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Kirsten Graves

Meet kirsten graves 

major: finance

Why did you choose Krannert?

I always wanted to attend a large university, so attending Purdue was not a surprise for me because I had various family members who attended and felt the school has a well-known reputation. I started my Purdue career as an interior design major, but quickly realized my interests were strongly business related. After my first semester, I transferred into Krannert because I felt the rigor of this school would generate many opportunities for me during and after college. I was attracted to the emphasis on numbers and data in Krannert that you do not always see in other business programs.

What is your favorite Purdue memory so far?

My favorite Purdue memory so far is studying abroad in Dublin, Ireland, the summer after my sophomore year. I took two classes for four weeks and met many other individuals in Krannert. It was so cool to experience a new culture and I loved seeing different parts of Ireland and also went to Amsterdam for a weekend!

Why did you decide to join Women in Business (WIB)?

I joined because I wanted to be a part of an organization that helped me develop both personally and professionally. I knew Women in Business would give me various opportunities to do so, and I liked that it was a network of women who support and empower one another.

What has been the biggest benefit of being part of that group?

The biggest benefit of being a part of this organization is the confidence I have developed in professional settings. Before becoming a member of WIB, I had little experience interacting with recruiters, participating in interviews, or simply speaking about myself in a professional manner. WIB has given me a great outlet to practice and develop these skills before I am in the workplace.

Describe the major events WIB does every year.

Each year, WIB hosts the Monarch Leadership Conference, which features various keynote speakers, breakout sessions, company panels, a networking session, and sponsors. Last year, I had the opportunity to plan the 11th Annual Monarch Leadership Conference, which featured Purdue alum Chelsea Hayes, CEO of The Coaching Factory. Additionally, the Executive Board for WIB attends the Harvard Intercollegiate Women in Business Conference each year and the Big 10 Women in Business Conference. Attending these conferences gives us exposure to various speakers and peers from other universities to add to our network.

What has WIB added to your college experience both socially and from a professional development standpoint?

This club has tremendously influenced my college experience both socially and professionally. Socially, I have met many other women who have similar interests and goals to my own, which has helped us connect with each other. Furthermore, I have some friends I met in WIB who have graduated that I keep in touch with. Professionally, WIB has strongly developed my leadership skills and taught me how to manage and work with a team in different situations. I know these experiences have and will continue to prepare me for the start of my post-grad career.

Why would you recommend WIB to other students?

I would recommend this organization to other students because it is an effective way to grow in various ways. The organizational structure allows each member to carry responsibility, creating more of a welcoming environment because each member feels accountability. We have our president or co-presidents who manage an executive board of 11 vice presidents. Each vice president oversees a different branch in the organization, which is comprised of directors and associates. Members have many opportunities to get the most out of this organization.

What other extra-curricular activities do you participate in? What have you learned from those experiences?

I have also participated in Purdue Student Government as an Election Committee member my junior year. This gave me additional experience collaborating with others and gave me the opportunity to learn more about what is involved in that process

❝ WIB has strongly developed my leadership skills and taught me how to manage and work with a team in different situations. I know these experiences have and will continue to prepare me for the start of my post-grad career. 

Other than clubs, what has made a major difference to you when it comes to your college experience?

I recently took the course MGMT490 (Change Management) taught by Professor Ben Dunford. This course discusses how to make change, personally and in an organization. I had never consciously thought about the process by which we make changes in our lives, but I found this course to be extremely applicable to everyday life and to working on a team. I would encourage other people to look into this course because I think it is very beneficial in preparing for your career. 

Tell us about your internship(s), and/or tell us about what you will be doing after graduation.

This past summer, I worked for SC Johnson as a corporate finance intern. I had two primary projects over the course of the internship. My primary project was to analyze two key competitors in Global Home Cleaning and formulate a strategy to defend SC Johnson’s market share. I also built reports that matched business entity to the coordinating product using Tableau. After graduation, I will join GE Healthcare as part of the Financial Management Program in January of 2022.


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