Involvement Enhanced Top Undergrad’s Experience

Published on January 25, 2010

UH Bauer College Honors Nuria Seijas as Fall 2009 Outstanding Undergraduate

Nuria Seijas was honored as the Fall 2009 Outstanding Undergraduate for her success in balancing honors courses with extracurricular activities and internships.

In her time at the University of Houston Bauer College of Business, accounting and finance major Nuria Seijas managed a rigorous academic load and extra-curricular commitments with poise. Recently selected as the Fall 2009 Outstanding Undergraduate, she is exceedingly gracious to those around her, owing her success to friends, family and faculty who have helped her along the way.

Seijas graduated in December from the Bauer Business Honors Program and boasts a seamless track record of UH and Bauer College Dean’s List recognitions during her enrollment. Her academic honors also include honor society inductions into Phi Kappa Phi, National Society of Collegiate Scholars and Alpha Lambda Delta. Seijas was also the recipient of three merit scholarships: Coastal Corporation Merit Scholarship, David A. Hart Merit Scholarship and Lynette Autrey Endowed Merit Scholarship.

At Bauer College, Seijas was an analyst for the Cougar Investment Research Group, served in the Finance Association and was a founding officer of the Houston Undergraduate Research Network. She also worked as an undergraduate assistant in the UH Office of Undergraduate Research.

Most notably, Seijas was admitted to the Sponsors for Educational Opportunity – Global Corporate Leadership Program in New York, NY, during the Spring 2009 semester. As a part of this prestigious program, she received the opportunity to intern at the Xerox world headquarters in Norwalk, Conn., over the summer.

The UH Bauer College Office of Communications recently spoke to Seijas about the Outstanding Undergraduate recognition, her time at Bauer and her future plans.

What made you choose Bauer for your undergraduate degree?

I learned about Bauer College of Business my senior year at Deer Park High School at the same time I became interested in finance. I wanted to be close to my family, and with Bauer’s reputation, it seemed like a good fit. I knew Bauer was a strong business school, and when I visited I could see myself fitting in and performing my best.

What do you plan to do after graduation? What are your future career goals?

I plan on continuing my education at Bauer College with the Masters of Accounting program. I’ve always known I would pursue a master’s degree. My parents, who I admire, both hold master’s degrees. I really value my education, and that’s one area where I like to push myself. For me, it was the right time to continue.

After I graduate, I look forward to working in accounting. Long-term, I see myself in finance and strategy, and to succeed in that field I need a solid understanding of accounting principles. The MS Accountancy degree is the best way for me to build out my knowledge base to advance in the job market later.

Was there a particular professor or person at Bauer that impacted you during your undergraduate studies?

Everyone I encountered at Bauer contributed to the success of my degree. I had some really great professors who opened their doors to me outside of class and made me feel comfortable asking for help – whether it was help in my studies, information on classes, internship advice or even job advice. It was obvious they really cared about my success both at Bauer and in my career.

What was the most challenging or difficult aspect of your time at Bauer? How did you overcome this?

Adjusting to upper-level classes was hard for me. The format was different than what I was used to, and the assessments were much more writing intensive. Studying turned into a completely different ballgame. Suddenly, I wasn’t just memorizing information; I had to really understand and talk intelligently about the subjects. I got through this time by learning to ask for help and to work in groups.

Also, I worked at the Office of Undergraduate Research and took 15 hours of advanced finance and accounting courses. I overcame the challenge by staying organized and prioritizing. When I started to get overwhelmed, I reminded myself that everything I was doing would benefit me and my career. Nothing I was doing was bad for me; I loved what I was doing and knew everything was worth the time and effort.

What advice would you give to incoming freshmen or transfer students coming to Bauer?

Get to know the people around you. Chances are there is someone who has been through whatever you are going through and can help you out – whether you need advice on surviving a tough class or tips on a good place to eat! Also, remember that Bauer gives you an excellent experience that is totally different from anything you expect in high school. Be prepared to change your study habits to match the expectations of Bauer College. Be prepared to think and contribute; otherwise you will have a hard time succeeding in the real world.

How does it feel to be ending this chapter of your life?

It’s exciting, but I am also closing a chapter that holds a lot of really good memories. So in a way, it’s a little bittersweet. I will miss the whole college experience. It’s such a good time to be young and expand your mind and know the possibilities of what you could do are endless. You also make a lot of friends and develop friendships you wouldn’t have had in high school.

What do you think sets Bauer apart from other business students?

At Bauer, we have such a great program, but we don’t have a sense of entitlement. People just get down to business and work hard. We don’t take anything for granted because we appreciate the experience. A strong work ethic comes more naturally for a Bauer student.

Bauer prepares its students really well for the workplace. I didn’t know this until I interned for a Fortune 500 company and worked on Wall Street. Naturally, I was nervous at first! However, I quickly realized how well-prepared I actually was. With my skill-set, it was easy for me to work in groups, think strategically, contribute and converse with others in the field. At Bauer, everything you learn in the classroom has real-life applications. Bauer gives you the confidence to succeed.

By Lori Reichardt