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.

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

 

Advice for the Class of 2020 from Employers in BEC Industries

By: Emily Komendera, Assistant Director of Employer Engagement

If you are searching for a job or internship, employers are out there looking for you on Handshake! Take a look at this list of 500 companies who are hiring now.

In the Business, Entrepreneurship and Consulting Career Community, we’ve seen COVID-19 impact our employers on both ends of the spectrum. From almost complete shutdowns in the travel and tourism sector of Hospitality to the boom in e-commerce from grocery and consumer package goods delivery, there have been a lot of highs and lows.

Below is some great advice for 2020 graduates from employers in Business, Entrepreneurship and Consulting industries.


Your Own Expectations Can Limit You

Perhaps no other age group understands more than those who have graduated during the financial crisis of the 2000s. 

This article from Newsweek has great insight on how to prepare for job searching in a turbulent economy, “Get out of the mindset that it has to be a perfect job. You can start anywhere and ultimately get where you want to be,” says workplace expert Lindsey Pollak, who learned her job hunting skills while looking for work in New York City right after 9/11. 

“Any job can teach you something valuable for your career moving forward.” Your own expectations can sometimes be your biggest roadblock, because the truth is, there are many types of work you might enjoy. 

Oh The Places You’ll Go

Now more than ever, pivoting your career is the new norm. Twelve is the magic number for the average number of jobs held by an individual throughout their lifetime, and the first position you have out of college can surprise you with the variety of paths it can lead to. 

“Initially, after college I wanted to work in the education field but found that my skills were transferable to the private security industry (which is hiring now). This has turned into an awesome and rewarding career.”
– Joshua Rich, G4S Solutions via LinkedIn

If you are looking for some industry inspiration, take a look at these industries that are growing amidst the Coronavirus pandemic. 

The Power of Loose Ties 

If you’ve been in our office in the DePaul Career Center, you’ve perhaps heard about the “Hidden Job Market” before, and the importance of networking. Where is the best place to start, you may be wondering…

“In general, it is also useful to think about dormant ties, meaning people you have not been in touch with for quite a while but they are people you may have been close with in the past,” – Dorie Clark, author of “Entrepreneurial You” and Business Professor at Duke and Colombia

This means that people you already know might be able to help lead you to your next opportunity, and having a direct introduction or connection to an employer makes all the difference. “Most people are looking for some kind of assurance that their new employee will work out,” says Clark, and a connection of some sort “Puts you at the head of the pack compared to someone who they have no knowledge or data about.”

Putting This Advice into Practice

A great place to start looking for loose ties would be to make a list of companies and/or industries you’d like to work for. Then, go to LinkedIn, and search for those companies and industries, and note your 1st degree connections and 2nd degree connections. 

Take a look at those, and reach out to your 1st degree connections for an informational interview if the type of work they do interests you. Reach out to your 2nd degree connections for an introduction to the individual who works at the company you’re interested in. 

 

Bottom Line: While it may not feel this way at the moment, you have so many more options than you think you do in your career, and reframing some of that anxious energy to excitement can be just the boost you need to kick start this exploration journey! 

Making an appointment with your BEC Career Advising team can provide just the dose of inspiration that you need.