Alumna talks careers with NDSU students
Published March 2018
Brooke Schommer is a 2002 apparel, retail merchandising and design graduate and received the 2018 Distinguished Alumni Award from the College of Human Development and Education. She is a senior strategic sourcing manager for Asurion in Nashville, Tennessee. Schommer is responsible for strategy and negotiation of contracts for the marketing, finance, legal and human resources departments. She leads teams in the U.S. and Philippines.
Earlier in her career, she was recruited to work at Target in Minneapolis as an operations manager and later promoted to a strategic sourcing lead. She formed an alumni group at Target and worked with the human resources department to recruit NDSU students. She currently serves on the college’s Board of Visitors alumni group.
Schommer visited campus in February 2018 to accept the award and speak with current students about her career path and NDSU experience.
What is one of the most exciting things about your work?
The constant change and challenge. Every day is something new, from a different purchase I have not done before, to changes in the marketplace. It’s always exciting and never boring.
How did NDSU prepare you for your career?
I received foundational knowledge about buying. How to work with my clients, what to think about when making purchases, but also professional writing. I communicate a lot on a daily basis.
What accomplishments are you most proud of in your career?
I think being recruited is always a big accomplishment, and it has happened to me a few times. I like that my expertise and skills are developed enough for companies to seek me out instead of me always having to find them. I also think that delivering more than $28 million dollars in savings to Target was a big accomplishment.
What advice do you have for current NDSU students?
Don't pigeon-hole yourself into the obvious jobs. Allow yourself the opportunity to try something that, on the surface, may not be exactly what you thought you'd want to do or be interested in. I thought I was going to be a fashion designer and the path to strategic sourcing opened up for me and has been as fulfilling as I dreamed my life would be as a fashion designer. I'm glad I took this path.
What does the Distinguished Alumni Award mean to you?
Wow. A lot. It is a great honor to be 18 years into my career and receive this recognition. I hope to continue to do NDSU proud.