Eric Seeley is from Manassas, Virginia and is a Business Management major from the Pamplin College of Business with a double concentration in Management Consulting & Analytics (MCA) and a second concentration in Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technology (EIT). On Friday, May 15, Eric will be graduating with distinction, Magna Cum Laude. He will be starting his career in the late summer with RSM in their McLean, Virginia Office as a Risk Consulting Associate.

We recently asked Eric to share his journey and experiences as Virginia Tech student.

Why did you choose Virginia Tech?  When and why did you choose MGT?

I come from a long line of UVA alumni and I thought that is where I was going to go growing up but when I visited Virginia Tech, I knew immediately that was where I wanted to go. It felt like home and for the past four years it has been exactly that. As for the decision to go with Management, I knew I wanted to go into business and one day be my own boss plus the other majors didn’t really interest me.

Were there any specific classes that you remember as validating your major choice to date?  
There were many classes along the way that validated my choice, but I can say two of my favorite classes were Management Consulting and Developing Entrepreneurial Ventures.

Has there been a faculty member or staff member within Pamplin and/or the MGT department that has served as a mentor or source of inspiration for you during your journey? 
Absolutely. Ron Poff, my professor for the Developing Entrepreneurial Ventures class has been hands down the best professor I have ever had. A lot of professors say they care about their students and while for some that may be true, many times that is an empty statement. Professor Poff actually cares about each and every one of his students and it is visible to every person in the room. I was excited to go to his class every week. He even pushed me and a few classmates to enter into the Apex Entrepreneurship Kickstarter challenge where my group and I won seed money for our venture. It was a great learning experience and without him I never would have done it. Lastly, even after I no longer had his class we have kept in touch and he makes it known that I can stop by and talk whenever or ask for help any time. 

What advice would you provide to an incoming Pamplin freshman? 

To an incoming freshman, I would say work hard but don’t stress too much. There is an unlimited amount of resources at your disposal and Pamplin is full of people just like you so never be afraid to ask for help. Do your best and have fun.

Name some of the internships, if any, that you had during your Virginia Tech and/or Pamplin journey.

Well, I worked for my dad during the summers the first two years of my college career where I learned how to run an office by myself. It was a very valuable experience. Then the summer of my Junior year I had an internship with a company called TEKsystems where I was a technical recruiter. I learned the value of people skills and what it means to be sales oriented.

What/who is your inspiration for leadership?  

Without a doubt my Dad. He came from absolutely nothing. He used to joke when I was younger that homeless people were better off than he and his family were because at least they didn’t owe anybody anything. Now, through hard work he has managed to become the President of a business and given myself and my sister a very nice life thus far.

If you could give a testimonial about Pamplin and/or the Management Department, curriculum - what would you say?  
It’s tough but worth every late night and every all-nighter. The education you receive will carry you long after you’ve graduated.

Please provide a brief summary of your summer internship - who, when, how did you approach the process?

I went to Business Horizons and I was the first one there and the last one to leave. Be personable and try not to be too nervous. At the end of the day they are people too and you have to be able to showcase who you are but just act like you are having a conversation.

During my internship I had a meeting every morning with my boss where we went over what was expected of me for the day. Then about an hour later the entire floor has a group meeting which served as a status update for the office. Then I went about my day and did what was required of me. Also, I was the first one in the office every day and most of the time the last one to leave. Be sure to never slack off and always make a good impression.

What are your plans after your senior year? 

After Senior Year I have a full-time job lined up with a company called RSM. Due to the Covid my start date has been pushed back until the fall but come September I will be working full time in the McLean Office as a Risk Consulting Associate.

Any other words of wisdom or insights that you can provide us

The only thing I have to say is don’t take everything so serious. Yes, school is very important, but these four years absolutely FLY by, trust me. So, my final piece of advice is to make sure you enjoy every second for as long as you can.

Beginning of College VS End of College