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Alumni Perspective: Brock & Claire (Hoehamer) Shaffer

Name: Brock & Claire (Hoehamer) Shaffer

Graduation Year: 2012

Major: Business Management, Journalism with a Marketing Concentration

Current Position: Financial Advisor with Northwestern Mutual, Business Development Manager with A Beautiful Mess

City and State: Springfield, MO

Tell us about your careers and what you do now.

[one-half-first]Brock: I am a financial advisor with Northwestern Mutual. I help clients save for their children’s education, navigate retirement planning and investing as well as make sure my clients have the right amount of life insurance, disability insurance, and long-term care insurance. In addition, I work with high-income clients in the areas of estate planning and tax efficient savings strategies. [/one-half-first]
[one-half] Claire: I manage the sponsorship program for A Beautiful Mess, a blog and lifestyle company based here in Springfield. I am in charge of our paid partnerships and work with the brands that want to be featured on our site or through our social channels.[/one-half]

What is your favorite memory from Evangel?

[one-half-first]Brock: My favorite memory from Evangel is meeting my beautiful wife, Claire.[/one-half-first]
[one-half]Claire: The best part of Evangel is the relationships you make while you’re there. I met my husband Brock and made friendships that are still strong and so important to me today. [/one-half]

How did Evangel help you identify/develop your calling?

[one-half-first]Brock: The Business Department gave me the tools and resources to figure out what I wanted to do when I graduated. Being a part of different groups and organizations gave me the experience and knowledge to feel confident in what I was choosing as a career path.[/one-half-first]
[one-half]Claire: Both the Communications and Business Departments encouraged me to try out different opportunities to see what areas I found the most interesting. That was really important while I was figuring out what type of career I wanted to pursue.[/one-half]

How did your experience at Evangel prepare you for life after graduation?

[one-half-first]Brock: Evangel helped give me scenarios to experience what life in the real world is like through different projects and leadership positions within business organizations. I am still using the advice and relationships I gained through my time at Evangel. [/one-half-first]
[one-half]Claire: I would say the relationships made during my time at Evangel really helped prepare me to enter the professional world. The professors took an active interest in helping get me connected with people in the industries I was interested in. That’s so rare and valuable to have![/one-half]

What advice would you give a current student preparing for the workforce?

[one-half-first]Brock: Take advice from professors whose classes you are in. Spend time with them and ask their advice on different situations you are facing. They want to help. Also, take advantage of different internship opportunities available. They are a great way to experience life in the real world. [/one-half-first]
[one-half]Claire: Try out a lot of different things at Evangel. The student organizations are often a great way to see what type of work and projects you may actually enjoy. And, ask your professors for help connecting with people in the field you think you’re interested in. It can be a great experience even just to talk with someone who is working in an area you think you might like.[/one-half]

What would you look for if you were in a position to hire new graduates from Evangel?

[one-half-first]Brock: Someone who is an achiever, has demonstrated some level of being in a peer group and having success. Someone who is coachable, willing to take advice and is hungry to learn. Also, someone who is competitive and wants to create a career for themselves by design and not by default. [/one-half-first]
[one-half]Claire: I would look for a graduate who is proactive in pursuing the opportunity, who is excited for the chance to join my team and who has a basic understanding of what our company does.[/one-half]