INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.—Each year a Chancellor’s Scholar Award goes to the graduating senior with the top GPA in each IUPUI school. This year the Kelley School of Business Indianapolis honor was awarded to Alicia Brunson.
“I was really surprised because I didn’t think that I would be chosen,” said Brunson. “I work hard, but I don’t really focus on grades; I focus more on learning. [The award] meant a lot to me because it means that my hard work has paid off.”
Brunson also received the Senior Scholar Award, which is presented to the top one percent of the graduating class. The finance and international studies major believes she achieved her GPA through hard work, time and stress management, plus an honest effort to ask for help when she needed it.
“Most of the time your peers and professors are willing to help, but it’s up to you to ask.”
Brunson said choosing a business degree felt like a natural decision.
“I chose finance because I was good at math and I wanted to be in business because I feel like you have great opportunities to help people and do bigger things,” she said. “I think I’ve gotten a lot out of it.”
Brunson says she chose Kelley Indianapolis, located on the IUPUI campus, for its reputation, size and its proximity to her hometown of Elkhart, Ind.
“I was looking for places that weren’t too far from home but were far enough,” she said. “I realized that the Kelley School of Business had a location in Indianapolis. That’s really exciting because it’s a very prestigious business school, and I knew that you get a lot of opportunities from going to Kelley.”
Brunson said it was the right decision.
“I’m very glad that I was able to go to Kelley Indianapolis because the faculty, staff and students have a cohesive bond. I feel like it’s not as big as Bloomington so I get to know everyone. I’m very involved in the Kelley School and knowing everyone is very beneficial.”
A May 2012 graduate, Brunson is looking for a career with a bank or financial firm that shares her principles. Ethics are important to her, so Brunson will avoid firms that take advantage of people or do not focus on customers.
“It’s important to me because I don’t feel like I can give 100 percent, or make the impact that I possibly can, if I don’t believe in the principles of the firm, or if the firm is dong something I feel isn’t right,” explained Brunson. “I don’t want to be a part of that because I have a high standard for excellence and I don’t want to do anything that goes against my principles.”