Post-graduation life can be scary and certainly unpredictable for many new college graduates. Kelly understood this firsthand as she was nearing graduation from a university in Indiana and deciding between staying in Indiana or moving home to West Michigan. While exploring potential job opportunities, Kelly knew that all her friends from her hometown had left the region so she struggled with the decision to return or stay where she had built her professional network.

Kelly’s parents told her about ReThink West Michigan happening on Thanksgiving eve back in 2017. She was already planning on returning home for the holiday, so Kelly decided to attend and explore job opportunities in her hometown. At the event, she connected with several local employers—including Meijer.

She ended up moving back home without having a job offer on the table. She was confident with the quality and quantity of job opportunities available in West Michigan from the insights she gained while networking at ReThink. A few months later, Kelly leveraged her connections from the event and applied to an available position at Meijer. She was soon hired in early 2018! Not long after landing the position, she began the transition to purchasing her first home.

Once hired, she participated in Meijer’s training program and graduated to the Business Analyst role. Meijer set her up for success by providing the tools and resources she needed to grow through the training. She mentored an intern to gain leadership experience and was connected to a great group of people at the company who ultimately became some of her best friends in West Michigan.

Kelly is still with Meijer and recently accepted a new role in digital marketing. She has also recently gotten married and officially paid off her student loans!

Her favorite things about West Michigan is the culture, lakeshore, and employment opportunities. She enjoys going to concerts, games, and local restaurants—the best part being that all activities are still inexpensive. “There’s always something going on and something to do; which I didn’t realize until I moved out of state,” said Kelly.

Want to make your own connections and explore job opportunities in the region? Attend ReThink West Michigan and meet hiring employers from various industries. Your next opportunity is waiting.