Each week we sit down with one of our talented Co-op Students from a variety of majors and discuss their experience working as part of the Birchwood Team.
Padraig Miller, Special Projects Manager
Q: Why did you decide to work at Birchwood?
A: “I applied at Birchwood and ultimately accepted a position here for numerous reasons. A big reason was the feedback I had heard from friends who already worked for Birchwood. I knew a few guys from school who were working here and always spoke very highly of the company making it an easy choice to apply and accept a position here. In my free time, I also have a passion for cars and I figured working for a company in the automotive sector was the best way to combine my passion for cars and for the subjects I’m learning in school. It truly was a perfect match.”
Q: How does the nature of your job at Birchwood relate to your degree and/or career of choice?
A: “My position at Birchwood has given me the opportunity to work on a project that uses concepts from various finance courses that I still need to take at school. This has proven to be invaluable since I am gaining experience by applying these ideas to a real life situation which will help me to excel in these courses when I take them. Since I am planning to major in Finance, being able to better understand the content of a course will allow me to complete this major with more ease than if I had not worked at Birchwood.”
Q: What have you enjoyed the most from being at Birchwood?
A: “I’ve enjoyed having the opportunity to learn in an environment where everyone wants you to succeed at what you do. Everywhere I look in this company I see extremely knowledgeable and friendly people who want to share their wealth of knowledge with you. This type of environment is incredibly conducive to learning because if you have a question there will be someone to answer that question and they ensure you understand, giving you the knowledge and tools necessary to grow academically allowing you to achieve your goals.”
Q: What have you found valuable from your time here?
A: “It is hard to call any one skill or piece of knowledge gained while working at Birchwood as the most valuable. Every day presents the opportunity to learn something new and challenge yourself in a way you never have before. One instance of this that really sticks out is having to teach myself a portion of Corporate Finance (a class I have not yet taken), in order to progress the project I am working on. Learning this material by actively using it in my project on a day-to-day basis helped give me a deeper understanding of the concepts and ultimately has prepared me for corporate finance. When I take that class in school, I feel I will do significantly better than if I had not worked at Birchwood because now I have prior knowledge and the experience of having actually used that material in a real life setting.”
Q: Share something about yourself as a student, and more importantly, as an individual that we should know about you.
A: “As a student I am very involved with student groups. I am the VP of Finance for the University of Manitoba Leadership Organization (UMLO), VP of Events for the University of Manitoba Investment Group (UMIG), and I am also the Logistics Coordinator for the 2017 Kinesiology Games being held right here in Winnipeg. So when I’m not in class I’m still busy at school trying to enhance the student experience for my fellow students.”
Q: Are there any funny stories from your time at Birchwood?
A: “This summer while Shane, Jesse and I occupied the student bullpen, we found a cardboard cut-out of Steve Chipman in the stairwell adjacent to the bullpen. We decided that the cardboard cut-out would look better in our office then being stored in a stairwell. So we brought the cut out into the office and attached a speech bubble to it with the caption “GREAT JOB INTERNS!!” By the end of that day Brian Bell had seen it, got a good laugh out of it and sent a picture to Steve Chipman. The cut out is still in the bullpen as we have running jokes about how Steve is keeping an eye on us and motivating us.”
Interested in joining the team? Click here to view current openings.