What's life like for UM-Dearborn student Kyle Piestrak?

August 22, 2022

This week sophomore Kyle Piestrak talks about the benefits of living at home and continuing to work (and climb the ladder) at the job he landed in high school. The College of Business student is doing this while still enjoying Wolverine perks — like student tickets to U-M football games.

Sophomore Kyle Piestrak is an assistant manager at the Allen Park Culver's.
Sophomore Kyle Piestrak is an assistant manager at the Allen Park Culver's.

Kyle Piestrak, marketing major, sophomore

Where he lives:
“I’m from Allen Park, which is a 15-minute drive to campus. I live with my parents and sister in the house I grew up in.”

The perks of home:
“Going from high school to college is a change. There’s more independence and new people, which is great. But that independence comes with the responsibility of managing my time and money. It’s also figuring out what comes next for me — like do I want to be an engineer or do I want to work in business marketing? Or can I do both? 

I’m learning more and more about what I’m interested in doing as a career and what the options are. So it’s nice to have a familiar place to come home to while I’m figuring out what my future looks like— and it’s a plus that my home is close to where I work and have worked since high school. It’s also nice to save money because renting is really expensive right now.”

Life outside of school:
“I’m an assistant manager at Culver’s in Allen Park. I’ve worked there for three years, starting in high school when they opened. After I graduated high school, I was promoted to assistant manager. Since they pay well and the people are nice, I wanted to keep working there. It works because UM-Dearborn is so close and my manager schedules my work hours around school.

Working at Culver’s is beyond learning how a fast food restaurant works. It’s also shown me that I like marketing and the strategy around it. The owners have done some interesting things to market themselves at a community level. For example, they’ve set up high school scholarships and take part in fundraising events. I’ve also gotten to talk with our district marketing manager. So on top of having a good job that helps me pay for school, I am also picking up ideas that I can use in the future if I go into business marketing.”

How this Wolverine has fun:
“I try to plan my week where I have at least one free day to unwind. At home, I have a gaming room in my basement. That’s where I go to relax.

 Kyle spending time in his home's game room.
Kyle spending time in his home's game room.

This fall I'll be spending time at the Big House with my friends. Students can get football season tickets for a little over $200. That’s the going rate of a ticket to go to the U-M/MSU game, so it’s a good deal and a definite perk of being at UM-Dearborn.” (Note: Student season tickets are only available the spring prior to the season. Here’s info from the Michigan Athletics website.)

Favorite spot on campus (so far):
“There’s a place on campus called the MSEL where you can do 3-D printing and other projects. Any student can use it, but I was there for an engineering group project where we coded a Mars Rover and then made a 3-D printing form. You can make pretty much anything there, and they have staff there to help you out.”

Text by Sarah Tuxbury.