College degree pays off early for WSU student
May 8, 2012 11:00 AM | Print

Benjamin Michael Jung
Benjamin Michael Jung
Early in life Benjamin Michael Jung enjoyed playing with toys that showed his creative side. In high school he performed well in math and worked for his father's bicycle store in Wichita.

When it came time for Jung to think hard about his future, he realized that he had developed a set of skills that could take him to his next step.

After attending Butler Community College, Jung transferred to Wichita State University, graduating in December 2011. He earned a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering and graduated magna cum laude.

"It really just fell into place," he said.

Jung was aware of WSU's strong engineering program.

"Many engineering graduates from Wichita State go to work for different companies here in town," he said. "Obviously, that's great for our local economy."

Benefits of networking

Finding employment after college can be challenging and intimidating. Fortunately it turned out well for Jung. Before he finished school, he had lined up an engineering job at Koch Industries.

Jung's new job began in December 2011 at Koch-Glitsch LP, a Koch Chemical Technology Group LLC (KCTG) company of Koch Industries Inc.

"It was actually through a networking opportunity," said Jung of this job.

A good word was carried out for him and he didn't hear back for several months. Then, Jung said he received a call requesting him to come in and interview for the position.

"Koch-Glitsch produces new and replacement parts for refineries and chemical plants all over the world," he said.

Jung has chosen a career he enjoys. He said Koch-Glitsch has proven to be an excellent match for him.

WSU's College of Engineering prepared Jung for his employment by providing experience-based education and research for use in industries such as Koch-Glitsch.

Jung had two internship positions through cooperative education. His first was the National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) during the two semesters of spring and summer 2011, followed by Hawker Beechcraft from July-December 2011.

"Jung was an exceptional student and showed great potential," said Suja Mathew, coordinator, College of Engineering, Cooperative Education and Work-Based Learning. "It's easy to tell a student who is ready for the industry. They are typically proactive, detail oriented and dedicated individuals. Ben exhibited all these attributes paired with excellent communication skills. It's no surprise he was sought after by every employer he sent applications to."

Jung's passion for mechanical engineering means a great deal to him.

"It's creative," said Jung. "You're allowed to use your imagination toward new designs, inventions and new ways of doing things.

"My position at Koch-Glitsch is ideal; I am directly applying the knowledge from my degree every day."

Jung added that his teachers played a huge role in his success. He really enjoyed hearing from his professors about what engineering jobs are like, in addition to general changes affiliated with the industry.

Jung mentioned some strong advice for incoming freshmen engineers.

"I would encourage students to not get discouraged, and really study hard," said Jung.

"Look for a challenge; look for a job where you get to apply what you learned and you will be a lot happier."

Jung is also an avid pilot and received his license when he was 17.

Created on May 8, 2012 11:00 AM; Last modified on May 8, 2012 11:02 AM
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