Internships: The ins and outs


Yuan Feng Chao
Yuan Feng Chao addresses the audience as fellow panelists Tyler Kluempke, left, and Keenan Seguancia listen during the Students Speak Out event on Jan. 27.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and come up with at least one to ask every day.

Find a mentor.

Anticipate interview questions and practice answering them.

Research the company well in advance.

Lose your ego and be ready to learn from everyone in the company.

Develop your communication skills, both the formal and informal ones.

Understand that you’ll likely be asked to do at least some amount of grunt work.

Those were among the internship lessons passed along Jan. 27 by an eight-member panel during Students Speak Out. The Career Success Center organized the event, the first of its kind, and the near-capacity audience of about 50 in the Robert Family Events Room included a mix of majors and grade levels ranging from freshmen to MBA candidates.

Senior panelist Keenan Seguancia praised the first-year students for taking the initiative to learn about internships so early in their college careers and wished he had done the same thing. Seguancia, a business information systems/accounting major, interned with Nike in summer 2014.

In seeking out internships, Seguancia emphasized using the Career Success Center – “They search for opportunities for us day in and day out,” he said – and to research companies to see if their core values and mission statement align with those of the prospective intern. He also stressed the value of joining clubs on campus both for the resume-building and networking value.

Other panelists’ internship firms included Neil Kelly, Daimler Trucks North America, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Naked Wines, Mutual of Enumclaw, Olah Inc. and Robert W. Baird & Co.

Tiga Evans, a sophomore majoring in merchandising management and sustainability, spoke of being ready for whatever questions the interviewers might ask, including in her case, “Why do you want to work for this company?” and even “What is your favorite movie?”

Taylor Wobig, a senior in interior design, urged students not to exaggerate their skills when interviewing, and she also offered a networking tip: When you receive someone’s business card, write down additional information about the person on the back of the card for future reference.

Students Speak Out audience.
About 50 students of varying majors and class levels attended.

And Hannah Taylor, a senior in finance, reminded the students that while internships provide for a variety of interesting and challenging responsibilities, they’re not all glamorous ones.

“Know you might be doing grunt work at the beginning,” she said. “It’s what you’re there for.”

For more information about internships, visit the Career Success Center, Austin Hall 102, and also like the center on Facebook,


Professional development and your brand


Gene Young.
Gene Young.

Ask College of Business students of any major about faculty members who have had a particular impact on them, and the response is likely to include instructor Gene Young.

Young, a former engineer and manager at Hewlett-Packard, created the course he teaches: BA 353. The course title is Professional Development, and Young explains that his class has two primary objectives: “To pop the bubble of what school is versus what happens in the workplace, and to prepare them to give killer interviews.”

“It matters if you’re late,” Young says. “If your boss gives you a task and a deadline and you don’t get it done, you can’t just say ‘I forgot.’ There are no do-overs.”

Being a topnotch interviewee, he says, is all about making a genuine connection with the interviewers and having a story about yourself to tell, and telling it in a confident, coherent manner that includes being able to give examples to back up what you claim your abilities are.

Young explains that hiring decisions, like purchasing decisions, are emotional – you want to hire a particular candidate, or buy a particular car, and then your mind goes to work trying to find logical reasons to justify the desire.

That’s why building an authentic connection with interviewers is so important.

For more information, drop Young an email – he’ll appreciate your initiative – or better yet, enroll in his course.

Use LinkedIn to your networking advantage

LinkedIn workshop.
Justin Leuck and Carolyn Hoard listen to Career Success Center advisor Tamara Mitchell talk about networking.

Look and sound like a professional.

Ask to be endorsed.

Don’t embellish your capabilities, or worse, make things up.

Don’t include personal information in your profile that you don’t want prospective employers to know about.

Take the time to research groups and then join the ones that seem the most valuable.

These were all among the lessons Wednesday afternoon as career advisor Tamara Mitchell conducted a student workshop in the College of Business’ Career Success Center on how to use LinkedIn, a social networking site aimed at career building.

Mitchell said data from the U.S. Department of Labor show that 75 percent of all jobs in this country are obtained through some form of networking, highlighting the importance of using every type of available tool for making connections with prospective employers.

LinkedIn gives users the opportunity to network with vast numbers of professionals in their field and related ones, provides excellent job search and company research capabilities, and perhaps best of all, it allows organizations to actively and efficiently hunt for job-seekers as they try to fill openings.

“People are going to search for you,” Mitchell said. “You might as well make it easy on them.”

Workshops are scheduled for 3 p.m. at the CSC two of the next three Wednesdays as well. On Jan. 21, the topic is “How to be competitive in the job market.” On Feb. 4, students will learn more about networking skills.

For more information on the Career Success Center and its workshops, visit or drop by the CSC, Austin Hall 102.

Tamara Mitchell
Mitchell explains the best ways to use alumni connections in your job search.


Ten steps toward the right career path

Bart Cleveland
Bart Cleveland has developed branding for a broad range of companies.

Fall term is a good time to begin thinking about a summer internship and researching what needs to be done to be competitive. One way to do that is to attend presentations by professionals.

During most weeks of the term, the Career Success Center offers the opportunity to meet with professionals, learn about their industry and get tips about how to prepare for internship and job searches.


This fall, Bart Cleveland was one of the first professionals to meet with students in Austin Hall’s Stirek Auditorium. Throughout his career, Cleveland has developed branding for a broad range of brands including Coca-Cola, The Ritz-Carlton and CNN. As the founder of Job Propulsion Lab, he now helps young professionals navigate marketing and advertising careers more successfully.

In a room full of College of Business students, including design, entrepreneurship, marketing and management majors, Cleveland talked about the Ten Steps to the Right Advertising or Digital Careers.

Drawing from his award-winning career as a creative director and through his success mentoring dozens of young professionals and guiding them to careers at top-tier agencies like Wieden+Kennedy, Goodby Silverstein and Mother NY, Cleveland developed the following 10 steps:

Bart Cleveland delivers his presentation.
Cleveland told the students in the audience at Austin Hall’s Stirek Auditorium to become their own brand.
  1. Get help.
  2. Plot your course.
  3. Build the right portfolio.
  4. Market yourself.
  5. Become a brand
  6. Stalk. Quietly.
  7. Talk. Loudly.
  8. Look like a pro.
  9. Act like a pro.
  10. Don’t blow the interview.

For the complete presentation, you can see his presentation slides via slideshare: Ten Steps to the Right Advertising or Digital Careers.