Through this blog, we will spotlight Otterbein students who are engaging in internships and professional experiences in a variety of industries and geographic locations. We will also share tips and advice on searching for internships and making the most of internship experiences.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Caitlyn (Mattie) Boyd '16- FarmVet

Caitlin (Mattie) Boyd 
Class of 2016
Major: Biology
Minor: Environmental Studies
Hometown: Fairview, TN
Internship Organization: FarmVet
Location: Franklin, TN

Internship Responsibilities: My summer internship was with FarmVet based out of Franklin, TN. FarmVet is an equine pharmaceuticals, supplement and horse care company. Throughout my internship I worked in various departments within the company, one being a sales associate on a trailer that traveled to Virginia and Pennsylvania horse shows. I was required to learn about the products well enough to be able to educate and sell to customers. This was my favorite experience within my FarmVet internship, I was able to travel to places I have never been, meet new people/connections within the equine show circuit and learn about new products. 

What I Learned: The information and knowledge I gained about horse products will benefit me as a horse owner and throughout my horse showing career. Throughout my internship with FarmVet I was exposed to many learning opportunities and experiences that will benefit my future career and I look forward to the opportunities that lie ahead within FarmVet post-graduation. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Sean Brewster '15 -- Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio

Sean Brewster
Class Year: 2015
Major: B.A. Music and Business, concentration in Arts Administration
Minor: Business Administration
Hometown: Norwalk, Ohio
Internship: Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio

Location: Columbus, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities: As part of the Columbus Foundation Summer Fellowship Program, I spent the past 10 weeks working at the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Ohio (RMHC). The main project that I was given for these 10 weeks was to create a Volunteer Stewardship Plan. In essence, I was identifying each and every point in a volunteers ‘lifespan’ that RMHC would send a note of thanks or appreciation. Before my time at RMHC, I had very little experience or knowledge about Volunteer Management.

What I Learned: From managing groups of volunteers from L Brands, Nationwide Insurance and Bath & Body Works to volunteering at the Thirty-One Gifts Conference, I have developed quite an understanding of volunteer management. By working to develop a fully-fledged Volunteer Stewardship Plan, and thus creating materials and processes to support this plan, I have gained an expertise of stewardship practices.

Of all my experiences working in non-profit organizations, I have never experienced such a warm and welcoming community. Every single staff member, volunteer and donor is enveloped by a passion for this House and the families that it serves.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Braeden Sparks '17- U.S Department of Energy, Fluor B&W

Braeden Sparks
Class: 2017
Major(s): Computer Science/ Sociology minor
Hometown: Portsmouth, OH
Internship: U.S Department of Energy, Fluor B&W. SMIDD (Site Maintenance Infrastructure and Deactivation and Demolition) group.
Location: Piketon, OH

Internship Responsibilities: I have helped inventory and enter information for 2,500 parts, some of which were purchased when Goodyear Atomic was still the prime contractor at the Portsmouth site. By cataloging the data into the CostPoint database, parts will be easier to locate when they’re needed on site.  It is estimated that this could save the D&D Project more than $240,000. I also developed a location on site for caged areas and sea lands containers for parts that are needed on site. I then reviewed the Shipping and Receiving Process that took place on site and developed new ways to improve the process of receiving a package on site and making sure it is delivered to the buyer of that item.

What I Learned: During my internship, I learned a great deal of knowledge of how a government facility works and pursing day to day operations. I knew that this internship was a great part of my education and seeing a different side of computer science. This was a great experience to be part of and I learned a lot. This internship gave me better team building skills, working with others, using Microsoft Excel and Google Docs, organizational skills, communication skills and friendships. This opportunity has been a great experience and I will not forget my time here. Overall, this internship is going to be a great asset to my resume and I will take all the things I learned with me to future internships and jobs. 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Sarah Uhlenbrock '15--Harvard School of Public Health

Sarah Uhlenbrock
Class: 2015
Major(s): Allied Health, Religion
Hometown: Cincinnati, OH
Internship: Harvard School of Public Health
Location: Boston, MA

Internship Responsibilities: My month in Boston was spent working at the Harvard School of Public Health within the epidemiology department. Epidemiology is a branch of public health that studies the spread, causation, and prevention of diseases. Epidemiologists constantly work with large sets of data from surveys and conduct research. My research in Boston was focused on prostate cancer, specifically cadmium and prostate specific antigen (PSA).

PSA is a protein that is produced in the prostate and it is used a biomarker in men to detect early signs of prostate cancer. My research group and I asked this question: What is the effect of cadmium on PSA levels? We hypothesized that there would be a positive correlation between the PSA levels in the blood and cadmium which was measured in urine. To find our results we used the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). This is a biannual survey that uses a non-random sample of people to collect a national representative sample. We sorted through this data to find our two variables, PSA and cadmium, and then used R (a coding software to deal with the large amounts of numbers) to create spreadsheets and graphs. Our results were anticlimactic. We found no correlation between PSA levels and cadmium exposure.

