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University of Delaware - Alfred Lerner College of Business & Economics

By Lerner August 13, 2019

Each summer, students from the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics gain important real-world professional skills through internships. In each installment of this series, you’ll hear firsthand about how one Lerner student secured their internship, what their experience as an intern was like and what comes next!

Nishant Chintala, Class of 2021, double major in finance and computer science, has spent his summer in Horsham, Pennsylvania as a business transformation intern at Penn Mutual.

Q: How did you find out about this internship?

Chintala: I worked at Penn Mutual last summer as a quality assurance intern and really enjoyed it. Because of that positive experience, I looked into working here again this summer and I found out about the business transformation intern role. This role is unique in that it explores the intersection of technology and business and the role that both of these fields play on the company. As a business transformation intern, I have the opportunity to help out the Information Technology department as well as the Marketing and Asset Management departments. 

I chose this internship because it intrigued me and I knew I wanted to expose myself to both technology and business. In addition, the company culture involves a lot of collaboration and sharing of knowledge. Everyone is very open and willing to answer questions or give advice. This culture is very conducive to growth and really allows for human interaction. All of these reasons helped me make the choice to come back to Penn Mutual for another summer.

Q: What is the most exciting task that you have undertaken in your role?

Chintala: The most exciting project that I had the ability to work on was the Public Site Crafter Conversion project. In this project, we converted existing web pages from our public site into content management systems to allow for easier editing of the content on each page. Before coming into this internship, I had little to no experience working with content management systems and JavaScript frameworks like React. However, over the past eight weeks, I was able to learn more about React and how to use it in the context of a content management system. Each page presented a different challenge, and I found that exciting because it was an opportunity to learn something new.

Q: What did you learn through this internship that you don’t think you would have learned anywhere else?

Chintala: One thing that I learned through this internship that I would probably not have learned elsewhere is the importance of a strong team. No matter what the project or task at hand, it is imperative to put effort into creating a strong team. In working primarily with the Design Experience Team at Penn Mutual, I could clearly see how collaborative and how united they were. 

My project manager was crucial to creating such a strong team environment. She always valued our time and efforts and made sure to give the team members the necessary resources to complete whatever task they were working on. In addition, she never avoided conflict; rather she saw it as a way to grow and make the team even stronger. I learned a lot about teamwork just by watching how the Design Experience Team interacted and I’m excited to use what I have learned back at college.

Q: What is an example of a time you were able to apply something you learned at the Lerner College to your role?

Chintala: One of the very first assignments I was given was to gather data on page views and downloads for over 3000 different web pages and PDFs. This assignment was for one of the largest projects in company history so it was crucial for the data to be presented accurately and in a timely manner. The task included typing in the name of the page or file on Adobe Analytics, looking at the page views and downloads data, and then manually inputting it into an Excel spreadsheet. 

It was overwhelming to say the least. However, in order to ensure that I was able to get the data in an efficient and accurate manner, I used my knowledge of various Excel functions that I learned from my classes at Lerner. I was able to automate the majority of the process and complete the task within a few days when it would have taken a few weeks to do it the original way. In addition, because my colleagues were intrigued as to how I was able to complete the task so quickly and accurately, I was able to teach them about some of the functions that I used.

Q: What has been the most fun part of your internship?

Chintala: The most fun part of my internship has been getting to know the people that I work with. Each and every one of them has their own unique story to tell as to how they got to where they are. They are all very willing to give advice and help out with any questions or issues that I have and are always looking for opportunities to spread their knowledge on various topics. 

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, we typically go on a walk during lunch, in which they usually give various bits of advice or knowledge on different topics which are very interesting and also very informative. It truly has been a pleasure working with them and I will definitely continue to stay in touch with them.

Q: How do you think this internship will help you with your professional goals?

Chintala: This internship will definitely help with my professional goals because of how much I have learned from my colleagues about career advice. Most of them have had years of experience in various industries and were able to give me insight into what they have done and learned over the years. The rest who are young were able to relate with me because they were in my shoes just a few years ago and gave me advice for college. All of my colleagues were mentors to me throughout the past few weeks and I will definitely use their advice to guide me down the right path in my future.

Q: What are your plans or next steps once this internship is over?

Chintala: Upon completion of this internship, I plan to go back to the University of Delaware to complete my junior fall semester. I am excited to take all the skills (both technical and soft) that I have learned in my time at Penn Mutual and use them to succeed in the rest of my college career, both in the classroom and in my extracurricular activities.