Alumni Spotlight: Dan Printz
Dan Printz found his niche once he stepped out of his comfort zone, and made the most out of his college experience.
The Arcanum, Ohio, native graduated from IU East in May 2015 with a bachelor's degree in business administration with a concentration in marketing and a minor in psychology.
He came to IU East in fall 2011, without a plan. He didn’t know what he wanted to do, but he was determined to make the most of his experience -- a decision that would ultimately lead him to opportunities to be involved on campus, both academically and through student organizations, and within the community as well as an advantageous internship.
"When I first began at IU East, I did not really have any sense of direction," Printz said. "I found it amazing that some people knew exactly what they wanted to do upon coming into college, because I was not like that at all. I knew the only way I was going to find my direction, and myself, was to get involved and completely immerse myself in the college experience."
That decision brought self-discovery and a realization that IU East prepared students for the future.
"I surprised myself, because of my ability to perform and accomplish goals, but IU East surprised me in its ability to cultivate students, who may be at any level of development," he said. "The university truly embodies a nurturing role, providing multiple opportunities to connect students with beneficial experiences."
As a peer mentor for First-Year Seminar, a course aimed at helping students succeed in their first year of college, Printz assured the freshman students he mentored that their future is in their hands.
He's also a three-year member of the Enactus team -- a community of student, academic and business leaders committed to using the power of entrepreneurial action to transform lives and shape a better more sustainable world -- and has served as the student organization’s vice president and president.
Additionally, Printz joined the business honor society, Delta Mu Delta, serving as its vice-president his senior year. Outside of IU East, he served as a judge for the Business Professionals of American Competition for high school students.
Printz was the recipient of the 2015 Outstanding Student in Marketing. He also worked 30 hours a week at a local landscaping company and as a cook and server at Bob Evans.
But where he really found his niche was interning with the marketing department at Reid Hospital & Health Care Services.
Printz met with IU East career and experiential learning coordinator, Liz Ferris, several times in 2013 to discuss possible marketing internships. Ferris contacted IU alumna Judi Willett, who was then the community relations specialist/marketing at Reid. She and the director agreed an intern would be valuable to their department, and felt Printz was a good fit for their team. As an intern, Printz conducted market research, helped with marketing and foundation events, created an advanced directives toolkit and maintained multiple spreadsheets and online profiles.
Printz began his six-month internship in May 2014, but continued as a volunteer in 2015 to gain more experience in healthcare marketing while completing his bachelor’s degree. Willett, now the director of marketing at Reid, was impressed with his contribution to marketing initiatives and was thrilled to have him join the team full-time as a marketing specialist/RPA one month after he completed his degree at IU East.
“From day one, Dan has been eager to be involved and participate in hospital initiatives,” Willett said. “While Dan’s experience has hopefully been more than he could’ve imagined, having Dan as an intern exceeded my expectations as well.”
Overall, Printz said, his experiences at IU East reassured him that stepping out of his comfort zone and making the most of his time on campus was the right decision.
"I learned that comfort zones are overrated. Comfort zones are nice, but nothing ever grows there. I learned that in order for me to come out of college with any sense of accomplishment, I was going to have to push myself more than I have ever done in my life," he said. "Every year I juggled another ball in the circus show that is college. I learned, with a little assistance from professors who care, I can empower myself through my own actions. If I did drop the ball, I was able to recover quickly, and continue onward with the same level of determination. Through my experience here at IU East, I gained confidence, knowledge and a sense of purpose."