NMSU College of Business lays foundation for student success

June 4, 2008 by Margaret Kovar NMSU News Center

The investment company Vanguard likes to recruit at New Mexico State University because of the level of student preparation for professional positions, said Mike Grose, a retail services manager and recruiter for the company.

Two such students are Lila Semrau and Joseph Salcido, both formerly of Roswell, N.M. While attending NMSU, Semrau was a general business major, and graduated in 2006. Salcido was a finance major, and also graduated in 2006.

Semrau and Salcido now work in Scottsdale, Ariz., for Vanguard. Both said they were attracted to the company because it is located close to home, yet affords different opportunities than those available in New Mexico.

Semrau is a Client Relationship Associate. She works in a call center helping investors with anything they need, from setting an on-line password to discussing investments. She is the first NMSU student to be accepted into the Accelerated Client Engagement (ACE) program at Vanguard. The goal of the program is to prepare participants for leadership roles and more analytical positions within the company.

“NMSU helped to prepare me for life after school by offering a diverse curriculum within the College of Business. I also received strong encouragement from professors in the college,” Semrau said.

Salcido has worked for Vanguard for two years. He began as a Client Relationship Associate, and then moved into brokerage services. He recently was promoted to a position in the trading group.

“The professors at NMSU were always very helpful, friendly and concerned with preparing students for what can be expected in the work force. The university developed who I am now and helped lay the foundation for success in my career,” Salcido said.

Vanguard recruits many NMSU graduates, and more than 20 currently work there.

“Successful students are well-prepared for the interview process. They know about the company and dress appropriately. Many of the NMSU graduates who work at Vanguard said the on-campus Career Services helped them prepare for the job search and interview process,” Grose said.

According to Lizbeth Ellis, academic department head of finance, many big companies come to NMSU for job recruitment.

“Big corporations like Intel and GM come to NMSU because we attract a lot of in-state students who reflect the diversity found in our state. Many of the companies also are looking for students who are fluent in Spanish, which they can find at NMSU, too,” Ellis said.

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