What I Learned: Regardless of our null findings, the experience of working in the epidemiology department at HSPH was worth being stuck in the airport for six hours because of a flight cancellation. The experience enhanced my resume, but the opportunity of being in Boston was the best part. I fell in love with the city and I cannot wait to return to make it my home someday.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Eve Zielinski '15 --Safelite Autoglass

Eva Zielinski
Class Year: 2015
Major: Communications
Minor: Public Realtions
Hometown: Pickerington, Ohio
Internship: Safelite Autoglass
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities:  I began my experience as a communication intern for Safelite Autoglass at their corporate headquarters in Columbus, OH. My main task was to write content for our company intranet, newsletter publications and other internal communications. I was already a fair writer but I had to prioritize and effectively manage my time to ensure that I met deadlines and didn’t put anyone else behind schedule. I also had to be flexible and work around other peoples schedules other than my own in order to accomplish the tasks that were given to me. It was a necessary discipline that taught me to roll with change and adjust to becoming a professional young adult.

What I Learned: My experience lasted the entire summer from May through August and I was hired at full time from 9-5 every day. The first aspects of adult professionalism that I learned were to dress professionally and to be on time every day. I would wake up extra early to make the hour commute from Pickerington to Columbus/Dublin and back through rush hour traffic. I became efficient at learning to arrive early before my shift started.

I also had to get over my shyness of talking to people, because I had to interview several associates in person and over the phone to acquire the information I needed to compose a story. I learned to communicate more effectively in writing as well as spoken word with all my colleagues. However, I think the most important qualities I took away from this excellent experience were responsibility and flexibility. I was no longer just a college student writing essays for a grade, I was considered a professional that was part of a large organization that depended on the tasks I was working on.

Monday, October 5, 2015

Jill Keefer Internship Experience

Jill Keefer
Class: 2016
Major(s): Zoo & Conservation Science
Hometown: Chillicothe, OH
Internship: Aquatic Animal Husbandry intern through the WAVE Foundation at the Newport
Location: Newport, Kentucky

Internship Responsibilities: The creature that makes the Newport Aquarium so unique and special is the shark ray. Shark rays are incredibly rare in the wild, and my aquarium was the first one to successfully have them and start a breeding program. They're incredible creatures and I was lucky enough to feed them and help care for them!

What I Learned: My internship was the most incredible experience. I was able to pet penguins, hold a baby sea turtle, feed sharks and sharkrays, release albino alligators, and learn just what all it's like to work inside an aquarium. I learned so many things, and it only fueled my excitement more to join this career field one day! I definitely believe I had one of the coolest internships available. I did and learned so much, I can't wait to share my stories.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Shannon Back '15 - The Dawes Arboretum

Shannon Back
Class year: 2015
Major(s): History and Public Relations
Hometown: Centerville, Ohio
Internship: The Dawes Arboretum
Location: Newark, OH

Internship Responsibilities: During my internship in The Dawes Arboretum history department, I was able to complete multiple projects that helped further my knowledge on history, archiving, and The Dawes Arboretum and Dawes Family. I first started on my largest project, which was checking over and editing many scanned photographs from our archives. After I was finished with this project, I was able to research and begin a Burr Family tree (Mrs. Dawes's side of the family) and gather information on the Burr family and Burr ancestors. Throughout the whole summer I served as a tour guide at the House Museum and gave house tours to visitors, and manned the history center on the grounds. I was also fortunate enough to help with two events. The first event was the Dawes Family Reunion, and the second was the "Tea in Bertie’s Garden". Other projects I worked on included taking pictures of appraised artifacts, documenting shelves of 3D artifacts, and going through old documents on the old cemetery on the grounds. I also went through letters of the family in our archives and documented each one and its subject matter.

What I Learned: My experiences here have definitely taught me how to be a better historian and also a better speaker through my tour guiding! I definitely feel that this has helped prepare me for whatever is in store for my professional future.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Anthony Reinhard '15 - Progressive Insurance

Anthony Reinhard
Class Year: 2015
Major: Actuarial Science
Hometown: Canton, OH
Internship: Progressive Insurance
Location: Mayfield Village, OH

Internship Responsibilities: I had the opportunity to complete a 12-week paid internship at Progressive Insurance, a leading property & casualty insurance company, located 20 minutes from downtown Cleveland. My internship was in the Pricing department of Progressive's Special Lines business area. My department was responsible for maintaining adequate premium rates for all of Progressive's non-auto insurance products across the country. These products included motorcycles (Progressive is the nation's top insurer of motorcycles), boats, RVs, travel trailers, and snowmobiles.One of the major projects I completed during my internship was analyzing the rate adequacy of Progressive's snowmobile policies. Snowmobile is a small book of business that is often treated the same as motorcycle business. My final analysis showed that our overall rates for our snowmobile policies were likely higher than they needed to be. In the future, my department will look to lower our snowmobile rates in larger states in an attempt to undercut the rates of competitors.

