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New York Featured Intern: Rachel Petro

Posted on September 15, 2013. Filed under: Career, College, Confidence, Featured Intern, Internship, Jobs, Michigan State University, Professionalism, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

Below is an excerpt from an interview with Rachel Petro, an MSU Psychology major who completed a summer internship in New York City through the College of Social Science Study and Internship Programs.  You will have an opportunity to meet Rachel and other students who have completed Study Away programs in other cities, such as Washington, DC Honolulu, New Orleans and Boston at an informational meeting.

Study Away Informational Meeting

Tuesday, September 17, 2013 at 5:00pm

109 S. Kedzie Hall

We are expecting a crowd, so get there early!  In the meantime, read on to learn a little bit about Rachel’s experience.

Petro in NYC

Name: Rachel Petro

Major: Psychology

Graduation Date: December 2014

Internship Placement: Doe Fund, Inc.

Internship Location: Brooklyn, NY

What are your primary responsibilities at your internship? 

My primary responsibilities are administrative work and chart filing.  I also helped assist in GED classes and sat in on employee interviews.  However, my biggest responsibility was to be there for the trainees whenever they need advice or guidance.  

What’s your favorite thing about working / living in New York?  

My favorite thing about New York Living is all of the possibilities.  It is the perfect place for people who are into fashion or if you are a foodie.  Working here is very convenient because of the subway and your networking possibilities are endless.

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

This internship experience has definitely taught me a lot about the “real world”.  Going to class is a great way to learn, but it is nothing close to the experience and knowledge I have gained at the Doe Fund.  This internship has just solidified that I am making the right career choice.  I truly love counseling and helping those in need.

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

No other program will help you get an internship.  I loved that I had a placement manager help me, since searching for an internship on my own from Michigan would have been impossible.  Plus you need internship experience no matter what major you are.  So why stay in East Lansing?  Get out and travel while you get the experience you need for your resume!

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What the Heck is Work Ethic?

Posted on November 4, 2011. Filed under: Career, Life, Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

According to dictionary.com, work ethic is “a belief in the moral benefit and importance of work and its inherent ability to strengthen character.”  Okay, but what does it look like, and why should you care?

What Work Ethic Looks Like

A person possessing a good work ethic arrives at work a few minutes early, they don’t drop everything just because the clock says it is break time, and they offer to help others get their work done when theirs is finished.  That’s not an all-inclusive list, but I think it gives you an idea.  Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean that they don’t take breaks when they need to or occasionally enjoy some down time on the clock, but they understand the value of hard work.

Why Should You Care

I could write all day long about the personal and character building benefits of hard work, but since that’s not feasible here is just a sampling; it gives you a sense of accomplishment, a feeling of worth, and overall allows you to feel good about yourself and your place in the world.  Of course, this is assuming that you enjoy the work you are doing. (But, that’s a blog topic for another day!)

While I would argue that the personal benefits of a solid work ethic are reason enough to care, there is another compelling reason for employees and job seekers to care. Today CareerBuilder.com published statistics on the topic of what employers are NOT looking for, or what they call “employer turnoffs.” Four of the five items listed could be described as demonstrating poor work ethic; unwillingness to work when needed, negativity, selfishness, and no commitment to the organization.

I am a firm believer in a strong work ethic as the single most important factor that will set you apart from other employees or job applicants.  That’s why you should care.  That’s it.

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Confidence Machine

Posted on October 13, 2011. Filed under: Career, College, Confidence, Internship, Jobs, Life, Personal Growth, Professionalism, Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

Internships are the perfect vehicle to build confidence.  They are like machines that process confused, sometimes scared, college students and turn out polished young professionals a few months later.  The transformation is physically evident to parents who often don’t even recognize their own child at the end of the progression.  They somehow seem taller, and well…more grown up!

Confidence is the key to it all.  In a Collegegrad.com survey, 46% of employers revealed that internship experiences and interview skills are what matter most to them. These two characteristics go hand in hand because confidence is needed for either one to help you land the job. Did you think it was your GPA (3%)?  Your new interview suit (2%)?  No, it’s your ability to communicate your experiences and new skills with confidence.

If you have not engaged in an internship experience before college graduation, run don’t walk to sign up for a program, preferably one that takes you outside of the campus bubble. Most university internship programs provide intentional learning experiences that include reflective assignments designed to connect your academics to the professional world.  This is your opportunity to test drive your chosen field, either confirming your choice or realizing that it wasn’t what you expected.  Either way, that knowledge is valuable.

Teddy Roosevelt once said that each time we face a fear we gain strength, courage, and confidence.   As part of an internship experience you will learn about yourself and what you are capable of as you push through the fear and doubt and arrive with confidence at your next destination.

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