UW-Stout News Story

Co-op award-winner: Work experience ‘was phenomenal’

April 12, 2012

When he was a junior at University of Wisconsin-Stout, Justin Lilley spent eight months working full time as a packaging engineer at Bemis Manufacturing of Sheboygan Falls.

“It was phenomenal,” Lilley said. “I was doing what a real packaging engineer does on the job every day.”

Lilley, from Wisconsin Rapids, landed the job in 2011 through UW-Stout’s Cooperative Education program. Now a senior, Lilley was one of 20 program participants honored Wednesday on campus with the Cooperative Education Meritorious Award.

A record total of 876 UW-Stout students had co-op work experiences last year through Career Services, which works with 500 employers. Students earn a wage — an average of $12.37 last year — receive a grade and get academic credit for their efforts.

Getting a chance to work in his field prior to graduation helped reaffirm Lilley’s career choice and gave him confidence he was on the right track. “I applied what I learned in my classes. Stout definitely gets you ready for the position,” he said. “The experience accelerated my drive to be a packaging engineer.”

Another award-winner, Roseanne Meier of Edgar, worked 12 weeks last year in communications at Metropolitan Council, a government agency that works with seven counties in the Twin Cities area. She wrote news releases and performed other duties involving internal and external communications.

“I learned how to be a professional, the day-to-day aspect of working with people. I applied everything I’ve learned in a professional setting,” she said.

Meier will graduate in May in professional communication and emerging media, with a focus on technical communication. She already has landed a full-time job as a technical writer with Unisys of Roseville, Minn.

Since the UW-Stout Cooperative Education program began in 1982, more than 15,000 students have participated.

For more information, contact Career Services, 715-232-1601 or http://www.uwstout.edu/careers.

UW-Stout Cooperative Education Meritorious Awards

The winners, their majors, employers and UW-Stout advisers are:

• Laura Abel, Marshall, Minn., retail merchandising and management, J.C. Penney; Kathleen Cochran

• David Ashleson, Downing, engineering technology, Harley-Davidson; John Petro

• Sara Beran, Athens, business administration, Church Mutual Insurance; Bill Kryshak

• Nicole Burkel, Pulaski, retail merchandising and management, Target, Kathleen Cochran

• Camila Checa, Ecuador, hotel, restaurant and tourism management, Grand Hotel Marriott Resort Golf Club & Spa; Edward Harris

• Abby Evers, Kimberly, packaging, Nosco; Robert Meisner

• Leah Hauck, Lyndon Station, hotel, restaurant and tourism management, Whistling Swan Inn & Restaurant; Edward Harris

• Kerstin Johnson, Ripon, professional communication and emerging media, Alliance Laundry Systems; Matthew Livesey

• Ashish Juwa, Nepal, information and communication technologies, American Family Insurance; Steve Schlough

• Justin Lilley, Wisconsin Rapids, packaging, Bemis Manufacturing; Robert Meisner

• Roseanne Meier, Edgar, professional communication and emerging media, Metropolitan Council; Matthew Livesey

• Brittney Norgren, Eden Prairie, business administration, University Directories; Bill Kryshak

• Kyle Pieters, Burlington, construction, Miron Construction; Tim Becker

• Anish Pokhrel, Nepal, manufacturing engineering, Hutchinson Technology; Derek Wissmiller

• Tim Reed, Balsam Lake, manufacturing engineering, Hoffman Enclosures; Derek Wissmiller

• Julie Scarpace, West Bend, vocational rehabilitation, Walt Disney World; Dave Delambo

• Caleb Sherman, Appleton, construction, J.F. Ahern; Tim Becker

• Miranda Wellnitz, Arpin, business administration, Kohler Engines; Bill Kryshak

• Tiffany Willits, St. Paul, professional communication and emerging media, Lillie Suburban Newspapers; Matthew Livesey

• Emily Willman, Rosemount, Minn., apparel design and development, Kohl’s Department Stores; Gindy Neidermyer

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