What I Learned: I learned about the day-to-day work that is done in Special Lines Pricing and other departments that complete actuarially-justified work. Over the course of my internship, I connected with a variety of professionals and complete meaningful work. I was also very impressed with the unique culture at Progressive. Progressive has one of the world’s largest corporate art collections that decorate each campus. It creates an environment that fosters creativity and inclusion. I concluded my internship with a 10-minute presentation about my summer in front of several hiring managers during my final week. Two weeks after I left, I accepted a full-time position as an Actuarial Analyst that will begin after I graduate.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Jim Waterwash '15 - Community Choice Financial

Jim Waterwash
Class Year: 2015
Major: Business Administration
Hometown: Powell, OH
Internship: Community Choice Financial
Location: Dublin, OH        

Internship Responsibilities: I interned at Community Choice Financial, also known as CheckSmart.  I was the marketing intern in the marketing division. My responsibilities varied and changed frequently due to all the moving parts that marketing for a multi-state, national brand entails. One of my responsibilities was to plan and coordinate grand openings, customer appreciation days, and marketing blitzes.  This included booking entertainment, joining locals Chambers, and communicating with my supervisor to ensure expectations of these events.

In addition, I was responsible for sorting and creating an Excel spreadsheet with names for email blasts to our opt-in customers. I created budgets for each quarter of media buying through Excel. The marketing director had me attend meetings with him, our public relations firm, the Columbus Chamber of Commerce and others.  I was also been tasked to constantly update our contact information of our account executives in radio and TV advertising. Other responsibilities included invoicing, organizing, communicating with the store managers about events, learning how to negotiate and buy advertising on the radio and TV, and providing reports on the quarterly budget.

What I Learned: I learned so much through this internship. I learned about how to budget for advertising and how to decipher good radio and bad radio stations to advertise for our market.  I discovered that marketing relies heavily on knowing exactly who you are trying to target to send the right message.  I even learned many tricks about Excel that will benefit me in future projects and reports. In addition, I learned office etiquette, how to deal with vendors to plan events, and so much more.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Gina Heitkamp '15 - Mayo Clinic

Gina Heitkamp
Class Year: 2015
Major: Nursing
Hometown: Maria Stein, Ohio
Internship: Summer III Nursing Extern at Mayo Clinic
Location: Rochester, Minnesota

Internship Responsibilities: I worked as a Summer III Nursing Extern at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. The ten week program is geared for nursing students entering their senior year of nursing school.  Each extern is assigned to a specific unit in the hospital for the summer and works with different clinical coaches.  I worked on an internal medicine floor and was partnered with four different clinical coaches who facilitated my learning by involving me in the patient care they provided.  As a Summer III Extern, I was able to work side by side with my coach to see what being a nurse really entailed.  I spent my shift with them, working to complete assessments, administer medications, and perform a variety of nursing skills under his or her guidance.  I was able to not only experience the nursing side of patient care, but also how Mayo Clinic really stresses the importance of interdisciplinary teamwork.  I collaborated with the medicine service, social services, dieticians, pharmacists, in addition to other teams to provide holistic patient care. 

What I Learned: I worked with some of the best nurses I have ever met.  They taught me more than just nursing skills, but also how to prioritize, critically think, and see the patient as more than just a diagnosis.  Most importantly, I gained confidence in myself as a nurse.  The patient interactions have been invaluable. It has been an honor to work at the #1 hospital in the nation.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Brooke Jones '16 - Westfield Group Fitness Center

Brooke Jones
Year: 2016
Major: Health Promotion and Fitness
Hometown: Ashland, OH
Internship: Westfield Group Fitness Center
Location: Westfield Center, OH

Internship Responsibilities: My internship was at the Fitness Center for the home office of Westfield Group. As an intern I helped with two programs for the employees called Get Fit and Get Moving. Get Fit was for employees that did not work for the home office in order to get part of their gym membership paid for since they did not have a “free” facility and Get Moving was a program for any employee to get half of their registration fee paid for if they signed up for a walking, running, or biking event. I also helped create two bulletin boards to help guide the employees in the fitness center. The first bulletin had tips to help their form on the different cardio machines and pictures that showed right from wrong. The second bulletin was a group fitness incentive that encouraged the employees to attend more group fitness classes by handing out tickets. The tickets were hung up on the bulletin board each week and the ticket number that was drawn would win the prize for that week.

There was not personal training for the employees but other aspects of being a trainer were involved to help them. I did fitness assessments for any employee that signed up to become a member of the fitness center and asked for one. The assessment covered height, weight, body fat percentage, blood pressure, resting heart rate, girth measurements, muscle endurance, muscle strength, and flexibility. On top of the assessment the employees had the opportunity to get a personalized workout made just for them on software called ExercisePro. It had a picture and detailed instructions of each workout that I gave them for what they wanted to get out of their program. I enjoyed this part because each employee was different and I got to learn more about them individually and what their goals were!

