More than 100 alumni and friends joined representatives of Millikin University and Caterpillar Inc. at an event held Nov. 18, 2014, at the Caterpillar Visitors Center in Peoria, Ill. The featured speaker, Doug Oberhelman, a 1975 Millikin graduate, is Chairman and CEO of Caterpillar Inc., and the event was sponsored by Millikin alumnus LeRoy Hagenbuch, class of 1965.
At the event, Oberhelman credited his Millikin experience with helping to lay the foundation for his successful career.
"Millikin University was the perfect place for me to prepare for my career. I had great professors who instilled in me the confidence to succeed, and the campus environment was rich with opportunities that helped me grow professionally and personally," Oberhelman said. "I know Millikin is that same great place for students today, as it was for me then."
Millikin graduate Jake Manzella from Monticello, Ill., echoed Oberhelman's enthusiasm for the preparation afforded by a Millikin degree, speaking from his personal experience. Manzella completed two internships with Caterpillar during his time as a Millikin student, and graduated in December. He began working for the company full time in January.
In describing the university's commitment to its unique Performance Learning approach that demands students enact the skills, attitudes, and confidence to succeed early in their college years, Millikin President Patrick White noted: "We are doing exactly what so many in our society say higher education should be doing: helping students not only to get jobs but to be prepared to continue to grow in those jobs."
Oberhelman also expressed his confidence in President White's leadership of the university, noting, "I've become acquainted with President Patrick White since he came to Millikin, and it's clear the university is in very good hands under his leadership. I look forward to the great strides Millikin, its students and alumni will continue to make in the years ahead with President White at the helm. All alumni can take pride in knowing that the university is positioned for even greater success in the future."