Emily Shoemaker
Statistics and Actuarial Science double major
Information Digital Solutions Analyst, Eli Lilly & Company

What did you declare Statistics and Actuarial Science as your majors? 
When contemplating what to study in college, I was given the advice to pay attention to what homework I would reach for first after school. For me, it’s always been math. Ever since elementary school, as soon as I got home from school I would go up to my room and start working on my math assignments because I found the problems both relaxing and stimulating. I had never really considered a career in math as a possibility for me until I had a few high school teachers pull me aside and share the potential they saw in me. While my major was challenging, I enjoyed even the hardest of classes because I chose to pursue a subject area that I was interested in and that further developed my natural talents. Not to mention, the Department of Mathematical Sciences has some of the kindest and most encouraging professors and faculty that made learning fun.

What is your current position and how did Butler help prepare you for this role? 
I work in the Tech Department at Eli Lilly as an Analyst in the clinical trial space. Through the implementation of innovative technology, my department is in turn driving innovation in trials. Although my work strays from my major slightly, I am grateful for how well my Butler education prepared me for this new chapter. What I believe sets my education apart is that Butler emphasizes learning skill sets through hands-on experiences rather than learning purely through memorization. Having the personal touch of smaller class sizes and more time to interact with professors is what drives this, in my opinion. Overall, I feel the value of my degree from Butler is that it taught me something timeless—transferable skills and how to critically think. 

What is your favorite part of your job? 
What I appreciate about Lilly is that the culture allows me to have it all;I can thrive in a technical role while also feeling fulfilled through a sense of community and purpose. First and foremost, I am appreciative of Lilly’s strong sense of culture that emphasizes the importance of community at work. I am grateful to have incredible mentors and lifelong friends at work that feel like family. 

What are your long-term career goals? 
In all honesty, I fell into my role at Lilly unexpectedly when I applied for an internship as a junior. At the time, I was questioning what my ideal career would look like after college and decided to try something out of my comfort zone. And to my surprise, I loved it! It was an unexpected twist in my journey, but I am so grateful it happened. Through my internship I met amazing mentors and colleagues who introduced me to new possibilities and brought out new talents in me. Therefore, I am going to continue to chase my interests by taking it one position at a time and using my experiences along the way to better define what my dream job is. In the meantime, I plan to embrace the unpredictable bumps in my journey. I hope to have a long career at Lilly because of how much I resonate with the company culture and mission of creating life-changing medicine. I can see myself getting an MBA or Masters/PhD in Statistics eventually as well. Also, given recent volunteering opportunities in teaching young girls how to code, I have considered teaching in the future and empowering youth to join STEM fields. 

What advice do you have for current Butler students? 
Comparison truly is the greatest thief of joy, and that makes staying true to yourself even more important. What I mean by this is, after high school, for the first time in your life, you and your peers start taking different paths in life and moving at different paces. That experience grows exponentially more after college graduation. While this certainly isn’t a bad thing, at first it can feel like that. It is easy to start comparing your timeline and decisions about your future to what others are doing by thinking things like “Am I behind?,” “What if I decided to do that after graduation like them,” etc. The fact of the matter is, success looks differently for everyone and there’s no right or wrong answer. Therefore, it’s healthy to not measure your successes based on what other people are doing, what they have accomplished, or what timeline their life is moving at. At the end of the day, college should be a time to explore how you want to define success and allow yourself to chase it through your education, extracurriculars, and friendships.