Friday, May 21, 2010

Internship Bliss

Internships probably have honeymoon periods just like everything else. If that is true, I am still in mine.

The internship search was filled with tears, stress and anxiety for me. I never started counting my rejections (or "dings"), but some of the highlights included a rejection mere hours after I submitted the application and a rejection from a company that I never actually even submitted an application for. All in all, there were many, many moments during which those who were close to me had to remind me that things WOULD work out, and I would find the right internship.

Five days in, I couldn't agree more. Besides the fact that it's very convenient to stay in Charlottesville for the summer, I am finding the more I discover, the more I like this great town. Even better, I am working out of the Charlottesville Technology Incubator this summer (no room to work in the warehouse!) and it's located right on the Downtown Mall, which is by far my favourite part of Charlottesville. I spend my lunch and coffee breaks people watching and sampling some of C'ville's great restaurants. Perfect!

But all of that is cosmetic.

When I started my internship search, I was very focussed on consulting. I wanted to do consulting because of the ability to gain experience over a variety of functions and take on new challenges every couple of months. Anyway, Relay Foods excited me because it would give me the opportunity to work across functions, make an impact, and be part of a growing company. As it turns out, my internship is being constructed like a consulting project. I am working with a project manager who is a Darden professor who was a partner at a consulting firm pre-Darden and has already taught me a LOT about strategy, operations and marketing. In addition to getting the consulting experience that I really wanted, I get to use a lot of the skills I learned in my favourite class - Decision Analysis and Optimization.

All that said, it's also going to be quite an intense summer. I can't believe a week has already flown by! Given how much I want to accomplish yet, I know there are going to be many long days in the future.

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