University of Arkansas

Walton College

The Sam M. Walton College of Business

Intern Spotlight: Lindsey Kusman

Lindsey Kusman

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Episode Transcript

00:00 Lindsey Kusman: I definitely wanted to go in and get my Green Belt at least just get that experience for process improvement, because that's actually what I'm very passionate about in supply chain like you know.

00:11 Brian Fugate: Yeah.

00:11 Lindsey Kusman: And so, actually this week, I've been going through my Green Belt course and learning so much and just can't wait to apply it to a process improvement course next semester, and just overall, life in general.


00:40 Brian Fugate: We're in Dallas at BoomerJacks nearby the Cowboy Stadium with Lindsey Kusman. Lindsey is a supply chain analyst intern this summer at Lockheed Martin. She's a Supply Chain major graduating May 2020, and we're here to hear a little bit about what you're doing this summer, so can you tell us a little bit about that?

01:01 Lindsey Kusman: Yeah, absolutely. So right now, I am basically tracking parts for missiles and fire control. And so I'm tracking about 80 parts. And so, essentially, my day goes by, I come into the office, and overall, just start checking the projected POs and open PRs and essentially just going into those parts and trying to see where they're at. If they were rejected, what we can do to make sure they're passed and just overall, set them up for the most success and get them to our manufacturers on time.

01:36 Brian Fugate: That sounds interesting. So with your intern, was there... When you stepped in the door first day, I mean, what happened? Did they have onboarding? Do you have a... Is there a program in place?

01:45 Lindsey Kusman: Yeah. So I was one of the last groups to start our onboarding process. So we went through orientation, and then that was just a full-day. And then after that, we went to just going to the office every day and going through trainings for a couple of days. And then after that, it was full-fledged on into meetings and getting to know everything we can about Lockheed, and what we're supposed to be doing, our responsibilities, and overall, just about the company.

02:14 Brian Fugate: So, Lindsey, I've heard you tell me a little bit about this before, and you always are really excited about what you're working on, what makes coming into Lockheed every day of the summer exciting and fun for you?

02:27 Lindsey Kusman: For sure, the people. I love working with everybody there. They're all just so genuine and willing to help and wanting me to learn and just furthering my success and just, overall, developing me as not only an intern, but possibly an employee there someday.

02:45 Brian Fugate: Okay, that sounds fantastic. So coming in this summer, what kind of goals did you have for yourself to accomplish?

02:53 Lindsey Kusman: Yeah. So I definitely wanted to go in and get my Green Belt at least just got that experience for process improvement, because that's actually what I'm very passionate about in supply chain like you know. And so, actually this week, I've been going through my Green Belt course and learning so much and just can't wait to apply it to a process improvement course next semester, and just overall, life in general, and just growing as a person and getting to know Lockheed better just in case I do wanna end up going there someday. I'm kinda leaving doors open.

03:27 Brian Fugate: So it's interesting. So the last four years, you've mostly been in classes and class schedule, and I know you work with me a lot in a different type of schedule. But when you come into this to Lockheed in a full-time kinda internship, how is that different? How has that affected you?

03:45 Lindsey Kusman: So I wake up a lot earlier than I guess I thought I would. I wake up every day close between 4:00 and 4:30, and I'll get in... [chuckle] I'll get into the office between 6:30, no later than 7:00, but normally closer to 6:00 even just to get as much work as I can done possible, because we do have a flex schedule, which I think is just so great for Lockheed, so we can work 10-11 hours a day, and then that way until we get our 40 hours during the week, and then we can go home. But since we're interns, we don't get overtime, and so basically, I try to get an early start and an early finish, but this week, I've been going in at 6:00 just so I can get as much done before my training. And then so once I get there, I listen to a podcast on my way to the car, and I used to just jam out to music and now, I'm just focused on this podcast called MFCEO Project, and it's been phenomenal. It's about business, owning your own business, becoming an entrepreneur, but also just developing those skills that you need in business just to communicate with people and grow stronger as a person, and overall, just growing. And so... And you know, I just love to learn. I want it...

05:00 Brian Fugate: Yep. Yeah, you do, you do.

05:00 Lindsey Kusman: I want to learn as much as I can. [chuckle] And so I just wanna be a sponge, just absorb everything I can, and so that's what I listen to in the car, and it just gets me pumped up. It's like I wanna just go in like punch a brick wall or something I run into it, just because I'm just that excited to go to work. I don't normally go through my emails first thing during the day, but I go to my email immediately, and then automatically, I just go to the next cubicle and see Maria who's been helping me so much, because there's probably an issue that I have to figure out and solve, and she's normally the first person that I go to. So it's like skip the email, go to her get help, and then go to meetings all the time.