Monday, August 24, 2015

Rebecca Carter '15- ODOT: Office of Environmental Science, Ecological Permits Section

Rebecca Carter
Class Year: 2015
Major(s): Environmental Science BS, Art w/Concentration in Communication Design
Hometown: Hilliard, Ohio
Internship: Ohio Department of Transportation: Office of Environmental Science, Ecological Permits Section

Internship Responsibilities:  As a part of the Office of Environmental Science for the Ohio Department of Transportation I was a member of a team of many experienced environmental specialists. The Department of Transportation is in charge of maintaining and expanding the State’s vast network of roads.  All ODOT projects undergo environmental evaluation to determine the impacts of their construction and operation with many laws and regulations. 

In the Eco section we are in charge of evaluating each project site to determining the environmental impacts and then coordinate with various state and federal agencies (such as the OEPA, ODNR, USFWS, and USACE) to ensure permit compliance or adequate mitigation.  All projects must submit an Ecological Survey Report (ESR) to the Office for review.   I was a part of this reviewing the ESRs that were submitted. Besides permit review I got to be involved in field reviews and surveys.  Sometimes projects have impacts that need mitigation and it is our job to find suitable sites. Some mitigation examples include: creation of new wetlands, improvements on existing wetlands, restoration of streams, and creation of bat habitats.  These sites require us to travel across the state and assess the sites in person. 

What I Learned: Most times we would be showing the USACE or OEPA how the site was preforming and meeting the permit standards. We would trek through the wetland/stream/forest in boots and waders looking at the quality of the site and how it was functioning.  Other times I was able to go into a stream and do a mussel recon to see if there would be a potential mussel community that would be affected by a project.  This internship has provided me with a hands-on experience working with experts in the field I am studying. 

Monday, April 27, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part Six: The End

Well after 14 weeks, 60 workdays, and 427 hours in the office (super random number, but I kept track) I have successfully completed my full-time internship! And what an amazing experience it’s been! Now that it’s over, I can look back, reflect on the experience as a whole, and really assess how much I’ve learned and grown this semester.

Reading through my daily journal, it’s hard to imagine how slowly the first few weeks went by! I felt incredibly overwhelmed and very determined to prove myself to my superiors. In stark contrast, these past few weeks flew by so quickly. I was much more comfortable with my role in the organization and had become very friendly with my colleagues and supervisors. The transformation from week one to week fourteen was just amazing!

This last week was one of my favorite weeks at my internship. My colleagues threw me a going away barbecue outside and it was so much fun! Everyone showed up and brought food (even the CEO) and we had a great time! I could really tell that they appreciated all the work I had done throughout the semester (look at the awesome going-away present one of them painted for me!) Throughout the time I was there, they had come to really value me as a person and an employee in the organization. In an attempt to keep me at the Fine Arts Center, they even offered me a part-time job at the front desk for the summer because they didn’t want to see me go. After expressing to them that I may need a job that would enable me to make more money this summer, they talked with management and said that if I stay over the summer, it could possibly lead to a full-time job in the fall!

As exciting as it was to be potentially offered a full-time job, I asked if I could take some time to really think about it before making a decision. As much fun as it’s been to be out in Colorado and working at the Fine Arts Center, I’m not quite sure it’s the first career move I want to make post-graduation. But who knows – maybe my next step will be working at the Fine Arts Center until I figure everything out (and actually making money – who’d have thought?!)

Overall, I feel that this experience has really given me the self –confidence I needed to attack the work force with all the determination I have. I learned that even though I didn’t know everything when I started (and still don’t, now that I’m leaving), because I went about my work with a positive attitude and a willingness to learn, things mostly worked out in my favor. Everyone in the office (even people I barely spoke to) noticed my positive energy and willingness to work and many said that they would miss my smiling face every day! It took me leaving to realize that even when I didn’t think I was being noticed or recognized, I was always being appreciated – even by the people who didn’t directly work with me.

This experience has really helped me feel prepared to move on from the role of student to an active member of the workforce. I am so thankful to Otterbein for requiring me to participate in an internship – and I’m so proud of myself for going all the way out to Colorado to do it! Throughout these past 14 weeks, I’ve learned so much about myself and even though my internship didn’t exactly line up with what I want to do as a career, I am confident that I have learned skills that will carry over into whatever career I chose to pursue.

So to any future interns reading this, I implore you to not just think about how much an internship pays you, or how close it is to Otterbein or your hometown, but to think about the experience as a whole! Open yourself up to learn as much as you can – about work, but also about yourself! You can only truly grow as a person when you’re outside of your comfort zone.

Thanks to everyone who kept with me on this incredible journey, and thanks to the Center for Career and Professional Development for allowing me to be a guest blogger and give my honest (sometimes too honest) opinion of my internship experience. I can’t wait to return to Otterbein next week for graduation!

As always thanks so much for reading, it’s been a real pleasure!

