Meet Austin Billedeaux, an industrial technology (now engineering technology) major from Lafayette, La., who is minoring in business and Spanish.
Austin is a project assistant for Garden City Construction, a local general contracting firm, and is looking forward to the ample opportunities his degree affords him.
“This field of study could lead you to work on an oil rig, any type of production plant, or even doing cost analysis for a large-scale construction project,” he said. “There are so many opportunities that come with this major. The options are endless, really.”
Austin added his business minor largely because it was already integrated into his major.
“Having taken enough business courses to minor,” he said, “I now have some basic skills to not only understand the cash flow of a process but how to better manage myself and others.”
To distinguish himself from other potential job candidates, Austin also added a Spanish minor to his curriculum.
“I find that although it’s important to understand the technical side of things, I wanted to reach outside the box and grab onto something that would be extremely useful in everyday life: another language,” he said.
Austin energized his foreign language studies by participating in a study abroad program.
“This was basically an intermediate grammar class for foreigners taught in Spanish,” Austin explained. “I enjoyed the interaction with other foreign students from around the world. Outside the classroom, I really enjoyed my time living in another country where the climate was brilliant, and the city life was always alive with cultural holidays and busy metropolis scenery.”
Austin knew he wanted to attend UL Lafayette because his life was already established in Lafayette. His parents and most of his other family members are also alumni.
“I felt it was an easy choice,” he said.
Austin was less sure about his field of study. Originally a general studies major, Austin changed his major to English, then civil engineering before finally landing in engineering technology.
“I’ve always had a passion for learning and understanding a process, then finding a way to better that process,” Austin said. “Doing this makes things easier on one’s self and for anyone else who may be involved.”
This skill, coupled with the versatility of engineering technology, gave Austin confidence for his future.
“If you understand how the major works, and where it is applicable, you can truly find a job almost anywhere in the world. I’m not kidding,” he said. “So many companies need technical and analytical minds so that their processes can be analyzed and restructured to be more efficient.”
Outside the classroom, Austin has been involved in El Club de Español de UL (CEUL) and the National Society of Leadership and Success (NSLS), also known as Sigma Alpha Pi, and the International Student Council (ISC).
“The NSLS is an organization that helps people discover and achieve their goals, which is exactly what I did,” Austin said. “I became so much more organized in school, in everyday life, and even work. I learned how to set and manage goals for myself and even help others do the same by becoming a facilitator.”
As part of his participation in NSLS, Austin has worked extensively on his Better World Project (BWP).
“I’ve chosen to collaborate with a couple of friends, and we have created a small, non-profit organization called Project Parcs where we aim to create a fellowship among organizations in our neighborhoods in order to improve our parks,” Austin explained. “By completing this BWP, I will become an Executive Member of this honor society and feel more than accomplished with my work.”
The skills and abilities Austin has learned through his courses, organizations, and other experiences at UL Lafayette have prepared him to confidently venture into his future.
“There are so many opportunities at this university. You just have to look for them and I guarantee you that you will find exactly what you’re looking for,” he said.