This summer, students from the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics discovered new avenues for professional preparation and practical hands-on experience. Lerner College students pursued an array of remote, in person or hybrid internships, externships and other professional development opportunities. From MBA scholars to undergraduates entering their second year at UD, students across a spectrum of Lerner programs shared their experiences accomplishing an assortment of projects.
Each profile of our “My Summer Internship” series will provide a glimpse into one of these unique experiences and how students applied knowledge from their studies to be successful in the real-world.
Grace Housler, class of 2024 marketing major with a minor in business analytics, spent her summer as consulting marketing and communications intern at IBM.
Lerner: How did you find out about this internship? What did you pursue it?
Housler: The previous summer, I participated in an early college externship program hosted by IBM called IBM Accelerate. The program allowed me to network with and learn from marketing professionals in the field – this program made me aware of the internship program and excited about the possibility of pursuing it.
Lerner: What was the most exciting task or project that you completed?
Housler: I completed a 10-week long project where I used relevant industry research to shape suggestions for Artificial Intelligence marketing strategy and presented to the worldwide marketing organization.
Lerner: What did you learn from the internship that you think you would not have learned elsewhere?
Housler: This internship taught me the value of storytelling in a business context and through learning from experienced professionals, it made me a much better communicator and presenter.
Lerner: What is an example of a time where you were able to apply what you’ve learned at Lerner to your role?
Housler: This internship granted me the opportunity to translate what I’ve learned in my marketing courses into real world marketing strategy. Lerner prepared me by teaching me marketing fundamentals as well as group work and professional skills that I was able to utilize in my project.
Lerner: Did you face any challenges during your internship? If so, what was the issue and how did you overcome it?
Housler: A challenge I faced during the internship was developing my own professional confidence. I overcame this challenge by asking my mentors for advice – I started small by introducing myself to people, then worked my way up to speaking up in meetings, and by the end of the internship I was able to present a large-scale presentation to a live audience of industry professionals.
Lerner: What are your career plans, and how do you think the internship will push you closer to your professional goals?
Housler: My career plans involve pursuing a role in data-driven marketing strategy post-graduation. This internship definitely pushed me closer to my professional goals by allowing me to explore many disciplines within the field all while managing a marketing project of my own.