Here We Do: Students of Internship Plus (WQ22)

We know that not every student can afford to take an unpaid internship, which influenced our decision to establish the Internship Plus Program. This program awards up to $2,500 in financial assistance to students who have an unpaid internship opportunity and demonstrate financial need. Through this program, many students, like the ones below, have been able to gain important experience in their field of interest. Hear about it from them:

Haley Colegate interned at Arts of Life

My experience as an intern at Arts of Life consisted primarily of socializing with and assisting the artists in studio, as well as teaching weekly art history talks for virtual programming.

Choosing my favorite aspect of my internship is incredibly difficult, though I would have to say that forming relationships with the artists was definitely the most rewarding! For instance, one of the artists, Susan, sang to me a song that she had written about me, which brought a huge smile to my face. I have learned so much about each of their families, their passions, their pets—really anything that they wanted to share with me, I was happy to listen.

However, it was also hard at times. Sometimes artists would share very sensitive and upsetting events from their past with me. On one hand, I felt honored that they entrusted me with such information. However, I couldn’t help but be saddened by what I was told. When these sorts of topics came up, it helped test my skills with trauma responses and how to provide a safe place for artists to share.

As someone who is on track to become a therapist with a specialty in art, this internship at Arts of Life was a perfect fit for me.

I got to see first-hand how the creative process builds relationships, encourages independence, and provides a sense of fulfillment in these artists.

My experiences there also helped me to talk to other facilitators who worked there, many of whom are artists themselves. Meeting new people with similar interests/ career goals as myself is always beneficial.

In terms of advice, I would first recommend only interning at a place that you feel truly passionate about. If you don’t enjoy the work, the value of your experience greatly diminishes. Fortunately, Arts of Life combined two of my passions, which are special needs advocacy and art!

Without my Internship Plus award, I would have had a much more difficult time getting to and from my internship. Arts of Life is located on the west side of town and, without a car, was pretty hard to access by public transit. I am so grateful that I was chosen as a recipient, and I hope that this award will continue for others in the future!

Kendrick Bryant interned for RUN Sports

For my internship, I worked remote from home for a company in New York called RUN Sports. My official role working in the company was a mobile game developer/software engineer, and my work mostly focused on being the programmer for a mobile game.

Some of my responsibilities were handling the user interface, gameplay, and animations. What I enjoyed most about my internship were the people I got the opportunity to work with within the company. Everyone was very dedicated, enthusiastic about the project and remained motivated while working on the project to the end.

Some of my biggest takeaways from this internship were time management. During my internship, me and my group created meetings separate from our boss just so we could stay organized, and we created deadlines for ourselves to make sure we had extra development time. Everyone made sure that we accomplished our tasks ahead of time and this allowed us to have a very smooth development process.

This internship helped me get closer to achieving my career goals as it gave me more experience within the industry, more experience working with other people, and new tools to help me progress in my field.

My advice to other students would be, if you’re searching for an internship, find a project that you’re sure that you’re going to be passionate about. A lot of people get an internship, but then lose their motivation and get burnt out. If you find something that you’re passionate about, there will be less chances of you getting burnt out and bored of the project.

Being an Internship Plus award recipient impacted me positively as my internship was unpaid and required a lot of time and energy which would’ve gone into my part-time job. Receiving this award allowed me to focus more on my internship, my education and my career.

Malena Petronijevic interned at FashionBar Chicago

My internship at FashionBar Chicago in the Water Tower Place has given me the opportunity the gain a better understanding of the technical work a company needs to function efficiently. Not only did I get a finer idea of my management style, but also what I value in a work environment.

I engaged in many different parts of a business including marketing, finance, and management. Over the past few weeks I have been able to book designers for our upcoming April and October fashion shows, access and post on our TikTok and Instagram accounts, and manage mass communication emails. One of the most important and enjoyable learning lessons has been gaining a better understanding of entrepreneurial perspectives and how to eventually build something of my own.

Tony Long, my supervisor and the CEO, has structured all lessons with a common theme of applicability outside of FashionBar Chicago, which I have genuinely appreciated. My biggest takeaway in this internship has been learning about applicable work knowledge. Whether that was email etiquette, developing professional relationships, or setting boundaries, being able to learn about these rules in a work environment was very insightful.

I have also become very proud of my growing confidence inside and outside of the business. FashionBar Chicago, as a business administration major, has allowed me to reflect on what I would and would not want to apply in my management style. I hope that I can continue to explore alternative work environments but now know I work well in smaller teams.

My biggest advice for students seeking internships is to build connections with your business as best as possible. I had the opportunity to volunteer for Chicago Fashion Week back in October and because of my attentiveness then, was able to intern for them! As I continue to grow and constantly express my eagerness to learn, I have even had discussions with my supervisor regarding a potential job offer.

