Extracurriculars lead to plush job for recent grad

By Dan Fischer

A distinguished college career marked by leadership in extracurricular activities paid off for Lynsey Honegger.

After graduating with a degree in finance in Dec. 2005, Honegger went to work as a consultant for Davis & Hosfield LLC, a financial consulting firm based in Chicago. She performs analysis in order to prepare attorneys to testify in litigation trials.

“This job really is a combination of my interest in law and my background in business,” Honegger said.

During her time at the University, Honegger took advantage of a number of opportunities that would make her more appealing to potential employers. She served as secretary and then external vice president of Business Council.

Serving as secretary especially helped Honegger’s interview skills by allowing her to sit in on interviews and emulate candidates’ strong suits while avoiding their mistakes.

“Those leadership positions are very important for students because employers are always looking for the best of the best,” said Lois Meerdink, assistant dean at the office of Business Career Services.

Honegger also interned at Stratum Med in Urbana and AG Edwards and Renaissance Financial in St. Louis.

Brandon Bute, assistant director at the Career Center, notes the importance of internship opportunities such as these.

“It’s a chance for you to explore a particular career field,” Bute said. “It’s a chance for (students) to expand on their body of knowledge.”

Honegger’s academic success allowed her to take part in the James Scholar program. Her hard work paid off at graduation when she was selected for the Senior 100 Honorary, which recognizes 100 seniors for their academic standing, leadership and community involvement.

Honegger believes her education at the University prepared her well for her career.

“A lot of the financial analysis skills I learned in school,” Honegger said. “Definitely my classroom experience helped prepare me to be a good analyst.”

Moving from the college life to the working world meant changes for Honegger. Still, she was ready for them.

“By the end of college, I felt like I was ready to move on,” she said.

She has welcomed some of the changes, particularly making money.

She also enjoys the new schedule.

“In some ways, it’s better than school,” Honegger said. “Once you’re done for the day you’re done.”

She has found that a social life isn’t quite what it was in college – at least during the week.

“You tend to go out less,” Honegger said. “You kind of knock out your weekdays of having fun.”

Social life hasn’t been completely different from college, though. Honegger said,

“Young professionals are still pretty much just as social on the weekends as they are in college,” she said.

Yet despite having a job, Honegger also wants to return to the academic world and plans to take graduate courses in May.

“I enjoy being in the working world, but I can also see now that I kind of want to go back to the school environment,” she said. “I think you always want to keep things changing in your life.”