Jason Bergman is an Economics and Urban and Regional Development major graduating in the spring of 2019. He has recently accepted a position at Swinerton Builders as a Project Engineer in the OCLA Division in Los Angeles, California.
How did you find this position?
I found this position in a somewhat unorthodox way. I currently work at Sol Y Luna and get to meet a lot of parents and students here at the University of Arizona. On move in day for the apartment complex, I ran into a very well respected real estate principal, Jim Brooks. He ended up asking me about my education and what I want to do after college. In his capacity he works with a number of general contractors, one of which is regarded as one of the best General Contractors in all of California. I asked Jim for his business card which lead to me going out there and meeting him for a more formal meeting. After talking with him he thought I would be a good fit for the construction company. He made an introduction and they ended up asking me to come in for an interview.
Tell us about the process of interviewing with this company.
During the interview process I met two project executives. They asked me about my previous experience, what projects I worked on and what my challenges were. They also asked me if I knew anything about the organization and if I had any questions for them and their experience. The interview process was very informal, which made me feel very comfortable. When that was done, I was asked where I thought I would be in the next five years. I told them, thanked the interviewer and left cordially.
What previous experience have you had that you think contributed to your success securing this position?
My previous experience started when I played for University of Arizona Men’s Soccer Team. This gave me my voice and leadership skills because you need to be able to communicate and take control on the field which I transferred to my work. During my freshman and sophomore years, I worked for an Arizona Alumni, Marc Fells, who gave me the knowledge and skills that has developed me into a great young business man. Marc introduced me to a lot of prominent people in the real estate and construction industry. I owe a great deal to this man not only because he was helpful in getting me my internship the summer of Junior year in Los Angeles with Shawmut Design and Construction, but he is my mentor and best friend. There I worked on multiple different projects which include Sugar Factory in Century City, Nobu Ryokan Malibu, Nobu Palo Alto, Nobu Miami, and the Four Seasons in Westlake Village. I also thank my success to the Commercial Real Estate Club. I have held an executive board position for this club the last two semesters. They have really helped me develop professionally and taught me a lot about the industry, as well as lifelong friendships.
What are you most looking forward to about your position/company?
I am really excited to work with the best in the business. This is a huge opportunity for me and I am looking forward to the challenges and rewards this job will offer. I have dreamed about this since I was a teenager. To build something great and say I DID THAT! This job is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I will take full advantage of and I can’t wait.
Any word of advice you could give to your fellow Eller/ECON Students?
Be outgoing and always network! One thing my mentor always told me is that it’s not what you know, it’s who you know. You never know who you will meet along the way and if I hadn’t introduced myself to Jim, I wouldn’t be moving to Los Angeles for my dream job !