BEYOND THE CLASSROOM: College of Business student gains knowledge while helping community

Aug 13, 2013 | Business, General News

Louisiana Tech faculty members encourage students to seek and obtain internships in order to help them prepare for their career path after college. Many students take advantage of the various internship opportunities. This is the second part of a six-part series highlighting Louisiana Tech students and their internship experiences.
For West Monroe native Daniel Dupuy, interning with the Ruston-Lincoln Convention and Visitors Bureau and Chamber of Commerce was more than just a job.
It was an opportunity.
Dupuy, a senior business management and entrepreneurship major, helped with one of Ruston’s biggest events, the Peach Festival, this summer and also was instrumental in organizing hospitality training and a conversion study to help the parish.
“It’s been a great process and I’ve learned a lot,” Dupuy said. “They’ve been great here to allow me big responsibilities and put together my own projects. I’ve enjoyed that, and it’s been great to use what I know and what I’ve learned through the College of Business to put that in a working environment.”
Besides promoting the Peach Festival at the beginning of the summer, Dupuy put together hospitality training for Ruston hotels.
“That’s been a good project,” he said. “I got to do a little mystery shopping with the hotels and see what information they have and how knowledgeable they are about different things in our community.
“I’m in the process right now of putting information together and will present it to the board of directors for the Convention and Visitors Bureau in early August. That’ll be cool to relay information to different people in the community. Then we’ll invite hotel managers in and let them ask questions, work with them, and explain how they can benefit from this information.”
His second summer project with his internship involved determining why people visit the parish, what they do and where they spend their money.
“Most people come to Ruston to visit friends and relatives,” Dupuy said. “The second highest percentage was sporting events. It’s really neat because we’re figuring out why people come to this area and how to draw them here.”
Dr. Larry Jarrell, internship director with the College of Business, said local internships are becoming popular because students can do it while attending class on campus.
“We have several students who have interned internationally, but most try to intern in this general area,” Jarrell said. “It’s a good experience for our students. We encourage them to do it because many employers hire out of internship pools.”
Dupuy said internships offer students an opportunity to expand on what they love to do.
“For me, I enjoy being active and working with other people,” he said. “Be some place where you can be involved in the community and at a nice work environment. It makes work fun. My internship is unpaid, but I’ve enjoyed my time here. As long as you find what you’re interested in and get involved, that’s what makes a difference.”
One of his passions involves helping his community – something his internship has allowed him to do.
“Ruston’s my second home,” Dupuy said. “Being involved at organizations at Louisiana Tech – it enables you to put yourself in a community, and you realize what a great community we have. There are great opportunities for jobs when you graduate, and Ruston’s a great place to be after graduation.”