Justin Friend and Jimmy Long: A Young Alum’s View on Moving to a Big City

Featured image courtesy of SF Travel

It has been shown that companies across the country are hiring more millennials and students right out of college than ever before. But how can that person, or in this case, brother, ensure that they are found in the big city?

Justin Friend and Jimmy Long are two former International Headquarters (IHQ) staff members who have made a name for themselves out on the West Coast. While  the two Ball State University alums are fairly recent graduates, they have both found the key to making it in San Francisco.

Justin Friend

Friend began his journey after college as an Educational Leadership Consultant (ELC). When his service to IHQ was complete, Friend decided it was time to put down some grass roots and take the jump into the tech world at Salesforce in Indianapolis.

Following his time there working with the marketing cloud, Friend was relocated to San Francisco, where he now serves as a manager for enablement for global customer success. In this role, he completes all tasks from on-boarding to podcasting to ensuring that his employees have the right tools to succeed at their jobs.

Since moving to San Francisco, Friend has flourished and found his home.

“I love San Francisco, I feel like I can be myself here,” said Friend. “There’s always something going on; it’s a big city, but it feels small, it’s not like it takes 10 years to get somewhere.

“I think that like every day at my job is not the same, every day in San Francisco has not been the same.”

In Friend’s words, he feels that he is a true millennial, which has helped him immensely in the constantly-changing world of Salesforce. To brothers about to graduate college or young alums looking to break into the job world, Friend sees youth as an advantage.

“It’s definitely an advantage of being a young alum, we are not afraid to go after what we think is ours,” said Friend. “I think that’s just the skillset of knowing what you want and doing anything you can to get it is the true nature of our generation.”

Jimmy Long

While Long also started life after graduation on the IHQ track, he soon found that sometimes going after what seems like an impossible dream is the first step to the rest of your life.

After serving two and a half years as Associate Director of Communications at IHQ, Long packed all of his belongings in a van and made the cross-country trip to San Francisco.

While there were a lot of unknowns, Long made the best of the situation and relied on the help of his Lambda Chi network in the Bay Area.

“I’ve learned a lot about myself, the people around me, and what I’m able to do all through moving out here, living on a friend’s couch, working as a barista to hold me over,” said Long. “There have been so many steps I never thought I would be able to do.

“Because I moved out here with the support of the fraternity and the support of my friends and family, I was able to do it and completed one of my dreams.”

Now, Long works for Lyft headquarters and has embraced being a young alum in a city that he loves.

“Being part of Lambda Chi has been one of the most influential experiences of my life,” assured Long. “I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, I wouldn’t be where I am without Lambda Chi.”

Stay tuned for the full interviews in our upcoming June LCA Made story.

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