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Tough love: Internship at global leader guides student’s future by Katie Staats ’09, MBA ’11

Headquartered in Mentor, Ohio, Cardinal Commerce

by Visa & MasterCard SecureCode) and alternative

has become a global mobile and e-commerce leader

payment brands online such as PayPal, Google

in implementing authentication initiatives and securing

Checkout, Amazon Payments and Bill Me Later. I had to

transactions and alternative payment brands. With a

learn a lot of new terms and acronyms,” Armbruster said.

developed market background and expertise in the industry, Cardinal Commerce continues to expand

The importance of internships is to gain insight into

their business globally and strives to be a major player

networking and receive real job experience. In a

in the international market.

successful company such as Cardinal Commerce,

Senior Gus Armbruster first arrived at Cardinal Commerce with another intern, Michael Lechner. Armbruster and Lechner began training for three

Armbruster was able to learn from CEO Michael E. Keresman III, also a member of the Lake Erie College Board of Directors.

weeks together until Lechner was brought on board

“At company meetings, Keresman would acknowledge

as a full-time employee in the merchant services

all employees, no matter their rank in the company,”

department. Training was grueling because the

Armbruster said. “I felt special even though I was

content was new, but it helped Armbruster learn about Centinel, a product based on credit card authentication. At Cardinal Commerce, Armbruster worked closely with Vice President of Merchant Services Mary Ballard, as well as the sales and marketing departments. Maggie O’Neil, sales support coordinator, also was instrumental in Armbruster’s learning, teaching him the internal and external components of the business.

an intern.” Not only has Cardinal Commerce acted as a stepping stone and foundation for Armbruster’s professional career, but Lake Erie College has done so as well. Armbruster was shy when he first came to the College, but he learned how to build relationships through his classmates and professors. “These were one of the many skills I needed to

Cardinal Commerce is a young and fast-growing

succeed at Cardinal Commerce. I felt comfortable

company. For two weeks, Armbruster was charged

speaking with vice presidents, which helped me

with researching major competitors in the Australian

complete my assigned projects,” Armbruster said.

market. The strategy was to partner with these players in order to get Cardinal Commerce’s name out in this particular market.

As a linebacker on Lake Erie’s football team, Armbruster contributed to the September 2011 win over top rival Gannon University.

Although he enjoyed his research of Australian competitors, Armbruster was faced with a few

Double majoring in business administration and

challenges while at Cardinal Commerce. “My greatest

human resources management, Armbruster will

challenge was learning about the company itself. I

graduate in May 2012. He hopes to continue his career

was unfamiliar with credit card authentication (verified

at Cardinal Commerce or join in his family’s business.

LAKE ERIE

| FALL ‘11

25

Fall 2011 Magazine  

Lake Erie College Magazine, Fall 2011 issue

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