Dillon Cordray

Music and Business ’15

Monday, April 20, 2015

Adam Piccin '16 - Bricker & Eckler LLP

Adam Piccin
Class Year: 2016
Major: Public Relations, Health Communications
Hometown: Lewis Center, Ohio
Internship: Bricker & Eckler LLP
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities: I was a Public Relations and Marketing Intern at Bricker & Eckler LLP for eight months starting in the spring of 2014.  Bricker & Eckler is one of Ohio’s leading law firms and has more than 140 attorneys in four offices located in Columbus, Cleveland, Cincinnati-Dayton and Marietta.  As an intern in the Practice Development Department, I executed PR and marketing strategies for the law firm, which included writing blogs, press releases, business letters, articles and internal communication copy. I performed extensive research, created marketing lists and regularly updated Bricker’s website.

What I Learned: I have gained experience in HTML coding, copyediting, fixing broken links, utilizing mass email marketing services, marketing database management and more. My favorite part of the internship was my supervisors treating me like an invaluable member of the team and trusted me with responsibilities that did not consist of typical administrative work. The assignments given to me from the other eight members of the department made for incredible learning experiences as well as portfolio samples. In addition, I found it very cool that I was featured on the company’s Intranet floor plan and that I had my own phone number.

I learned to take chances and try new things because you never know what you like until you try it. I am grateful for the incredible internship I had at Bricker & Eckler and would recommend the firm’s internship program without reservation to other students studying public relations, marketing or communications.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Jessica Moore '16, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, DEAMS Program

Jessica Moore
Class Year: 2016
Major: Sociology with concentrations in Criminology, Family & Fraud
Hometown: New Carlisle, Ohio
Internship: Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, DEAMS Program
Location: Fairborn, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities: This summer I had the pleasure of working as a summer intern for the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in the Defense Enterprise and Account Managing Systems (DEAMS) program. I joined the Junior Force Council where I was in charge of recruiting volunteers and ensuring everything ran smoothly for our big event, the Symposium, at the end of the summer.  This annual event is where high ranking individuals come and speak about the event theme, which for this year was Career and Connections. I was in also charge of making welcome packets, keeping supplies stocked and coordinating several fundraisers.

What I Learned: Here I learned about the financial aspects of business and how people with various backgrounds and skills can work together as a cohesive whole to accomplish anything. Through this opportunity, I learned more than I ever thought I would.
I was very lucky in that I was placed in an office where I could learn and have fun doing it. Overall I had a fantastic experience and I would love to work there again in the future.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part 6: Finding Motivation

Three weeks left of my internship and I honestly can't believe it's almost over! It has been a pretty amazing 11 weeks here in Colorado Springs, but it has also been an incredibly long 11 weeks. At this point, I am absolutely ready to come home, graduate, and move on from the life of an unpaid intern! That being said, as I enter the home stretch, I can't help but feel a little unmotivated at times. This past week, I had a moment where I realized that although it is almost done, I still have almost a month of work left before I can hang up the towel on this internship. So the question is, how do I find the motivation I need to finish strong?

Here are a few things that will hopefully help me (and anyone else doing a semester-long internship) stay motivated:

1. Remember what it was like during week one. Week one of my internship was the time where I was bound and determined to prove myself. I accomplished all the tasks my supervisors set before me quickly and efficiently and talked with them in a very professional manner. Since then, things have changed dramatically. I've become comfortable in my work environment and don't constantly feel the need to prove myself. My superiors know that I am a hard worker and we've become friends - often talking to each other in a friendly and joking manner. Although this is inevitable, it also can lead to me being a bit lazy. In order to continue strong, I need to remember how I worked the first few weeks when I was still trying to prove myself and remember the motivation I had then!

2. Ask yourself how you want your co-workers and supervisors to remember you. This past week, after having a good laugh with my supervisor, I thought to myself "when this is over, do you want to be remembered as the good-natured, fun intern who made your supervisor laugh occasionally? Or do you want to be remembered as the intern who got stuff done quickly and tackled projects head-on while also maintaining a fun, positive attitude?" Sure, I will most-likely get a great recommendation out of the internship regardless of how I work these last few weeks, but I would rather the good recommendation be due to my consistent work ethic rather than my social skills.

3. Make weekly goals. This has helped me from the beginning of my internship, but it's important not to forget. When a task or project is assigned to me, it's important not to just let it sit by the wayside until I feel like doing it. Some projects I get done quickly because I like them, and others I avoid because they aren't fun (normally involving spreadsheets) - but if I set a goal to finish it by a certain date, then I feel more pressure to get it done! The best feeling on a Friday afternoon is to look at a weekly to-do list and see that everything on it is crossed off - even the boring tasks!

This blog post topic reminded me of a tip I read at the beginning of my internship. It said something along the lines of "pace yourself throughout - don't jump in too eagerly in the beginning only to be burnt out by the end." At the time, I was bound and determined to jump in eagerly and prove myself, but after eleven weeks, I do feel pretty burnt out! Following these tips and realizing that the internship is quickly coming to an end will hopefully enable me to finish strong and continue to prove to my superiors that I am a willing and hard-working individual.

