Although his family struggled financially growing up – his family of six lived in a two-bedroom apartment – Duane Driskell says he was determined to overcome the adversity that comes with poverty. And, thanks to his mother’s strong emphasis on school, he knew that it started with college. So he worked hard in high school and was able to come to USF as part of the invitation-only Bulls Business Community. He was also able to gain early admission to the business school and be part of the Business Honors Program, which means he will take extra research courses and requires him to earn high grades and complete as honors thesis. The work is hard, but Driskell is determined to succeed.
Driskell says that the choice to be part of these two groups has lead him to dream, introducing him to things he was completely naïve to before, such as internships, study abroad opportunities, and the importance of networking.
Since coming to USF, Driskell has participated in the six week study abroad program in Italy, had a one-on-one with business leader Jeff Vinik, enjoyed dinner with USF’s Board of Trustees, worked as an intern with USF Athletics, and served as a student assistant for the College of Mathematics and Statistics’ Urban Scholars Outreach program.
He has also landed a job as a student relationship officer at GTE Financial. He handles account maintenance, loan origination, and financial literacy education projects that range from personal budgeting, credit awareness, and opportunities available to students.
Driskell recently accepted a summer internship offer with Big Four accounting firm Deloitte a firm that, he admits, he had never heard of until a year ago. But, Driskell says, now that he is aware of the opportunities out there for those who work hard, he is determined to make the most of them.