As a WSU freshman, Taylor Lange (’17 Mktg.) found herself at a crossroads with her choice of major. Growing up in Colfax, the farmer’s daughter and fourth generation Coug had deep roots in the agricultural sector and an interest in food science, but she didn’t envision herself as a researcher. Social and outgoing, Lange joined Kappa Kappa Gamma and began to dream about a career in business that would capitalize on her communication and networking skills. Still unsure, she set up an informational meeting with a business advisor in the Carson Center for Student Success.
It was a step that transformed Lange’s education and her future career plans.
“I can’t thank my Carson Center advisor Tom Sanford enough for the information and direction that helped me confirm my dream to work in business,” says Lange. “From Dr. Chuck Munson, who helped me get through statistics, to Dr. Jeff Joireman, who showed me how you can be creative in marketing, the Carson College made me feel I was in the right school,” she says.
ONE DREAM LEADS TO OTHERS
Lange chose to major in marketing and minor in economics, a combination that would best prepare her to become a business professional. The Carson Center introduced her to studying abroad and developed a course plan that would keep her on track to graduate in four years. Lange spent four months at the Florence University of the Arts in Italy studying international marketing.
“When I was in a central market in downtown Italy, I heard ‘Go Cougs!’” she says. “The worldwide Coug community is the best thing about WSU.”
When Lange returned to Pullman for her senior year, a larger dream began to take shape in her mind: becoming the brand marketing manager of a Fortune 500 company within the next 10 years and simultaneously supporting WSU.
“In the long-term, I want to be able to hire Cougs whose success stories will help put WSU on the map as one of the nation’s top 25 business schools,” she says.
COUG COMMUNITY PROVIDES SUPPORT
To meet her goals, Lange looked for a job that would provide a strong human resources foundation. Attracted to Amazon’s fast pace and culture, she applied for several positions but was unsuccessful. Discouraged, she turned to resources within the Coug community. She spoke with Google for Entrepreneurs marketer Danny Navarro (’10 Mgmt. & Ops.) who told her not to give up. While attending the Holiday Bowl, she networked with Brad Fisher (’79 Bus. Admin.), who gave her “an amazing referral” to Amazon’s human resources department. Milt Lang (’98, ’08 Educ.) connected her with his daughter
Maliza, an Amazon employee, who offered guidance. Lange also participated in the Carson Center’s mock interview, career, and résumé workshops.
The preparation paid off. In July, Lange landed a job in Amazon’s talent and acquisition program, learning HR processes that will help her achieve the dreams of her future.