Do not feel afraid to ask questions. Your willingness to learn the industry will be very noticeable and influential. In regards to the Internship Plus award, the award has significantly impacted my financial stability this quarter. In December, prior to the internship, I broke my ankle in a mall shooting by falling down the escalators. Regaining my physical strength while working at an internship for free has been a unique experience! Being able to leave my part-time job was an easier experience with the award. Additionally, receiving the award was an immense honor considering my grade level and experience.

Anonda Tyler interned at Lincoln Park Preschool

My name is Anonda Tyler, better known as Nonie, and to the students I observed and taught Ms. Nonie. On Tuesdays and Thursdays , the school that I did my fieldwork hours at was at the Lincoln Park Preschool.

The school is smack in one of the busy places in the city and is a private school. This school is a dream location to me because it is right across the street from the Lincoln Park Zoo, where we always went to walk when we took the children outside for fresh air. The zoo was perfect to share intimate and angelic experiences that helped me build bonds with students more closely.

The days where I went to visit were during the school day, and typically their hours for school are 9 to 3 o’clock, where they take naps at 1pm, then wait for pick up at 2pm. I stayed from 7 o’clock till 12pm on most days and managed to get over 17 field hours.

The grade I was working with were preschoolers, who were called the 3s and 4s group. I enjoyed most visiting the zoo, and this internship allowed me to appreciate the art of play in teaching and why it is important to include multiple mediums with fine motor skills and gross motor skills activities.

This award impacted me in a good way financially, because it is very hard for my family and I to pay tuition, so it alleviated a lot of stress with worrying about proceeding in this field that I am passionate about due to not always having the resources to support that dream.

In Case You Missed It: Business Not as Usual Event

At the “Business Not As Usual” event May 12, the BEC community welcomed four of our great alumni to share the strategies they employed in clinching their respective jobs during the pandemic. If you couldn’t attend it, you can watch the recording of the event here: 

You can also learn more about our alumni panelists through their LinkedIn profiles below, who graciously agreed that we could all connect with them.

While the pandemic marked a period of many uncertainties for both job seekers and employers, Shannon said she learned to not lose hope despite the uncertainty, and it paid off eventually. Though, it was a challenge it was for her to switch to remote work mode as she was just getting to know her new colleagues at work before the pandemic really took a turn.

To stand out from the competition during the job search, Michelle mentioned that she curated a portfolio summary of her body of work in addition to her resume. She also emphasized how important it is that new hires prove their worth early in the job. In other words, don’t assume your new colleagues know your capabilities well enough.

When asked what the panelists wish they would have done differently in their remote jobs, Genevieve stated that she would take more advantage of the online employee resources like yoga classes offered during her internship and utilize the time to enhance her wellbeing. Christina said she would get more involved with the different employee resources groups at work in order to network strategically.

Finally, when asked about how they would like to return to work, they all agreed that a good mix of both remote and in-person work would go a long way, and employers would do well to remain flexible on this topic.

Morrison & Morrison Tax and Audit Recruitment Event Recap

Emily Komendera (BEC Community Employer Engagement Lead) and Katelyn Tamm (Assistant Director & Career Specialist at the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business) hosted the Morrison & Morrison Tax and Audit Recruitment Event with guest speaker James Mahon, a DePaul alum and accountant for Morrison & Morrison, Ltd. He sat down [virtually] with DePaul students and alumni to speak about his experience in public accounting and how to get started in the industry. 

Morrison & Morrison, Ltd. is one of Chicago’s top public accounting firms based in the South Loop neighborhood and provides tax, consulting and accounting services with clients in real estate, manufacturing, construction, distribution, professional and financial services, entertainment and non-profit. In this session, Mahon discussed the day-to-day operations of the employees within the firm and the goals they set to accomplish for their company and clients.  He also answered some great and insightful questions from students. 

Check out the below video of the full interview to hear more about this amazing company!

Recording:

Resources:

Accounting Sample Resume 

Expand Your Search: Opportunities in Business, Entrepreneurship & Consulting

While COVID-19 has negatively impacted hiring in certain areas, there are some job functions that are experiencing rapid growth. To take advantage of this growth, identify where the demand exists, and find opportunities that overlap with your education, skills, and experience. Below is a list of job functions with existing demand and the skills to highlight for each.

Digital Marketing/Ecommerce


  • Digital marketing promotes and advertises brands through digital platforms like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or Twitter.  Ecommerce marketers use tactics like email campaigns or social media to build brand awareness and increase sales. 
  • Skills:  Marketing, social media, data analysis, writing, and editing.

