Trine graduates connect through fellowship

February 14, 2017

As a descriptive word, "academics" doesn't do much in the way of expressing what learning at Trine is really like. Here, knowledge is lived. Our students and faculty put their knowledge to work in ways that solve real problems facing real communities throughout Indiana, across the region, and around the world. At Trine you'll see that learning is never some static thing. It's what challenges and inspires us all at once.

By Annabelle Elder
Communications ’17

FORT WAYNE — Though Trey Calver and Nic Hostetler never met during their time at Trine University, the 2016 graduates are now roommates and looking toward successful careers thanks to a fellowship program sponsored by Greater Fort Wayne Inc.

Calver, who graduated with a degree in finance, now operates his own company, Job Scholar, which began as a class project at Trine. Hostetler, who earned a degree in informatics and a minor in business administration, works as a software developer for Franklin Electric.

The pair connected through the GFW Fellows program. Launched in 2015, the program seeks to match investors with talented college students for project-based internships that may lead to full-time jobs. Calver and Hostetler each completed 12-week internships, and participated in social activities and service projects during the summer, and attended personal development workshops during the school year. Hostetler’s job at Franklin Electric came as a result of his GFW internship.

“The biggest perk of being a fellow is gaining connections within Fort Wayne,” Hostetler said. “Through the fellows you really get to know a lot of business leaders through networking. Without the fellowship, I would not have had the opportunity to work for such a great company right out of college.”

 “The GFW Fellows program impacted me in so many ways it would be tedious to list them all,” Calver said. “The work experience was phenomenal, the professional development was very beneficial, and the people I met and friendships built with the other Fellows were unforgettable.”

Calver and Hostetler both agreed that Trine University played a large role in preparing them for the future.

            “Material covered in class, student organizations, internships, individual projects – all of these improved my overall ability to succeed in the workforce.  My professors and mentors were there to help me every step of the way,” Calver said.

 “The classes I took as a student put me strides ahead of co-workers who have graduated from other universities and I could not be more thankful. This has already opened several doors for me at Franklin Electric to take on bigger projects,” Hostetler said.

Hostetler said Tyler Benner 2008 BSBA, his boss at Trine, was a key mentor for him at Trine, while Calver credited business faculty members Marek Kolar, Toby Swick and Kelly Trusty.

 “Tyler influenced me in many ways,” said Hostetler. “One of the biggest things I learned from him is that in order to be successful you have to take risks. Risks can be uncomfortable, stressful and a bit scary, but the reward in the end is worth it.”

 “Dr. Kolar as my advisor and professor helped me understand the area of business I was interested in (financial markets) continually over four years. Swick is someone I can always go to regardless of the situation.  His continued support and guidance with my Innovation One Challenge idea my sophomore year ultimately led to my passion for entrepreneurship,” Calver said. “Dr. Trusty is simply a great person. She is one of the most driven people I have ever met.”

They also said being members of different campus organizations helped them learn skills and knowledge to take with them following graduation.

“I worked for admissions as a student worker and was a tour guide for Trine. Through being a tour guide, I gained a ton of leadership skills. It really helped me build my character and personality,” said Hostetler.

  Hostetler and Calver offered some words of wisdom to current students at Trine.

“Build your network and don’t give up.  You need to have access to the right people to help build your venture. There will always be obstacles; you need to adapt and take chances,” said Calver.

 “My advice is to enjoy Trine. I had lunch once with Richard Wilhelm, who is the executive vice president at Booz Allen and a national security expert.  After our lunch, he told me to never settle and know my worth,” said Hostetler.

“Those words have stuck with me and I encourage all of the graduates of Trine to know their value after graduating from a private institution with such wonderful faculty. Do not settle for the first opportunity that comes your way. Step out of your comfort zone and you will be amazed at the doors that will open for you!”

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