San Francisco

San Francisco Bay Area Intern: Brandi Skanes

Posted on September 5, 2014. Filed under: Career, College, Featured Intern, Internship, Michigan State University, San Francisco | Tags: , , , , , , |

Continuing our intern series with a feature on  Brandi  Skanes, Psychology and Marketing major who traveled to the West Coast for her internship.  As part of MSU’s partnership with Academic Internship Council, students have an opportunity to gain experience in the San Francisco Bay  Area while living near Berkeley.

Brandi Skanes Portrait

Name: Brandi Skanes

Hometown: Kentwood, MI

Major: Psychology & Marketing

Graduation Date: Spring 2017

Internship Placement: DSM Biomedical – Communications Intern

Internship Location: Berkeley, CA

What were your primary responsibilities at your internship?

My internship had four main focuses which include external communications, internal communications, CRM maintenance, and market research. So I have different projects within each focus.

What were some main projects you had worked on?

My main project was confidential, but I was doing research on our company’s competitors and customers. My side projects included cleaning up the CRM database that contains all customer and vendor information. My main project for internal communication was updating the news blog for the DSM Corporate Biomedical channel, and then the individual offices within the biomed field. For the external communications project, my supervisor showed me the steps of how we rebranded our company, and why the brand turned out the way it has. After learning about the brand, my supervisor, the senior communications specialist, and I worked on a video project. Again, I can’t say much about it because it was confidential.

What was one of the highlights of your internship?

There have been so many. Because I made a great amount of progress on my main projects, my supervisor gave me the opportunity to expand further than just learning about marketing and communications. She suggested I join a different subcommittee within the company that doesn’t have a connection to marketing, yet could teach me how to work within a group, and how to be creative and grab people’s attention through the material I present to them.

How has your internship experience enhanced your academic and/or career plans?

It has made me realize that I do want to have a career in a marketing or communications department but in an industry I am more interested in.

If you would like to learn more about a San Francisco Bay Area internship experience, please visit and check the event calendar for upcoming meetings or call 517-432-4541 for an appointment.

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San Francisco Featured Intern: Jalessa Brown

Posted on August 20, 2013. Filed under: Career, College, Internship, Jobs, Michigan State University, Personal Growth, Professionalism, San Francisco | Tags: , , |

Jalessa in San FranciscoMeet our featured San Francisco intern, Jalessa Brown! Jalessa spent the summer in the San Francisco Bay area getting experience at an internship AND she is heading to Washington, DC for another one!  Jalessa believes in the power that these experiences can add to her resume. Read on to learn about her summer experience.

Name: Jalessa Brown
Major: Political Science
Internship Placement: Sungevity (
Internship Location: San Francisco, CA

How did you learn about MSU’s Study and Internship programs and why did you choose to apply?

Spring semester I was taking a philosophy class in Berkey Hall and one day while waiting for class to start I decided to walk around and I happened to stumble across the study away office. After getting more information about all the different places I could go and classes I could take I choose to apply. I knew that having an internship in a state different from Michigan would stand out on my resume. I also knew that I could gain a lot of invaluable experience working as an intern.

What are your primary responsibilities at your internship?

I worked as a support specialist for Sungevity, a residential solar energy company. My primary responsibilities were to process incoming customer packs full of required documents for solar panel interconnection. I also worked a lot with Automated Clearing House, and making sure that Sungevity had the necessary signatures and proper payment information for the finance operations department.  Among my other responsibilities I learned a great deal of professionalism.

What’s your favorite thing about working / living in the Bay Area?

My favorite thing about working and living in the Bay area is the culture. The Bay area is full of great art, good food and lots of entertainment. I also really enjoyed the laid back atmosphere at work and the amazing views of the ocean.

How has your internship experience impacted your academic and/or career plans?

My internship has impacted my career plans by giving me clarification about my future career aspirations. This internship has given me a better understanding of what I want and do not want in a career. An executive at Sungevity helped me to realize that no matter what I do I should always be true to myself when looking for jobs or at career choices.

If you were speaking to an MSU student who was thinking about applying to an internship program, what would you say to convince them?

Why try to find an internship and go out of the state all on your own? All MSU students should take advantage of The Study and Internship programs it’s A LOT easier! It’s a great experience, and a really good way of getting a competitive edge when searching for jobs.

If you are interested in an internship in the San Francisco Bay Area this summer, go to the San Francisco tab on this website and view the webinar. You can also contact Jalessa at to learn more about her experience.

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