As always, thanks for reading! Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '11

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Michael Mackessy '15, Diamond Hill Capital Management

Mike pictured with Otterbein alumna,
Tammi Gourley, Director - Employee Relations.
Michael Mackessy
Class Year: 2015
Major: Accounting
Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
Internship: Diamond Hill Capital Management
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Internship Responsibilities: My summer internship with Diamond Hill Capital Management was one of the most gratifying experiences of my life thus far. Over the course of my experience, I became familiar with all of the different occupational facets of a capital management company from the sales team to the portfolio managers and everything in between.  I worked closely with the accounting team during my time at Diamond Hill and assisted them in performing a few day to day tasks as well as a few projects of my own. 

While at Diamond Hill, I assisted in performing a fixed asset inventory review of all furniture and equipment at the Company’s two locations.  I documented all business processes that are performed by the accounting team on a daily, monthly, or quarterly basis.  I compiled data to assist with preliminary analysis of potential out of state tax exposure resulting from employees traveling out of state frequently.  I also participated in a social media analysis with the entire intern class which we presented to (20-25) employees including the entire Senior Management Team.

What I Learned: My internship at Diamond Hill was an exceptional experience. It not only gave me a sense of transparency into the mutual fund business and the financial services industry, but it also gave me a better perception of the appropriate career path for me to take after I graduate from Otterbein University. I gained a great deal of insight into the field of accounting as well as the asset management industry.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part Five: Networking

Well its hard to believe, but my internship is more than halfway over! The time has flown by and I can't imagine that in six weeks, I'll be graduating from college! Although I am incredibly anxious about life after graduation, one thing I am grateful for is the amount of people I have networked with throughout my college experience - especially during this internship!

As everyone knows, getting a job often isn't just about what you know, it's also about who you know. Interning for a business or organization is an incredible way to expand your personal network and make connections that will hopefully be useful as you embark on a career path of your own. Throughout my internship, I have made a conscious effort to reach out to my supervisors and co-workers in order to broaden my network and create personal connections that will hopefully last a lifetime.

When I think of networking, I get a little intimidated at the idea. The word evokes a feeling of professionalism and makes me think of an interview involving intellectual questions and a business-like demeanor - but that's not always what it is. Networking can be as simple as a casual lunch with a colleague or supervisor where you learn about their professional background and they learn about your future goals and aspirations. Throughout my experience at the Fine Arts Center, I have had many moments where I went to lunch with a supervisor or even fellow intern and things turned into a networking opportunity. For instance, I told our Creative Director during lunch that I used to work at a summer camp and would love to find something in Colorado that was similar. Knowing that I'm a music major, she immediately said "Well, I actually know someone at the Conservatory who I could hook you up with to discuss their summer music programs if you're interested!" Who would have guessed that our graphic designer would have connections at the music conservatory and then offer to set up a lunch to introduce me?

Networking can also be as simple as becoming connected on LinkedIn or other social media websites! This past Friday, I noticed that I hadn't connected with any of my colleagues from the Fine Arts Center on LinkedIn and we had a fun time looking at each others profiles and laughing at each others pictures (they claimed that I look like a baby in my picture, which is fair since it was taken two years ago and displays my pre-bearded baby face... I'll have to change that before I start job hunting!)

Anyways, networking is hugely important, especially for us college folk who need all the help we can get to find jobs after graduation! Always be thinking of how important connections are whether you're in a class at Otterbein or an internship in Colorado, because the world is a small place and having good connections is essential!

Well, that's my spill on networking! Thanks so much for reading, and because I don't like a post without pictures, here is a picture of the view from the park today! Pretty great!

Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '15

Monday, March 16, 2015

Jonathan Hill '15 - Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority

Class Year: 2015
Major: Public Relations and Music & Business
Hometown: Wadsworth, Ohio
Internship organization: Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Corporate Headquarters - 
Reagan National Airport (DCA)
Location: Washington, D.C. 

Internship Responsibilities: My duties consisted of writing internal communications content for 1,500 employees, facilitating media relations calls and overall media outreach, assisting with airline events such as the inaugural Air China and Frontier Airlines launches at Dulles International Airport, creating media advisories and press releases, photographing all airport events both internal and external, creating and posting social media content, creating a publicity plan for MWAA's Summer Jazz Series, presenting a summer-wide research project on social media dashboards and creating video content published on public and internal airport monitors.

