- Paul Becker
Give three words that sum up your internship experience.
Challenging, Enlightening, Incredible
How did you learn about your internship?
“I learned about this internship opportunity from Professor Joe Wall, my advisor at Carthage. Joe, like many of my other professors, has been a phenomenal influence in my life. He is always pointing me in the right direction and feeding my desire to succeed in this world.”
Describe your internship.
“My experience in China far surpassed what most would consider a typical internship. Over the course of a three-month period, I worked as a Market Analyst and Western Marketing Strategist for Star Group in Guangzhou, China. Star Group is a large rubber manufacturing company that works with high-profile clients on a global level. I lived and worked directly with the CEO for the duration of my internship, completely embracing Chinese culture and business practices. Though challenging at times, my experiences this summer opened my eyes to the many differences between Western and Eastern business.
My work at Star Group served to bridge the gap between Western and Eastern business in an effort to increase overall sales and solidify current relationships with Western clients. To accomplish this task, I created a 115-page deliverable that covered many areas of business. The plan consisted of a United States market strategy, marketing development plan, domestic operations optimization plan, and material to increase employee awareness of Western business culture and practices.
My summer experience was a complete adventure and provided me with memories that will last a lifetime. Not only was I able to apply my business knowledge and develop material for an executive board, but I lived in a new part of world completely embracing all that it had to offer.”
What do you enjoy most about your internship? What are some of the challenges?
“The most enjoyable part of my internship was being able to see a new part of the world, meeting new people, and completely embracing Chinese living. As one could imagine, China is different from the United States in many ways. Living in a completely new environment presented me with lots of valuable life experiences.
Though wonderful, I faced numerous challenges during my time in China. The most memorable would be the language barrier that I faced on a daily basis. I am fluent in both English and Spanish, but not so strong in Chinese. Although this language barrier created some interesting situations, it was a truly valuable experience that taught me the importance of communication skills.”
How does your internship fit with your long-term career goals?
“It is a long-term goal of mine to work internationally and experience what the world has to offer. I strongly believe that international experience is key to truly becoming a well-developed and cultured business professional. Given my train of thought, my experience in China has allowed me to jump start my long term goals and pursue my dreams of working around the world.”
During your internship search, how did you make yourself stand out to employers?
“I believe that a diversified resume is key to standing out to employers. By this, I mean that one must be actively involved both on and off campus. By having numerous commitments, one comes off as ambitious and opportunistic. I believe that this plays into the personality that most employers are looking for when considering someone for an open position, and certainly helped me during my internship search. Moreover, a good resume guarantees nothing. It is important to be professional in all aspects of daily living. I believe that this builds character, and molds you into the person that employers are looking for.”
What did you find to be the most helpful during your internship search process?
“This may sound cliché, but I believe that networking is the strongest tool a student has in his or her arsenal. Time and time again, I find myself presented with fantastic opportunities simply due to the relationships that I have built over the years. With this being said, I believe that it is important to meet new people, and maintain the connections you make.”
Do you have any tips to share with other students about your experience?
“Take advantage of every opportunity no matter how scary it may seem or what you might have to sacrifice. All decisions have tradeoffs, and it is important to choose the path that with the most long-term value. Lastly, build strong relationships with your professors, they are your key to the real world.”