For Joel Clum, one of this year’s Broad College Young Alumni Achievement Award recipients, Michigan State University has played a key role in his career. Ironically, he initially planned to attend a different university. However, after campus visits and being impressed by the Broad College of Business, Clum made an eleventh-hour switch to MSU—a decision that has certainly paid off.
A native of Howell, Michigan, Clum said the size and diversity of MSU’s student body exposed him to a very talented community that would become invaluable. And, in addition to his business courses, he cites the breadth of classes and subjects available at MSU, such as Social Science and Arts and Humanities, as well as his time spent studying abroad in China, as important contributors to his global business knowledge.
While at the Broad College, Clum was a member of Students Consulting for Non-Profit Organizations (SCNO) and served as president of the organization his senior year. Through the organization’s advisor, Helen Dashney, he learned about the Financial Market’s Institute (FMI), applied and was admitted.
Since graduating from MSU, he has worked for a variety of organizations, starting with Chicago-based Accenture, working with international clients and aiding in merger integration and company growth.
Three years later he joined the start-up transportation company, Carrier Direct, and became president. During that time he also helped found the Blue Water Group. He finds satisfaction building companies from the ground up. Recently, Clum was recruited to become the senior vice president of franchise operations at Worldwide Express. At both Carrier Direct and Worldwide Express, he has continued to hire and work with his fellow Spartan alumni.
“MSU students and grads have an incredible baseline intelligence, coupled with a unique work ethic,” he said, adding that this comes from their commitment to hard work and to achieving goals.
Joel has continued to support programs he valued on campus, sharing insights with current SCNO leaders and becoming a President’s Club supporter of the FMI during its successful endowment campaign.
On receiving the Young Alumni Achievement Award, Clum said that he is “humbled to be in such great company.” And while it is certainly great to know that his work is validated, for him, the real reward is being an example to young students and grads of MSU, and showing them that anything is possible.