What I Learned: The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority gave this aviation nerd the most professional and exhilarating experience of a lifetime. From experiencing runway checks and air traffic tours, to taking media calls with The Washington Post and NBC; I was completely engulfed in every communications function this quasi-government/corporate organization has to offer. This organization oversees over 1,500 employees, two airports that each occupies over 20 million passengers a year, the 14 mile Dulles Toll Road and Washington, D.C.'s Silver Line Metro project. I was placed in the main Communications Office that manages every aspect of the organization as previously stated. The overarching theme of this summer in regards to what I've learned is simply finding my passion to pursue aviation based communications opportunities post-graduation.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part 4: Making Friends in a New City

Well I have completed five weeks out of my 15 week internship and can't believe that I'm already one-third of the way done! I'm getting very settled into my work environment and the internship is coming along really well! Since I've already talked about the actual internship in depth, I thought that for my next blog post I'd talk a bit about how I'm spending my time outside of my internship.
Garden of the Gods

In case you didn't know, I came out to Colorado Springs knowing only my 60 year-old aunt who I live with. She's awesome, but I have no one my own age to do things with. So, for the first few weeks I was kind of a loner. I would get home from work and go for a walk around the neighborhood. I found an awesome park right down the street and went to Garden of the Gods, a beautiful park that's really close and just had fun exploring by myself. But after a month I was dying to have some fun experiences with fellow human beings! So I decided to turn to the people I work with.

Now my co-workers are mostly 35-45 year olds with children who have no intention of hanging out with a 21-year-old intern on their nights and weekends. But two weekends ago, I was asked if I would walk in a parade to promote the Fine Arts Center's new musical, Reefer Madness. Of course, I said yes and on Valentines Day, I joined a few of my co-workers and walked in the parade. It was a Mardi Gras themed parade, so we all dressed in green for the show and threw beads at people and handed out fliers and it was a blast! I mean how many people get to do stuff like that on their internship?! 

My co-worker, Kim, and I at the parade
After the parade, my boss had said that we were all invited to a party back at his house (a beautiful house up in the mountains) but everyone who I worked with started to leave! They were saying things like " I have to get back to the kids" and "my husband is waiting for me" blah blah blah. So I started to think, "Well I'm not going to go to a party where I don't know anyone!" But then I thought "What else do I have to do today? I might as well stay out and have some fun!" So I ended up going to his house for the party and I'm so glad I did! I chatted with the CEO of the Fine Arts Center, who I rarely see in the office, but had a great conversation with. I met the mayor of Manitou Springs (the city where my boss lives) and I sang with some local musicians who were sitting around in the living room having a jam session! It was so much fun, and I was so incredibly happy that I had stayed, even though I knew probably three people to begin with!

Similarly, this past Friday, I decided to go out with a few co-workers to see my boss in a play that he was starring in. I got there super early and looked like a weirdo with no friends, but again I'm so glad I went because we had a great time! 

So the morale of the story is that although coming home from work every night, eating dinner and watching Netflix alone before bed sounds wonderful and easy, it's not really making the most of my time here. Going out and actually experiencing things with people is a much better way to spend my time! Even though it's not easy to find people to do things with, take a chance and really put yourself out there and get to know the people that you can, because that's what being in a new place is all about! You won't meet anyone new sitting at home alone watching Netflix!

And with that said, I'm going to watch an episode on Netflix before bed! Thanks so much for reading! Also, I said in my last post that the weather here was awesome, but I seemed to have jinxed myself because this weekend it snowed about a foot and is now in the negative temperatures - not fun! I feel like I'm back in Ohio! 

Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '15

Monday, February 16, 2015

Grace Lenehan '15--SiriusXM Radio, The Highway

Name: Grace Lenehan
Class: 2015
Major: Journalism and Media Communications
Hometown: Mansfield, OH
Internship: SiriusXM Radio The Highway
Location: Nashville, TN

Internship Responsibilities: One of my biggest responsibilities was gathering and submitting show prep of topics they could talk about each day. I also contributed to show ideas during the hours of the live show. Whenever an artist or guest came in for an interview or performance, I was the person in charge of writing a guest sheet of information for the interview. I was also in charge of managing listeners and guests in the studio. I also had the chance to do a few artist interviews, and brush up on my editing skills for those. 

What I Learned: My internship this past summer in Nashville was an experience that I wouldn't have traded for the world. I was able to get a taste of exactly what I want to do in my dream city.  I was the Morning Show Intern for SiriusXM's channel, The Highway. I got to work with the host, Storme Warren, and the producer, Brittany Goudie on the morning show. It was an unbelievable experience. I got to watch interviews with high profile artists every week, and I learned so much about the radio and music industry from just being in that environment. 

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Part 3: Communicating in the Workplace

I have successfully completed my third week of internship and am getting nice and settled into my new work environment. I'm also becoming surprisingly accustomed to the eight-hour work day.... well almost. One thing I am still adjusting to, however, is communicating with my co-workers in the office.
My cluttered desk

My office, pictured below, is made up of four desks, one in each corner, with no cubicle walls or anything - just wide open space. This creates lots of opportunity for interaction between the three people I share an office with: the PR and Media Relations Director, the Marketing and Communications Director, and the Creative Director. They are all incredibly nice people to work with and I'm very lucky to get along with all of them as successfully as I do. That being said, they are three completely different people who communicate in completely different ways.

