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Native American Student Business Leader Gets Start With Wal-Mart

Native American student Danielle Denton has gotten a jump start on her career in business by interning with Wal-Mart.
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Danielle Denton

For one 22-year-old, working at the headquarters of what is touted as the world’s largest retail company has been a good learning experience and one that she’ll explore further after she graduates with a bachelor’s degree from Haskell Indian Nations University in May 2012.

Danielle Denton, of the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska, was a summer intern this year at the Wal-Mart corporate headquarters in Bentonville, Arkansas, one of three students from Haskell chosen to intern there.

“The most interesting part of my experiences so far has been actually applying the things that I have been learning to real-life situations, both work-related and personal,” she said.

Denton, a senior studying business administration and tribal management, credits Haskell for a learning experience that has more than met her expectations.

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“I am very lucky to attend such an amazing school,” she said. “I have had the opportunity to learn from some very amazing and brilliant professors who have made my entire undergraduate experience unlike anything I could have gotten anywhere else.

“I am currently the secretary of the American Indian Business Leaders Association (AIBL) at Haskell. As an organization on campus, we are always striving to volunteer our time to other students and the school.

“As executive members, we serve as mentors to the younger business students at Haskell and try to help with anything that those students may need,” she concluded. “AIBL has given me the opportunity to be a contributing member of the Haskell community and be engaged in things that are affecting us as students.”

After graduation from Haskell, Denton has considered working toward a Master’s of Business Administration, but is not certain whether she will do so and, accordingly, has not decided on a college. She said she also plans to continue her internship with Wal-Mart’s corporate home office and “explore opportunities within the company.”

The Lebanon, Oregon native has received academic honors both in high school and at the college level, including graduating magna cum laude when she received the two-year Associate of Science degree at Haskell in business administration and receiving a $2,500 UPS Foundation education award.

She was also the key student speaker at the American Indian College Fund’s annual gala in October, saying then that an AICF scholarship of $4,500 “definitely turned things around for me.”