Accounting


  • An accountant works with a company or organization to communicate its financial information.  Public accounting focuses more on the preparation and review of tax filings and audits, whereas corporate accounting includes working with businesses and maintaining their financial records.
  • Skills:  Analytical, quantitative, Excel, problem-solving, and communication.  

 

Consulting/Management Analyst


  • Consultants work with clients and organizations to offer solutions and expert advice on how to improve business performance.  They work in many areas including management, human resources, education, marketing, accounting, and finance.
  • Skills: Communication, problem-solving, decision-making, creative thinking.

Market Research Analyst/Specialist


  • The three main tasks for market researchers are the collection and analysis of market information, identifying market trends, and segmenting markets. Some of the tools they utilize are statistical analysis, surveys, secret shoppers, focus groups, and product tests.
  • Skills: Analytical, communication, Excel, attention to detail.

Finance / Revenue Analysts


  • Financial and revenue analysts work with businesses and individuals to help them make smart financial and investment decisions.  They analyze revenue and finances, and consult on the distribution of their money and assets.    
  • Skills: Problem-solving, critical thinking, analytical 

 

Don’t know what skills you have or want to build your skills in certain areas? Try these out:

  • Think back to a previous position/internship. List all of the tasks that you did in the position. Now list the skill(s) required to do each of the tasks. 
  • If you are still unsure of what skills you have or an area of interest then CareerExplorer is an awesome resource. It helps you identify your personality type, skills, and jobs that relate to your skills.
  • LinkedIn Learning
    • LinkedIn Learning is a tool that can help you develop a wide variety of skills. You can hone knowledge on different software and programs including Adobe Analytics and Google Analytics.
    • DePaul students have access to LinkedIn Learning for free. This article provides tips on additional skills to develop using it.

Who’s Hiring: Recruiting Trends in the Business, Entrepreneurship & Consulting Community

Accounting, Audit & Compliance


Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) are in demand right now as accountants are needed to triage the impact of COVID-19 on businesses.  It is encouraging to note that accounting firms are hiring during the pandemic. Public accounting firms are transitioning well to remote work, including for internships and new hires, though some firms are adjusting the length of their internship programs. EY, Deloitte, KPMG, and RSM are among the top companies posting between March 2019-2020. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • Baker Tilly: Needs in Consulting, Audit, Tax, Assurance, and more. 
    • Porte Brown: Midsize Accounting firm hiring now. 
    • Exelon: Corporate accounting opportunity at a large scale Energy Provider company. 

 

Banking & Financial Services


Going remote in the banking industry has increased collaboration between Fintech startups and big banks. The industry’s trend toward digital banking prior to COVID-19 has accelerated, and companies are increasingly focusing more on analytics in hiring. Higher levels of remote access have also raised new cybersecurity concerns, increasing the banking industry’s need for more expertise in this area. J.P. Morgan, Wells Fargo, and Northern Trust are among the top companies posting between March 2019-2020. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • E*Trade: Fintech company, collaboration with Morgan Stanley. Roles in Product Development, Mobile Quality Assurance, Trading, Web Development, and more. 
    • Morningstar: Business needs in Product, Analyst Roles, Customer Success, and more.
    • Bank of America: Hiring across Relationship Management, Operations, and Analyst functional areas. 

 

Hospitality & Retail


While travel and tourism are hurting immensely, along with the restaurant industry, there have been reverse growth trends for food service and grocery services, with many large companies hiring in those areas. Revenue management and analytics are two areas of employment that will be in demand in the recovery of the hospitality industry. Gamestop Inc., Walgreens, Boots, and Menard Inc. are among the top companies hiring between March 2019-2020. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • PepsiCo: Financial Analyst, Customer Management, and Shopper Marketing roles are open in the Chicago office.
    • Kroger: People Services Management, E-Commerce, and Retail Clerks are among the needs of this large grocery store chain.
    • KraftHeinz: Analyst roles across the board are in particular need in the Chicago office.

 

Human Resources


With a changing landscape to how we work, there has been increased investment in remote workers. A few notable trends include companies creating Employee Resource groups for families doing remote work, and there has been growth in curriculum development for hiring, onboarding, and training remote employees. Technology-wise, an emphasis on internal communication has led to the rise of tools like Slack, and there has also been growth in companies’ usage of AI in the hiring process. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • GoHealth: This healthcare company is hiring for multiple Human Resources positions.
    • KellyMitchell: This women-owned technical recruiting firm is hiring across multiple HR areas. 
    • RHM Staffing Solutions: Staffing firm focusing on commercial and engineering staffing. 

