Peter B.

//Peter B.

Like many Michigan natives, Peter wanted to try something new after graduating high school. He picked Butler University in Indianapolis and left for the big city. Butler was full of opportunities for Peter where he worked throughout school and upon graduation, landed a job working for a trucking company. Peter found the experience enjoyable but knew it wasn’t the career for him and quickly found himself outside the “Butler Bubble.”

Not only did he see little growth potential in his position, but many of the little things didn’t line up either. “It was an awakening when I graduated,” said Peter. “You have to drive at least 25 minutes to get anywhere and in Indy, people are more on their own, they’re not community driven like they are here.” For Peter, it was hard to find social networks with people his own age and weekends were just a break in the workweek, not something to look forward to.

Both personally and professionally, Peter wasn’t hitting his stride in Indianapolis. He visited his family in West Michigan for the Thanksgiving holiday and while at home, his father insisted on attending an event he heard about on the news, ReThink West Michigan, Hello West Michigan’s annual event on Thanksgiving Eve. “Attending a career fair on my vacation was not on my to-do list,” said Peter. “I’ve been to other career fairs and they are not fun. ReThink was much different; the companies there made me feel like they wanted me, they tried to impress me versus me trying to impress them.”

While attending ReThink West Michigan, Peter visited with several participating companies, including Meijer. He had interned at Meijer during a summer in college but never considered them as an employer post-graduation. “It’s one of those things where you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone,” said Peter. “Meijer is a fantastic employer, but I didn’t know that until I worked somewhere else and realized the grass wasn’t greener on the other side.”

By January, Peter was hired at Meijer and training in their Merchandise Associate training program with 14 other young professionals. In just a few short weeks of being back in West Michigan, he is taking advantage of the proximity to the centralized downtown, connecting with old acquaintances, and discovering new groups for young professionals like the Grand Rapids Sport and Social Club. The biggest change for Peter since returning to the region is the opportunity to add to his personal network. “Now I’m excited for the weekend,” said Peter. “In Indy, I didn’t care. Here I have plans and social functions. Even though I lived here my whole life, it’s totally different now at 22.”

#MiReason for loving West Michigan
Favorite Restaurant: Blimpie
Favorite thing to do on the weekend: Spending time in Grand Haven at the family cottage
Favorite road trip: attending a Tigers game and staying at the casinos with my family
Favorite festival: Grand Rapids Summer Beer Fest in Heartside Park

2017-09-19T10:06:04+00:00 Profiles|