University of Minnesota

Human Resource Development Student Profile

Name: Noelle Knutson
Graduation Year:
Hometown: White Bear Lake, MN

How and why did you choose your major?

After taking a few interest assessments and reflecting on what it is I enjoy and excel at, I chose HRD. I enjoy working with people, and also wanted a strategic aspect incorporated into it. HRD captured my attention because I would be able to develop people in a business setting. After looking through the courses HRD offered and exploring the HR world, I thought it would be a good fit for me.

Please give a description (in your words) of your major including the things you learn, favorite classes, and any challenges you have faced.

HRD is the process of developing and unleashing human expertise for the purpose of improvement. In this major you learn about how organizations function, how to approach organizational problems, and different ways to train and teach adults. So far, my favorite class is Intro to HRD (OLPD 3601). This class gives a great overview of what HRD is, and how it can apply to the workplace. What I really enjoy about the HRD classes is that the majority of them are very interactive and you get to work on a lot of group projects. A challenge for me is taking all the core major courses in one semester. The classes tend to overlap with the information they give you. While this really makes the information stick, it can become very repetitive class after class. I recommend spreading out your major requirements and supporting program throughout your time in HRD.

What types of experiences outside of the classroom have you had relating to your major? (i.e. clubs, jobs, internships, volunteering, study abroad etc.)

I had a summer internship in an HR office over the summer. I got to work on training/employee recognition and also administrative HR tasks. One thing this internship showed me is just how big the HR world is, and how many different subsections of HR there are. I just formed a new student group called 'Undergraduates in OLPD'. Our mission is to create a platform for mainly HRD, BME and Leadership minor undergrads (and anyone else) to work on homework, network, and participate in activities related to OLPD.

In your opinion, what is one thing, or one piece of advice that other students pursuing your major should know?

My advice to HRD majors is to talk to professionals working in HR- especially your professors. They have so much insight and information about HR, and are almost always willing to share that knowledge!

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