Travelers EDGE Internship Program Celebration

Seven Inver Hills students recognized as EDGE Scholars

On Friday afternoon, April 18, 2017, Matt Kruger, director of TRIO Student Support Services, and Dionna Jones, director of the Center for Experiential Learning, hosted the Travelers EDGE Internship Program Celebration. The event took place in the Black Box Theatre in the Fine Arts building on the Inver Grove Heights campus of Inver Hills Community College. Speakers at the event included Hamid Kazeroony, Business faculty, and Thomas Van Wylen, Traveler’s EDGE graduate intern.

A number of interns gave presentations reflecting on their experiences. Two internship supervisors were present to provide comments and insights, Dale Dufault, vice president of finance at CLUES, and Michelle Theissen, volunteer development manager at The Arc Greater Twin Cities. Michelle was recognized with the Superstar Supervisor Award during the event. She supervised Inver intern, Luis Quintanilla; Dale supervised Inver intern, Rolando Rincon.

More about Travelers EDGE

Travelers EDGE (Empowering Dreams for Graduation and Employment) is the signature education program of Travelers, one of the largest property casualty companies in the U.S. Travelers EDGE provides a holistic approach to education through partnerships with colleges, universities and community-based programs to increase the pipeline of underrepresented students who complete bachelor’s degrees and are prepared for a career at Travelers or within the Insurance and Financial Services Industry (IFS).

Students participating in Travelers EDGE benefit from:

  • Financial support
  • Career and business exploration
  • Internships and job shadowing
  • Professional development workshops

Travelers EDGE Scholar Application

Application Deadline: Friday, April 28, 2017

Inver Hills EDGE Scholar interns

EDGE Scholar spotlights…

Winfrida Nyange

Winnie Nyange

Winnie Nyange

Winfrida “Winnie” Nyange, 42, is originally from Dar es Salaam, the largest city (population nearly 4.4 million) in the East African country of Tanzania. Winnie is a graduate of Zanaki Girls High School in Dar es Salaam. She moved to Minnesota in 2011 with her husband, Alain, who is from the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

Winnie NyangeWinnie is double-majoring at Inver Hills, earning an Associate of Arts (A.A.) and Associate of Science (A.S.) in Accounting. She plans to transfer to either Augsburg College or Metropolitan State University to study accounting. Her career goals are centered on becoming a certified public accountant (CPA). She likes that Inver has numerous opportunities to be engaged on campus. She participates in DECA and Phi Beta Kappa as well as TRIO Student Support Services.

As an EDGE Scholar at Inver Hills, she received $2,000 per year. She interned at the city of Inver Grove Heights, starting in January 2017 and continuing until May. Her scholarship will continue when she transfers to a four-year school to earn her bachelor’s degree.

Winnie resides in Eagan, Minnesota, with Alain and their two children, Paschal, 12, and Carolyn, 5. In her free time, she enjoys nature and traveling. She would love to travel all over the world.

Winnie Q & A

What do you like best about Inver Hills?
The campus location is convenient, quiet and safe. The college also provides equal opportunities to benefit from important educational and career resources.

Why did you choose your career path?
I previously worked in accounting and I like working with numbers.

What has been your toughest challenge in life?
Quitting my full-time job and becoming a full-time student.

What do you most want to accomplish in life?
Getting my CPA.

Three words that describe you as a college student:
FOCUSED. DETERMINED. RISK-TAKER.

How did TRIO SSS enhance your college experience?
TRIO supported my educational, professional and personal achievements in many ways. I found Travelers EDGE through TRIO.

What TRIO SSS activity or event did you enjoy the most?
All the cultural activities.

What will you miss most about TRIO SSS?
Friendly advisors—they manage to make us become a family.

What would you tell a student who’s thinking about participating in TRIO SSS?
TRIO is an amazing program because it helped me to easily achieve my personal and educational goals.

Rolando Rincon

Rolando Rincon

Rolando Rincon

Rolando Rincon, 19, calls South St. Paul his hometown. Rolando graduated from South St. Paul Secondary in 2015. He’s earning his Associate of Arts (A.A.) at Inver Hills and has a strong interest in accounting.

Rolando RinconAfter graduating from Inver, Rolando is transferring to Metropolitan State University to earn a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Accounting. He would like to work as an auditor or accountant for the first few years of his career and then go back to school to earn his master’s degree and become a certified public accountant (CPA).

As an EDGE Scholar at Inver Hills, Rolando received $2,000 per year. He interned at CLUES, starting in January 2017 and lasting until April. His scholarship will continue when he transfers to a four-year school to earn his bachelor’s degree. Rolando learned about Travelers EDGE as a student in TRIO Student Support Services.

Rolando resides in Inver Grove Heights. His mother is Norma Sosa, his father, Jaime Rincon. His sister, Valeria Rincon, is married to Carlos Hernandez. They have a daughter, Rolando’s niece, Adallyn Rincon-Hernandez. Rolando loves to play soccer, his favorite sport since he was in middle school. He also enjoys being with his friends walking around the city, watching sports and spending the summer together.

Rolando Q & A

What do you like best about Inver Hills?
All the possible opportunities there are. I came to Inver with no plan and no major. I was unsure if I could continue my education. But within a year, I found my major and knew how I could earn my four-year degree.

Why did you choose your career path?
I have always loved numbers and have been great at math. So, when I looked into business and saw what accounting is, I knew that I could do my best and strive well in that area.

What has been your toughest challenge in life?
When my family and I found out I could not attend a university my first few years. That was in August, right as I was supposed to leave for school. I was in a tough spot and had to make a decision then or miss a semester of school. I decided to attend Inver Hills at that point.

What do you most want to accomplish in life?
I want to prove to my parents that all these years of school will have been worth it and take my mother on the vacation she has always wanted.

Three words that describe you as a college student:
HARD-WORKING. EFFICIENT. INTELLIGENT.

How did TRIO SSS enhance your college experience?
I met with the TRIO advisors so easily and talked to them so much about what my future education would be like. They helped me choose my major and also introduced me to the Travelers EDGE program.

What TRIO SSS activity or event did you enjoy the most?
End of Semester Party is the best just because it’s nice to relax and not be worried about finals at all times.

What will you miss most about TRIO SSS?
I will miss the advisors and mentors the most. Whenever I walk into the TRIO office, they always say hello and you can have nice casual conversations with them. If I’m
having a long day, going to the TRIO office is the best way to make it better because of atmosphere.

What would you tell a student who’s thinking about participating in TRIO SSS?
They should do it 100 percent. TRIO offers so much help such as helpful advisors, campus visits, events and more. Eligible students who do not know much about college should join so that they can get a better understanding of whats to come.

To learn more about Travelers EDGE and TRIO Student Support Services at Inver Hills, contact:

Matt Kruger
TRIO Student Support Services Director
Travelers EDGE Director
651-450-3701

To learn more about the Center for Experiential Learning at Inver Hills, contact:

Dionna Jones
Center for Experiential and Work-Based Learning Director
651-450-3295

Michelle Thiessen, Luis Quintanilla, Rolando Rincon, Dale Dufault

Michelle Thiessen, Luis Quintanilla, Rolando Rincon, Dale Dufault

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