NGU News


National software company recognizes NGU Student Jake Auton No. 1 nationwide

National software company recognizes NGU Student Jake Auton No. 1 nationwideTigerville, SC (January 19, 2022) In today’s unique, post-Covid job market, finding full-time employment after graduation can seem a daunting task. Now, more than ever, internships for college students are essential elements of career preparation. Hands-on experience is just as important as coursework for those looking to make a smooth transition into the global workforce. An internship is the perfect opportunity to explore future career options, and to begin to build both a portfolio and a professional network.

For many university graduates, it can take several years to build up a strong resume. Of course, the more professional experience you have to complement your degree, the more valuable you are to potential employers. Those who complete internships, whether remote or in an office, while still in school are a step ahead of the competition and have resumes that boast the professional experience so many recent graduates lack. These placements show hiring managers that you are both motivated and organized and can thrive in a professional setting.

North Greenville University (NGU) students are offered an internship opportunity through its Student Information System and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) platform provider Jenzabar. Jenzabar’s products help more than 1,350 campuses worldwide fulfill their missions from recruitment to retention to alumni engagement and enables their clients to be a difference maker for generations of students. NGU was selected for an intern for the past four years, with the winning intern report this year.

CIO and VP for Information Technology Services Tim A. Huggins said he is thankful for the learning opportunities Jenzabar has provided for students through the Jenzabar internship program.

“Each of the Interns selected projects that have positively contributed towards NGU technology initiatives. We are grateful to have a partnership with Jenzabar, a company, whose standards focus on both quality technology and helping individuals to reach their fullest potential,” said Huggins.

The internship program, which began in 2017 and is offered annually, is funded by the Jenzabar Community Foundation, which aims to give back to the community, client schools, and their students. Giving freedom to both the institution and student, the program allows the school to choose their student interns and desired projects while providing a student with a paid internship.

The program gives interns additional training opportunities, access to Jenzabar supervision and support, and the chance to win an additional award after completing their internship. Interns are invited to JAM, Jenzabar’s annual conference in the summer with events and sessions presented by Jenzabar solutions experts, partners, and client institutions. Interns attend sessions relevant to their project and specific software to prepare them for the internship ahead of them.

Jenzabar offered 48 internship opportunities nationwide this year. NGU student Jake Auton was selected to assist NGU’s Office of Information Technology (IT) Services. Out of the 48 interns, first, second, and third place cash prizes were awarded to the student with the best internship report. Auton came in first place for Customer Success/Institutional relationships.

“What stood out to us while reviewing his final report was the level of detail. It was very detailed and organized, making it easy for us to understand his internship responsibilities and accomplishments,” said Jenzabar Marketing Coordinator and Office Administrator Anna Kinzel. “He describes in detail the processes he was working with, how the usability of a website works, and the importance of usability of a student portal. He describes how he determined the best ways to improve it, and it shows the amount of effort it took for him to accomplish his goals.”

Kinzel said that Auton really understands the importance of student success and student satisfaction and how it impacts the institution.

“The improvements that Jake made with his internship this year will help make it easier for students to access information in future as well,” she said.

Auton’s project was geared towards improving the students’ and professors’ interactions with the MyNGU portal.

“My goal was to make the website friendly for new and experienced users. This required many usability tests and an analysis of the website production abilities,” Auton said. “I wanted to alter the MyNGU page in a manner that it began to provide users with a calm, manageable, and rewarding experience. This included altering the imagery and overall functionality. From this, I learned the importance of appealing to the consumer base and providing a website experience that minimalizes effort.” 

Auton said while a site is never capable of pleasing every single user, his goal was to make it easy to use and appealing for most. 

“Through the guidance of my employers, specifically Paul Garrett, and the Lord’s influence, I was able to complete this project in a worthy manner. To be given this reward is simply a reminder of how the Lord has opened avenues in my life and blessed this university,” Auton said.

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