Kent Lynn: international service learning

A good salesman knows that the keys to a successful sale are trust and responsiveness. Kent Lynn, CE’85, is one of those salesmen.

Kent Lynn. (Photo by B.A. Rupert)

A client executive for IBM, Lynn manages accounts for some of the world’s top high-tech corporations. His deep understanding of his clients’ business needs helps him find ways IBM can solve their toughest business challenges. “This is IBM’s senior ‘relationship sales’ role,” Lynn says, “because at the heart of sales, clients only buy from those whom they trust.”
Lynn began his career with IBM as an account systems engineer in 1985, right after graduation. He started in a technical position, but quickly moved into sales. Clients trusted his instincts and advice.
IBM was looking for “engineering students who could think methodically, solve difficult problems and communicate effectively,” Lynn says. He fit the bill. “I took a gamble on IBM and never really looked back.”
Throughout his career, Lynn has traveled the world for work and pleasure. He credits his travel experiences, especially those in lesser-developed countries, for shaping his world view.

“We’re so fortunate to live in the U.S. where, because of a strong work ethic and mutual respect, we all benefit from having strong institutions like commerce, education and government.”

“We’re so fortunate to live in the U.S. where, because of a strong work ethic and mutual respect, we all benefit from having strong institutions like commerce, education and government,” Lynn says. “The vast majority of the world’s population doesn’t even have access to clean water, basic sanitation and transportation, which we often take for granted.”
Knowing that many S&T students share his world view, Lynn recently donated $50,000 to support international service learning at Missouri S&T. IBM will match the donation. Thanks to Lynn’s gift, S&T students who are willing to make the world a better place, perhaps while on an Engineers Without Borders project or pursuing a global studies minor, will receive help with expenses.
“I wanted to provide just a little financial support to Missouri S&T students who have decided, on their own, that they want to use their skills, talents and abilities to help make the world a better place,” Lynn says.
“International service will help our students become leaders in the global community, while improving their own skills and marketability. And they will proudly carry the mantle of Missouri S&T around the world.”

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