Jaspreet Singh, CAPS 2012 graduate and UMKC freshman has received a summer internship with United Airlines. He will be a social media intern working in the marketing department at their headquarters in Chicago.
Singh credits his landing this position, that is usually given to college juniors or seniors, to CAPS. The interview process included an online application, telephone interview and finally a face-to-face interview. The questions were mainly behavioral and Jaspreet said CAPS prepared him well. He used the STAR method that he learned in Global Business; S-Situation, T-Task, A-Action and R-Results.
When asked by the interviewer, “tell me about a time you managed a project.” Singh responded with the business plans he had written at CAPS and how he led meetings and gave presentations as part of his CAPS projects.
The entire interview process took about a month. Singh will enjoy all the benefits one receives working for an airline, including free flights. And as at CAPS, he will be assigned mentors at United. Also as part of his internship he will have the opportunity to travel throughout the different departments at United to learn the scopes of their different departments including; operations, finance and human resources.
Singh’s passion has always has been to work for an airline and through his CAPS experiences he now is living his dream. He will be blogging throughout his summer internship and you can follow him at jaspreetsingh.co
Ali Hancock, Robert Smith and Carolyn Wallace
Ali Hancock, CAPS Teacher Education alumni and sophomore at K-State, works for Arcademic Skill Builders. Arcademics is a website for elementary aged students and has games to help them learn different things from various subject areas such as math and geography. She helps write scripts with Carolyn Wallace (another CAPS Teacher Education alumni) for videos that give students a brief overview/explanation of the problem or problems they missed while playing one of the games.
“We try to include rhymes into the videos as a trick to help kids remember, which is a great tool to use while teaching,” said Hancock.
They also record the audio for the videos and then send on to Robert Smith, CAPS Filmmaking alumni and KU sophomore, where he takes care of the rest.
Smith’s job for Arcademics is to use Adobe After Effects to create and animate videos to go along with the voice recordings that Ali and Carolyn send to him. They’ve covered subjects in math (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division), as well as fractions, ratios, counting money, and state capitals.
“This has helped me improve my skills with the programs I use, both creating graphics and animating everything together. Also, having a job in my area of study/interest gives me experience that will carry over to future positions and will hopefully open more doors,” said Smith.
“Working with Arcademics has helped me so much since I’m an elementary education major. This experience makes me think about the best way to teach a concept, or even offer a few different ways to understand it,” said Hancock.
Nathan Martin is a 2012 BVHS graduate who was enrolled in the CAPS Global Business course. Martin attends Seattle Pacific University where he is majoring in Accounting and Entrepreneurship.
“At CAPS I saw fellow classmates being successful entrepreneurs and it was a wake-up call that I didn’t have to wait to start my career,” said Martin.
“The Kauffman FastTrac® New Venture™ for Entrepreneurship certification showed me that you can’t rely on what you get from books and classes, you need to make a commitment and have initiative to learn on your own,” said Martin.
Martin’s latest venture is a website called “Pro-ing Up.” It’s a website geared to young adults to help them create their own website.
“I was interested in web design, but there are so many confusing resources out there. I thought if I could design one unified place with instructions it would be a huge help to students designing their own site for resumes and college admissions – this is the trend of the future,” said Martin. “It’s critical to have an online presence at an earlier age.”
This site is for the person not interested in web development. The goal is to help the user by making the process of designing their own site easier and more accessible. The service will be free. Martin’s goal is to launch the website this summer.
Bridget Cotter is a 2012 CAPS graduate who studied four semesters in Teacher Education. During her CAPS experience, she spent a great deal of time in a variety of elementary classrooms working on different projects and lesson plans. For example, in one rotation she worked at LKE with third grade reading groups where she interacted with the students and designed her own activities.
Also during her time at CAPS she developed some online games for learning. For example, in 4th grade one standard is students should be able to identify all 50 states on a blank map. Cotter took this idea and made an online game.
“Ms. Fry did so much with technology in her classroom, much more than we are using in my college classes so far,” said Cotter.
“I think the biggest edge CAPS gave me was the ability to present and do public speaking. Before CAPS, I was scared to death of public speaking and now I can really take command of the room when I’m presenting,” said Cotter.
Cotter is attending Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas where she is majoring in Elementary and Special Education and wants to teach kindergarten.
