. With the program’s high reputation, many companies come in to recruit us for internships and full-time opportunities. There are not many programs where you get to fully immerse yourself into a giant network with a vast number of distinguished companies. Having the opportunity to speak one-on-one with these folks and make a name for yourself is hard to find, and I am definitely blessed to be a part of the MSIR family.
- What do you do as the Career Preparation Graduate Assistant for WVU Career Services?
I work specifically for the Benjamin Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources under Lloyd Ford, where I help teach three classes, revise resumes, administer mock interviews, organize and assist in career fairs and help advise students in their individual careers. It has been a great experience because it is closely related to my HR functions and gives me great real-world experience with resumes and interviewing others. The GA position additionally gives me first-hand interactions with employers that work with the University, which has been a fantastic networking opportunity in itself!
- Describe GE’s HR Leadership Program (HRLP) and what you will be doing with it. How did you get involved?
GE is one of the companies that comes to recruit from the MSIR program. GE has a long running relationship with the program and a high number of their HR employees are WVU alumni. They came in for a whole week of recruiting; giving info sessions, interviews and other great activities to get to know us better. That is how I got involved in GE’s HRLP. It is a two-year development program that will place me in a full-time position. This summer will be the intro to that program where I will go to one of the GE Aviation locations. During the internship, I will have the opportunity to participate in actual HR projects and work with GE’s HR leaders. At the conclusion of the summer, I will go back to school to finish my degree and, after graduation, I would then continue on in the program with three eight-month rotations at different locations around the country.