Luke Middleton grew up in many different places, including two different states and one Canadian province.
He was living in the Northern Virginia suburbs of Washington, DC, for nearly a decade with his wife and three kids when they decided to return to Maine. Luke also decided he was ready to go back to school to finish his undergraduate degree.
“I was familiar with Thomas College just by having lived in Maine previously. As I started looking into my options for schools, Thomas’s reputation in the state stood out to me,” said Luke.
It was also important to Luke that he got the support he needed during this big change in his life.
“I needed to be in a place where I would know and be known by faculty and staff. Going back to school as a full-time student in this season of my life made me a somewhat unusual student,” said Luke. “I had a tight timeline and knew I would need the help and support of many other people. In visiting the school, I got the clear impression that I would not be lost in the crowd and that the faculty and staff would work with me as I worked toward my goals.”
Now, Luke works as the Inside Sales Manager and Mountain-Pacific Regional sales Representative for STARC Systems, Inc., a fast-growing manufacturing company in Brunswick, Maine. His role entails inside sales, customer service management, business analysis, report generation, and Salesforce.com administration. During the past two years, Luke has also had the opportunity to support some of the consulting work on the side by performing market research and analysis in support of some merger and acquisition possibilities.
“I enjoy change and new challenges, so STARC Systems’ growth has created a dynamic environment that has been rewarding to work in,” he said. “Joining the company at an earlier phase back in 2016 positioned me to learn about a number of areas of the business and allowed me to get a front-row seat to how growth happens; how the opportunities that come with growth can be capitalized on; and, how the challenges that come with growth can be navigated. Additionally, the consulting work I’ve supported on the side has exposed me to ways of analyzing and communicating information, while learning to think through business challenges in concrete steps.”
When Luke was asked how Thomas College helped his career now, he pointed to specific classes where he learned pertinent information that he utilizes on a regular basis.
“Professor Morales’s Math for Management and Economics opened my eyes to the capabilities of Microsoft Excel. My use of Excel has only expanded since then, and I am using it now to do things I didn’t know were possible a few years ago,” he said. Jamie Campbell’s Financial Accounting and Management Information Systems classes helped give me the basis for being able to keep up with core financial discussions and to also understand QuickBooks and the mechanics of finance.”
When asked what advice he would give to high school students looking at colleges, Luke said they should consider what types of jobs they want ; where they’d like to work after they graduate from college; and, when completing the college search, they should make sure the college will be able to help fulfill those goals and dreams.
For Luke, Thomas College was that place.
“I am truly grateful to the faculty and staff at Thomas College for how they helped and supported me during my time at Thomas. Any success I had there has the fingerprints of others all over it.”