Zach Block, CAPS graduate, received a job offer and shared his experience:
I reached out to one of the labs on campus here at the University of Illinois, in which they are conducting research on musculoskeletal biomechanics and rehabilitation engineering. Yesterday I met with one of the lab’s graduate students and was later extended an offer to be an undergraduate research assistant helping him study the effect of patients with Parkinson’s disease and their walking ability.
What I really want to emphasize here though is the benefits and importance of the CAPS program in helping me get this position. The graduate student I interviewed with was very impressed by the fact that I had my own company and patent, something that wouldn’t have come about if not for the CAPS program. When he asked about my programming experience I told him I knew programs such as MasterCAM, EdgeCAM, G code, etc., all of which were taught to me in the CIM class. He was again impressed by the fact that I had experience with computerized mills, robotic arms, and even standard woodshop machines. Further, the graduate student was impressed by the fact that I knew AutoCAD, Autodesk Revit, and Inventor, all of which I learned during my time in the CAPS program.
Walking out of the interview it hit me how influential the CAPS program was for me, and can be for current students. I knew in high school how revolutionary the CAPS program was, but I did not realize the full effect the program could have on my future. I am thoroughly grateful for all my experiences with the CAPS program and know that they will continue to help me as I proceed through college, graduate school, and into the real world.
Kate Strombom, CAPS alumni, is in front of a poster, which she presented at this year’s Society for Neuroscience conference in New Orleans on Monday, October 15th. The study she and her partner presented looked at forepaw motor behavior in Squirrel monkeys. They were instrumental in developing the data set. They worked with over 2200 videos showing a monkeys pellet grasping activity.
“This is really quite remarkable for a student at this level,” said Dr. Troy Schmanke, Senior Scientist at the University of Kansas Medical Center.
This summer BVNW and CAPS graduate, Bradley Monter, received an internship at Olsson Associates based in Overland Park, Kansas. Monter completed two semesters of Civil Engineering and Architecture with an independent study when he began his relationship with Olsson. Olsson has been a CAPS business partner and provided CAPS students with mentors and guest speakers. Olsson Associates offers comprehensive engineering and design solutions for public and private infrastructure projects.
Monter had a full-time paid internship this summer working with the Land Development team. He was involved in a variety of projects including landscaping plans, graphics and site development.
“His extensive knowledge of Auto Cad software and communication skills made him a great candidate for this position,” said John Brown, Monter’s supervisor at Olsson.
“CAPS really helped me with my written and verbal communication skills – they improved immensely and people noticed. It positively influenced my public speaking, one-on-one interactions and emails,” said Monter.
And the future looks bright for Monter who is attending Johnson County Community College and has the opportunity to continue his internship at Olsson while he attends college.
Grant DeFonso, a 2012 graduate from the CAPS Global Business strand, participated in a summer internship at Freedom Bank. Freedom Bank is one of CAPS inaugural business partners and President and CEO Kurt Knudson collaborates as a guest speaker and mentor for the Global Business course.
DeFonso was involved in a variety of jobs during his internship including inputting data, working at the concierge desk, conducting transactions and wire transfers.
“He hit the ground running with initiative, making valuable contributions to the projects he worked on,” said Nate Lien, CFO and CDO for Freedom Bank.
DeFonso also assisted with regulatory research, investment portfolio work and helping electronically file notarized documents.
“This internship was a very valuable experience and I really appreciate Freedom Bank’s unconventional approach. It’s all about the customer and many customers don’t have to go past the front desk to receive the service they need,” said DeFonso.
DeFonso is a freshman at K-State majoring in International Economics.
Zack Brewster and Conner Tumbleson
2011 CAPS Alumni Zack Brewster and Conner Tumbleson are interns this summer at Mr. Goodcents Franchise Systems, Inc. in DeSoto, KS. Tumbleson is a North graduate and is studying Computer Science at the University of Arkansas. Tumbleson is building a job seeker data base to connect real companies with jobs to folks seeking employment called the Jobs Incubator. He works in the School of Franchising, another division of the Goodcents Franchise Systems.
Brewster graduated from BVW and is studying Marketing at the University of Kansas. He is assisting with graphic and web design for several of the Goodcents companies.
“I had sent out many resumes and completed several job applications with no responses. I found this incredible opportunity at Goodcents through CAPS,” said Brewster.
And the good news is that Brewster and Tumbleson may both have the opportunity to continue their work for Goodcents during the school year.
