Undergraduates: Soar with Flyer Enterprises
How would you like to be CEO of a million-dollar business before you even graduate? (Can we say #resumegoals??) You can have that opportunity at the University of Dayton. UD is home to one of the largest student-run corporations in the nation, Flyer Enterprises, and fall is the time to get involved!
Griffin Quinn is the current Chief Marketing Officer of Flyer Enterprises and a third-year undergraduate student. We recently chatted with him about his experiences with this remarkable student enterprise.
So tell me a little bit about Flyer Enterprises.
Flyer Enterprises (FE) is one of the largest student-run organizations in the nation. Undergraduate students in any major can become part of FE – from working in one of the 9 corporate divisions to holding a management or executive position. Flyer Enterprises became a corporation in 2001, and now employs about 180 students each year and generates more than $1M in annual revenue.
What is the corporate structure of Flyer Enterprises?
FE is 100% student run. (We do have around 30 people on the board of directors, consisting of a few alumni along with faculty advisors.) Our executive team has five Chief Officers. We also have a Presidential level with four Presidents. Within each division they have their own management, which opens up a lot of opportunities for FE employees to gain managerial experience.
What are some unique experiences you’ve had with Flyer Enterprises?
Flyer Enterprises is very different because it is entirely student-run. My roommate is also in Flyer Enterprises, and we’ve met so many friends through the company. We’ll have various activities throughout the year, like dodgeball tournaments, or we celebrate Thanksgiving together.
We do career workshops, like resume building. When hiring, like for management positions, it’s always students interviewing students, which has definitely helped me [when I’m on] the other side of the table.
The executive team communicates a lot with other student businesses from other universities. Last fall, the executive team went to Georgetown University and got to tour their facilities. They’re the #1 student-run enterprise.
How does involvement in Flyer Enterprises help students succeed after graduation?
Actually, just speaking from this past executive team, there’s about five members that are graduating, one of which is going into general consulting for business; one is working for LinkedIn, which is really cool; and one is working for Cardinal Health.
We have a lot of successful FE alumni. Tony Blankenmeyer – he’s on our board – and only 10 years into his career he already has a few start-ups and a ton of experience. He offers a great amount of advice because he knows what it’s like to be in our shoes and he knows what [skills] we’ll need past graduation.
[FE helps] develop a lot more of the soft skills, like interpersonal relationships, communication, managing style, and leadership. So that’s really unique. You don’t learn [things like] accounting very much unless you’re the financial division, but no matter what you do, you learn the little things like how to dress for an interview, how to introduce yourself, how to work with someone when something’s not going right.
What’s the most impactful thing you’ve learned from Flyer Enterprises?
Learning how to think outside what’s done before. We only have 1 year in our positions so it is important that we make the most of the opportunity and think innovatively. And the soft skills – a lot of time management too, because there’ll be some weeks where it doesn’t seem like it’s going to be busy, and then one of the divisions has an ice machine break and the world’s falling apart.
All of this sounds amazing! How can undergraduate students, including international students, get involved in Flyer Enterprises?
We typically hire right at the start of the school year – you can submit an application on Handshake [UD’s job posting site]. Once you get on campus, doors are open at just about every division. Usually in September, a lot of people join, as well as more hiring throughout the year.
Hiring is open to all majors. A lot of people don’t realize Flyer Enterprises is open to more than just business school students. We want to involve as many students on campus as possible.
We’re looking to implement something new because we have so many applicants in the fall and we can’t give everyone an interview. We want to do a meet and greet session where everyone that’s interested in applying can meet people from every division, and learn more about each of the divisions and what to expect. That would be a great opportunity for current or incoming international students to stop by to get more information.
If this sounds cool and exciting to you, please email the UDayton Global Student Services team and we can connect you with the right people!