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Mortgage company seeks top students

Rear Admiral (USN Ret.) Thomas C. Lynch, chairman of the board, NewDay USA; Col. John Fenzel, executive vice president for human resources and recruiting operations, NewDay USA; Jose Sartarelli, and Adm. T. Joseph Lopez, former vice chairman, WVU Board of Governors.

The College of Business and Economics continuously seeks to add new companies to its roster of employers recruiting students on campus.

In late April, College of Business and Economics Dean Jose Sartarelli and Rita Sailer, director of the Center for Career Development, met with representatives of NewDay USA, a mortgage firm headquartered in Fulton, Md., to do just that. 

The visitors came to WVU to discuss how they could develop a partnership with the College and recruit promising students.

“NewDay USA is growing and has a lot of opportunities,” Sailer said. “They have hired WVU graduates in the past, and they were pleased. Now, they want to develop a pipeline of our brightest, most talented graduates.”

Accompanying the group was Retired Adm. T. Joseph Lopez, a West Virginia native, graduate of Potomac State College and former vice chairman, WVU Board of Governors.

NewDay USA is a mortgage lender offering a wide range of mortgage-based products. The company is the exclusive provider of mortgage lending for Veterans of Foreign Wars members. The company is also a HUD-approved mortgage lender and in 2010 ranked nationally as a top VA mortgage and reverse mortgage lender in the nation. Retail branch offices serve customers in Chicago, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C., areas.

Ryan Smith of Glenelg, Md., is a 2010 finance graduate and assistant vice president of retail services at NewDay USA. He joined the company in September of that year and recently spoke to students about his experience at the firm. He said he is happy with the company and encourages WVU students to follow in his footsteps.

“If you want an opportunity to join a company that will invest in you and give you every tool you need to become successful, then yes, I would absolutely recommend that graduates from WVU and all over look at starting a relationship with NewDay,” he said.

The company has an educational component based on continuous learning called NewDay University. Paul Donohue heads NewDay University and said the mortgage industry changes so rapidly that employees must continually upgrade their knowledge.

“The thing we have learned is that young graduates may have two to three jobs by the time they are 30 years old,” he said. “They are trying to find their way, to get a foothold. But if you give them a place to grow, they don’t leave, and there is great job satisfaction. That’s good for the company, for our employees, and it’s good for our customers.”

Sailer said that unfortunately students often simply are not aware of opportunities at firms such as NewDay USA. 

“One of the things that we do is to create visibility for companies,” Sailer said. “We have to educate students about companies and careers – it is part of learning process.” She said her office is increasing awareness for the company and called it an “outstanding opportunity that B&E graduates should investigate.”

They should, said Smith, if they are interested in working where career advancement is encouraged. “NewDay allows for growth within the company and encourages it,” he said. Some bigger companies make their employees feel like they are just another number working for them, but at NewDay you get a sense of community were everyone knows each other by name. There is a lot of interaction throughout the day and even with upper management, so relationships get built all the time.”

Donohue said the company has 350 employees now and plans to expand to 1,000 in the next two years.

Col. John Fenzel, the company’s executive vice president for human resources and recruiting operations, said WVU has students who will make great employees. “WVU is one of the best places in the nation to find world-class talent,” he said. “We routinely cast our net wide for the best and brightest young men and women with great work ethics and values, who want to make a difference and be a part of something larger than themselves. We find them at WVU— in spades!”

He said prospects in the mortgage banking industry abound. “Specifically at NewDay USA opportunities are numerous, rewarding and diverse,” he commented. “We have made a significant investment in developing a compliance-based culture where ethical and responsible practices and a customer-centric outlook are expected of everyone in the company. Ultimately, our principal mission is to take care of veterans, senior citizens and their families. The goal, with every customer encounter, is to put them in a better place than they were before they called us.”