“We look for employees who can jump in immediately and ‘get their hands dirty.’ Both these young men have initiative and we hope to keep them on in some capacity once they return to school,” said Robert O’Toole, Creative Director for Goodcents.
“Mr. Goodcents Franchise Systems, Inc. has been an Investor, Business Partner and Internship provider for the CAPS program. We look forward to a long and beneficial partnership for our company and the students in the CAPS program,” said Melissa Bisogno, Goodcents Program Manager.
May 11, 2012
Shelby Bottoms graduated from CAPS in 2011 and currently attends Georgia Tech with a major in Aerospace Engineering. She recently returned to CAPS to pick up her Engineering Design notebook. She developed the notebook while working on her Decibel Debilitator project in CAPS Engineering Design and Development course. The Decibel Debilitator is a set of ear plugs that takes in noise and then suppresses it to 80 decibels, making noise less harmful to your ears.
“I thought I wanted to go into the field of engineering and my CAPS course confirmed my interest,” said Bottoms.
Bottoms found the design process very helpful not only in her Engineering class but now she wants to take this process and use it in her college courses.
Zach Block and Lisa Vance
March 23, 2012
Zach Block and Lisa Vance are Blue Valley graduates who teamed up together on an innovative idea in their CAPS Engineering Design and Development class when they were seniors. As they went through the engineering design process they identified the problem of people in the world who do not have clean drinking water.
To find a solution to this problem they did extensive research and then designed and tested a prototype of a drinking straw they called the Maji Straw. The Maji straw is a cylinder made with eco-friendly and inexpensive materials that filters water. Block and Vance have a provisional patent on their invention.
When asked about the name of their invention, Vance shared this story.
“The site we chose to develop this product for is Bisil, Kenya. They speak Swahili there and one of our mentors, David Neely, gave us a few words in Swahili for inspiration. One of the words was maji which means water. We decided to put a little twist on the word making it our own, so we pronounce the j as an h. Kind of like ma-he,” said Vance
This past summer the Maji straw went to Kenya with Neeley from Affecting Change International. Vance and Block also wanted to thank and recognize their other mentor, Dale Duncan from Helix Architecture. The next step for these two innovators is to file for a non-provisional patent.
“Our ultimate goal is for the straw to be used to help people in under-developed countries have easy access to clean drinking water,” said Vance.
Business Partner Spotlight
Wayne Floyd, Sprint
February 14, 2012
Last week, Mr. Wayne Floyd, Senior Manager of Technology Strategy for Sprint presented to morning and afternoon CAPS students. His presentation focused on "Innovating with Emerging Technologies: Where are the opportunities to innovate over the next 5 to 10 years?"
He presented emerging technology information about select industries, including; Retail Trade, Transportation & Warehousing, Banking/Finance, Technology Information, Advertising, Education, Arts & Entertainment and Medicine.
He discussed some of the major unsolved problems in these industries that are coming up in the next 5-10 years, which provide opportunities for innovation. In conclusion he noted the job growth in the next 10 years would include:
- Jobs that integrate the physical and virtual worlds
- Tech – centric
- Bioengineering, biostatistics
- Alternative fuels
- Carbon offsets/displacement
- Social activism
- Movement of food/goods/crops/products/services/ideas across geographical business and organizational boundaries
Mr. Floyd is a CAPS mentor and business partner who continues to meet with students providing thought-provoking trends and information in a variety of fields.
Congratulations to Tim Schaefer, morning Bioscience Research student, who won the KC Brain Bee sponsored by the KC chapter of the Society of Neuroscience at KU Med Center last weekend. CAPS Bioscience student Vivek Menon, last year’s Brain Bee Champion, was in attendance to inform close to 40 participants about the national bee. We had seven participants including Kelsey Demel, Ilham Boda, Holly Reynolds, Forrest Moret, Allen Zhu, Austin Fuhr, and Tim Schaefer, who all successfully navigated the first round of questions.
In the final round, CAPS Bioscience students represented three of the four participants (the last three students previously listed), and was ultimately won by junior Bioscience Research student Tim Schaefer! Tim will continue to study hard in preparation for his participation in the National Brain Bee held at the University of Maryland in early April. You can read about Tim’s accomplishments at http://www.kansascity.com/2012/01/28/3397626/brain-bee-tests-students-gray.html
Maggie Spangler is a CAPS alum and a freshman at K-State.