The Media Relations Director, for example, gives me mostly creative tasks to work on like editing videos and crafting social media posts. He takes a pretty hands-off approach of directing me, which allows me to be creative and find my own way of doing things; however, it can also make me feel like I am in way over my head. The Marketing Director, on the other hand, is the complete opposite. Whenever she delegates a task to me, she gives me an ample amount of instruction. Most of the tasks usually utilize Excel spreadsheets and are not nearly as creative, which allows for more structure and direction. The Creative Director is very used to doing things on her own, and often forgets that I am there to help in any way I can. I often have to remind her that I can do things like run to pick up posters or cut out signs and other promotional media. So with her, it's hard for me to know what she needs done because she is very quiet and is used to getting things done by herself.

The office
Navigating these three varying communicative styles is a real challenge and something that I am grateful to experience. In the workplace, you have to collaborate with people of all types who have various ways of communicating. Being able to identify how the people around me communicate is key in making this internship the most it can be. After three weeks of observing them, I now know to ask the Media Relations Director a lot of questions when he gives me a project to work on, so I have a better sense of direction and feel more structured. I also know to ask the Creative Director if she would like help with anything, because she is not one to ask unless I offer. Picking up on how those around me communicate is a valuable skill that I am definitely glad to be learning through this internship experience! And with twelve more weeks to go, I'm sure the communication between the four of us will get better and better!

Anyways, thanks for reading! Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '15

P.S. The weather here has been absolutely amazing! It was 70 degrees and sunny all weekend - it feels like summer! I've been exploring this beautiful state and realizing how lucky I am to be able to intern out here!... But more on that next week! See you then!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Alanna Schutlz '15 -- Orthopedic One

Name: Alanna Schultz
Class Year: 2015
Major: Allied Health
Internship Site: Orthopedic One

What I Learned:
Upon finishing my internship for Allied Health I have reflected a lot about the journey that the semester had taken me on. Not only did I learn an abundant amount of information outside the classroom through this internship, but also got to experience 125 hours in a real life PT headquarters. Not many people get to be enrolled in a school that fosters this type of growth outside of the classroom. Shadowing for an extended period of time allowed me to ponder how blessed I am to be a part of an amazing academic institution. An institution that cares for the overall well-being of the student and wants them to grow in every single area of their life.

I grew throughout the course of my internship in a lot of different areas. For example, I used to be pretty intimidated by adults. I am comfortable being around peers but for some reason I was afraid I would lose all my knowledge if a therapist asked me a question about something I had learned in the classroom. I was so scared to give a wrong answer. By the end of my internship, I felt so comfortable around all the therapists and definitely felt that I could be my goofy self around older, more experienced professionals and they would still respect me.

I look at my internship as this hill that I had to climb. In the beginning it was hard but I had to keep climbing up that hill until I reached the top and was able to reach the point where I was comfortable around everyone. Once I hit that point, my internship became a place where I could learn and have some fun at the same time, which is my favorite combination. Even though sometimes it was hard interning at Orthopedic One knowing that this profession isn’t right for me, it challenged me use it as a learning experience.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Cordray in Colorado, Post 2: First Week of Internship

I survived my first week of internship! Hooray! And even though it was only a four-day week, it seemed like the longest week of my life! Along with meeting about a thousand people, many of whom have names I can't remember, I was also overwhelmed with just how long a full-time internship is! Eight hours is a long time! A few things I learned from my first week are:

1. Always repeat peoples name when you are introduced to them, which is easier said than done. On my first day, I was too nervous about myself and how I was being perceived that I didn't even pay attention to who I was meeting. It took the rest of the week to really pick up on everyones names (and I still only know about 7 for sure). The trick was to repeat their name over and over in my head after I heard it mentioned. I also tried to say their name aloud after meeting them. It mostly worked, although I did call someone in my office Alex before finding out her name was actually Kim. I'm still not sure how I screwed that up, but it was bound to happen!

2. Constantly say yes to any task that you are asked. Throughout the week, I got to do some really cool things, like shoot a video for the Member of the Month story and take selfies of myself on "Museum Selfie Day" (who knew that was a thing?) to post on social media; but I also did some things that weren't that cool, like creating Excel sheets and running errands all over town. The thing is, since I said yes to any task that was thrown my way and showed enthusiasm about it, I could tell my superiors loved it. Not only did I complete the tasks, but I completed them efficiently with a smile on my face. By the end of the week, the people around me seemed to be very impressed with my positive attitude and willingness to work.

3. Be ready to go outside of your comfort zone. There were many times this week when I felt I was in way over my head. In those moments, I had to just go for it and put myself out there. Even though I was somewhat uncomfortable, I survived and grew from the experience - and in those moments, that's all you can do!

Overall, it was a very interesting first week. I really enjoy the people I work with, they're very nice and incredibly supportive. The organization also seems like a really cool place to spend the next few months! I hope that I will continue to be challenged every day and learn new things. And hopefully I will get used to working 9 to 5 every day, although I highly doubt that!

Thanks so much for reading! Until next time!

Dillon Cordray
Music and Business '15