05:37 Brian Fugate: Meetings? Yeah?

05:37 Lindsey Kusman: Yes. Meetings.

05:38 Brian Fugate: How have those been?

05:39 Lindsey Kusman: Oh, my goodness. It's funny you bring that up, Dr. Fugate, because there was... During my first... I wanna say it was my first week or two weeks that I was at Lockheed, and I looked at my schedule, and there was two meetings back-to-back. It was like 1:30 and then 2:00 o'clock. And so, I just briefly glanced over that. I thought it was at 1 o'clock. So I show up to this meeting room thinking I'm supposed to be there. And then I get there, and it's all these engineers. And so they're starting this conference call and prior to the meeting, I talked to this... The man who ran the meeting Matt, and he said, "Yeah, happy you're here. You're from global supply chain, whatever you're learning." And I told him like, "Yeah, I guess I'm trying to learn something like be part of the business, because these are all engineers, so I don't know what I'm doing here." And so sitting there, looking at all the charts and everything and trying to follow along, and then the meeting ends, and Matt and I keep talking after, and he was like, "Yeah, if you need anything, let me know." And then.

06:43 Lindsey Kusman: My team walks in into the same room, because it was like a back-to-back meeting in the same room, and they were like, "What meeting were you just in?" And I said, "Oh, the PO meeting, the purchase order meeting." They were like, "This is the PO meeting." So, I realized I was in the wrong meeting the entire time.

07:01 Brian Fugate: It's funny, 'cause you were there and they didn't even know it. So, probably that you were in supply chain, so that's pretty neat. Maybe that's a new strategy we can start using.

07:09 Lindsey Kusman: I don't know, get the inside scoop. [chuckle] o.

07:09 Brian Fugate: Yeah, yeah. So let's take a step back. So, you're... And talking about your supply chain program...

07:16 Lindsey Kusman: Yes.

07:17 Brian Fugate: You tell us some of the courses you've enjoyed, and why?

07:21 Lindsey Kusman: Initially, whenever I went into the University of Arkansas, I wanted to be a Finance major, and I had that for the first two years. And then, spring semester of my sophomore year, I had Dr. Thomas's supply chain intro course, and it just completely changed my perspective on everything. It really opened my eyes to a world that I had already been involved in my entire life. From my family having their own transportation company, to my sister's Supply Chain major, just hearing all about it. And, overall, just a world that I was already exposed to, and then it completely changing, just because of one person. And it literally made the whole difference in the world, and I'm just so grateful for Dr. Thomas, just in general.

08:10 Brian Fugate: Yeah, she's fantastic, and doing a lot of important work. I know you're heavily involved in the clubs, and WISE, and the Women In Supply Excellence Club, and...

08:19 Lindsey Kusman: Yes.

08:20 Brian Fugate: And I appreciate that. Now, thinking about that, and your experience, and kind of now having been through this internship, and still in it, what advice would you give your earlier self, freshman, sophomore?

08:35 Lindsey Kusman: That's a very tough question, because there's quite a few things I would say that I wish I knew, going into my freshman year. First thing, would say, time management, because that's one of the hardest skills to have. But if you master it, it's one of the easiest things to keep yourself grounded, and make sure you get everything done on time. And second one would I be open yourself up to new experiences. Like, in WISE, I'm in a finance role. And, of course, I don't really have a finance background, I just know a few things about finance and I just wanted to learn more. So, now I'm like VP finance, and it's just completely changed everything. So I get to see things from another perspective, I've gotten involved and I have a leadership role, so that's something else I could put on my resume.

09:20 Lindsey Kusman: And, the last thing, I would say is, it takes a lot to try to not get a job or an internship at the University of Arkansas, just because Walton gives you so many opportunities for success. Through VMock, like having your resume available, graded and judged, just so it gets better. Having all the professors just be so open and honest, and wanting to help you succeed. That's our ultimate goal at Walton, is student success. And so, I think all the teachers, or at least most of them, do embody that student success, and try their hardest to make sure that that happens. And they just... The Career Center and teachers literally offering to go through your resume and get you connected. It's nearly impossible to graduate without a job, or at least have an internship.

10:14 Brian Fugate: That's really, really good advice, especially so early on in your career. A lot of wisdom there, and then I hope that students take note of that.

10:23 Lindsey Kusman: I hope so, too. It helps.

10:24 Brian Fugate: Yeah, yah. So Lindsey, thank you for your time, and coming down here to this place to interview, so thank you.

10:32 Lindsey Kusman: Absolutely. No problem.