“Instead of sleeping in like most college students are doing during winter break, she has been coming to CAPS to do more bioscience! Sure many college students come to say ‘hi’ to their old instructors, but how many give up an entire week to come do the same sort of work they were doing in high school?” said Joe Whalen, CAPS Bioscience Instructor.
Spangler is majoring in Biological Systems Engineering, a brand new department at K-State
“It is a combination of biology and engineering and my concentration is in the environmental sector,” said Spangler. “This sector designs engineering system based on the systems in nature. I also have an interest in alternative fuel.”
Spangler wanted to give back because she appreciates the professional edge she got at CAPS.
“Most of the lab work we did in Bioscience at CAPS was at a college level and other high school students don’t have this opportunity,” said Spangler.
Business Partner Spotlight
Samantha Weiner Hammontree, President of Sterling, Inc. known in the industry as "One Great Source" for holiday decorations and accessories, has created a unique opportunity for a team of CAPS Global Business students to benefit the CAPS program. Hammontree’s family foundation, Lawrence and Joan Weiner Foundation made a $25,000 donation to CAPS in connection with a fundraising event. Sam Kolkhorst, Tanner Holmes, Carlee Ray and Brianna Savage from the Global Business strand are the team that are creating, developing and hosting this CAPS charity event. One of the guidelines for the event is that they must raise $10,000 to receive the matching gift.
The team has been meeting during the fall semester and has decided to host an event celebrating innovation and CAPS on Thursday, April 26 at the Sprint Winter Gardens. There will be more information available about this event and sponsorship opportunities in the next few weeks.
Hammontree is an alumni and resident of Blue Valley and is very impressed by the opportunities the CAPS program offers junior and senior high school students. She is interested in developing young leaders and entrepreneurs and thought this event would be a meaningful opportunity to give students a leadership role and donate to the program.
“My first job out of school was in event planning and marketing and having students plan an event from beginning to end is like running a business that includes budgeting, planning and marketing,” said Hammontree. “My hope is that this year’s CAPS fundraising event is the inaugural year and that this event becomes an annual community event.”
Nazanin Yeganeh Kazemi
With an interest in molecular biology, Nazanin Yeganeh Kazemi completed the Machinery of Life and Rhythm of Life classes in the Bioscience strand at CAPS in her junior year. During her senior year she enrolled in the CAPS Bioscience Independent Research Study and did research on Epigenetics for Dr. Michael Freitag in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, a researcher and her mentor at Oregon State.
Kazemi is now a freshman at UMKC in their pre-med track with a dual major in biology and chemistry. At UMKC, the dean of the School of Medicine knows Kazemi and her research, and the Associate Professor and Director of Curriculum for the School of Biological Sciences knows Kazemi by her first name even though she is not enrolled in any of the professor’s classes.
When asked, “How has CAPS helped you?” Kazemi had this to say, “Well, I know the difference between gel electrophoresis and PAGE electrophoresis, I know how to kill conidia in an autoclave, I know how to extract, quantify, and analyze DNA and RNA, I know the difference between a protease and nuclease, and I can tell you all the silencing proteins (sirtuins, acetylaces, methyltransferases, just to name a few) that work in harmony to maintain the integrity of most multicellular eukaryotes.”
“Because of CAPS, my freshman year will continue to be a review of the not so basic basics of biology and chemistry. Because of CAPS, I will love my genetics class, and because of CAPS, undergraduate research and getting published is no myth to me,” said Kazemi.
Kazemi also shared that she took a practice MCAT last month and got a 23 (without having taken Organic Chemistry, Biochemistry or Physics) while her peers got 6’s and 10’s. Most of the biology was material she learned at CAPS, not from AP Biology,
Business Partner Spotlight
Systems Material Handling
Jeff Geir is a 2011 Blue Valley graduate who was a summer intern at Systems Material Handling (SMH) in Olathe. Jeff participated in the Engineering strand at CAPS completing the Independent study class with instructor David Clark.
“This is a real-world job for Jeff that he had to interview for. He was a good fit with his engineering background,” said Tim Smith, Materials Group Director, for SMH and CAPS business partner and mentor.
“We are the largest fork lift company in the world. Jeff’s job is cross-checking our stock here and on our computers in Belgian. We have more than 5 million parts and deal with 100,000 SKUs. The work Jeff is doing today will have an effect on our industry forever,” said Smith.
Because of the success of Geir’s internship, Systems Material Handling plans to increase their internship opportunities.