 

Logistics & Operations


The logistics industry is facing a large demand across consumer goods, including grocery retail and healthcare supplies in particular. This spike in demand has been met with challenges that include protecting the public health of employees on the front lines in procurement and delivery. To protect employees and speed transport, the logistics industry is looking to digitize through increased AI, autonomous drones, and robotics. AbbVie, Anthem Inc., and Oracle are among the top companies posting between March 2019-2020.

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • C.H. Robinson: Large logistics company in Chicago, partner with DePaul’s Center for Sales Leadership, hiring for a variety of roles, including Logistics Representatives, Account Managers, and Project Managers. 
    • Flexport: Another logistics company to watch in technology innovation, hiring across Sales and Analyst roles. 
    • Nolan Transportation Group: Hiring across Account Management and Carrier Sales divisions.

 

Management & Organizational Leadership


All major consulting firms are currently hiring, although there has been a noticeable shift from an education-based hiring strategy to experience-based hiring. Most companies are now looking for experience, education, and leadership in that order, and we recommend that candidates highlight their analytical abilities throughout the application process. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

 

Market Research & Analysis


While there has been a negative impact on growth due to the pandemic, there are bright spots across research and development in Market Research and e-commerce in marketing. Consumer demand for personalized content has also reached an all-time high and is continuing to grow powered by AI. Oracle Corporation, AbbVie, and Medline Industries are among the top companies posting between March 2019-2020. 

Companies hiring now in Chicago:

    • Epsilon: This data-driven global marketing firm is looking to grow its Chicago office. 
    • Peapod Digital Labs: Growing across e-commerce, B2B Optimization, and media management. 
    • IRi: Research and development and client insights are among the open opportunities at IRi.

 

Interested in receiving advice on your application for these positions, or curious about how to reach out to employers during a pandemic? Make an appointment with your Business, Entrepreneurship and Consulting Career Community Advisor here

 

Industries Growing Amid Coronavirus Outbreak

By: Christina Danno, BEC Career Community Ambassador

The COVID-19 outbreak has left many businesses with no choice but to temporarily close or adjust to working remotely. However, a few industries have been impacted differently and have seen expansion because of it.

Gaming

animal crossing
Image: Nintendo EPD

Considering the amount of time people are now spending at home, gaming has become much more popular. For example, “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” which was released March 20, had one of its biggest launches to date. According to Digital Trends, it “is the game we need right now – and the one people are buying.” It is fun, yet relaxing, and allows gamers to play in real-time and participate in activities like fishing or planting flowers, which can help take away from the stress of not being able to leave your house all day.    

Video Conferencing

Smart working and video conference

Another industry that has been doing well is remote conferencing services. For example, Zoom has become one of the top choices for connecting with coworkers while working from home. According to The Washington Post, it has become the third most downloaded app in the App Store this month. Its stocks reached an all-time high, doubling its price from last year. Not only are people using Zoom for work conferences, but also for online schooling, workout classes and even virtual movie nights with friends! 

Social Media

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Further, social media seems to be the answer for those looking to stay connected with friends and keep up to date with all the latest news. Digital media outlets have seen consumption and user activity grow since the pandemic.

According to A.List, the company Obvious.ly analyzed data from over 2000 Tik Tok influencers and noticed engagement increased to 27 percent from February to March. In fact, many Tik Tok creators who have been on the app for a while have made funny videos mocking those who used to make fun of the app, but now are trying to go viral because of all the free time they have. Obvious.ly also studied Instagram and noticed ad posts had a 75 percent increase of likes over the past few weeks.

Sanitary Products

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In addition to all these industries, the one that has shown the most obvious growth is safeguard health products. According to USA Today, sales of hand sanitizers, masks and gloves increased over 800% in just one month because of the outbreak.

With the fear of getting sick and catching germs, citizens are doing everything they can to protect themselves at all costs. Not only that, but toilet paper and Lysol products have also been sold out at many stores for weeks. Although many stores are restocking, they are putting a limit for certain products to keep from selling out so quickly once again.


For these industries, there is some positivity in the air. However, thousands of employees have been laid off because the companies they worked for had to shut down due to the pandemic.

According to Crain’s Chicago Business, Walgreens and CVS are planning to hire 60,000 employees. This includes delivery drivers, distribution center employees and customer service professionals. They will organize virtual job fairs and interviews, with an extra focus on hospitality workers since their industry has been having a tough time from the outbreak.

CVS is providing employees with bonuses from $150 to $500, and Walgreens, a one-time payment of $300 for full-time employees and $150 for part-time. Along with that, both companies are offering 25 days of child, elderly or adult-dependent care for employees, as well as paid sick leave.

For many, this may feel like a stressful time. But it is good to be reminded that there are companies working to help those that may need it, whether it be through entertainment, health & safety or expanded job opportunities.