Corporate Communications

Welcome to Belden: Congrats to Six New Early Career Leadership Program Grads!

When a recent college graduate starts out on their very first job hunt, it can feel overwhelming. They might have a long-term end goal in mind—like being a business leader—but what steps do they need to take to get there? How should they even get started? If they’ve never had a full-time job before, how will they know what type of work they excel at and enjoy most? After all, that first job can determine your entire career trajectory. It can set you up for success—or for a slow and frustrating start.


According to the University of Washington, it can take up to six months for the average college graduate to find their first job. And once they find a job, is it the right one?


For many of these reasons, we decided to handle the hiring process for college graduates a little bit differently than most employers.


Instead of appointing young professionals to specific positions straight out of college, we take a unique approach. Each graduate enters Belden’s Early Career Leadership Program (ECLP), which trains recent graduates to become leaders in an area they choose after lots of hands-on work and practice. This fast-paced, versatile program exposes young employees to all areas of our business so they can see what it’s really like to work in a certain field.


As a three-year rotational program, ECLP offers participants several hands-on tracks to choose from:


  • Finance and accounting
  • General management
  • HR
  • IT
  • Operations & supply chain
  • Research & development
  • Sales & marketing


Depending on the tracks they choose, participants may work in locations around the globe.


Each graduate gets to spend one year in three different rotations to make sure they develop a solid understanding of what’s involved with that specific career path. During each one-year rotation, participants gain real-world, hands-on experiences through day-to-day tasks, special projects and training opportunities. The program also allows them to:


  • Receive feedback on their work and ideas from senior leader mentors
  • Develop new and global business connections through learning projects with peers and coworkers
  • Access Belden’s senior executives for inspiration, education and insight


In July 2021, we honored six ECLP graduates who successfully completed the three-year program and are now able to take on full-time responsibilities in exciting positions at Belden based on the work and projects they enjoyed most:


  • Merve Arabul, HR Manager
  • Lukas Barth, Lean Projects Manager
  • Emir Baydur, Production Team Leader
  • Felix Dressler, Connectivity Center Manager
  • Alessia Favaro, Strategic Marketing Manager
  • Dale Lettern, Internal Account Support & Manager


To celebrate, a live graduation ceremony was held in Neckartenzlingen, Germany, on July 22. It was also streamed virtually for those who couldn’t be present. Belden Vice Presidents Brian Lieser, Eleazar Esquivel, Andries Boone and Karin van Meurs also attended the ceremony to recognize the hard work of these six ECLPs. After the ceremony was over, we held a toast and exchanged ideas on the terrace of a local restaurant.


We’re all proud of our most recent graduates, and we look forward to supporting them as they start their new career journeys at Belden. Congratulations to these six Belden employees for successfully mastering their challenging assignments and developing valuable business and leadership skills over the past three years!