Each summer, students from the University of Delaware’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics gain valuable professional-level exposure through internships. This year, young scholars were able to traverse the complications of COVID-19 by pursuing an array of internships, externships and other professional development opportunities. Each profile of this series will detail a Lerner student’s experiences working remotely on business-oriented projects.
Raquel Simon, a Class of 2023 global enterprise management and operations management major with a minor in disability studies, spent her summer as a virtual event coordinator for Happy Camper Live, an all-year-long summer camp experience.
Q: How did you find out about and choose this internship?
Simon: I reached out to my cousin, UD alumna Madison Dratch, as we both have loved working at a summer camp for many years. I loved the idea of giving the happiness my camp has given me to people around the world!
Q: How did the coronavirus response impact your internship search and working experience?
Simon: Before this, I had an operations management internship where I would have been living with people from around the world. I was super excited but due to COVID-19, I was unable to continue this due to my personal safety concerns. So I was immediately thrown off my original track. I started asking my friends and family if they had anything available and they immediately offered their help.
Q: What did you learn through this internship that you don’t think you would have learned anywhere else?
Simon: Throughout quarantine, I struggled with talking to people through Zoom and other online communication tools. Allison Miller, the camp leader, helped me throughout the process and pushed me to step outside my comfort zone.
Q: What is the most exciting project or task that you have undertaken in your role?
Simon: I am currently helping plan a virtual campfire for a town in Arizona. This involves finding storytellers and musicians that fit their budget.
Q: What is an example of a time you were able to apply something you learned at Lerner to your role?
Simon: In my MISY160 class, I learned how to create Excel templates that can be used in multiple projects that the company takes on. During my time at Happy Camper Live, I have made Excel templates for content calendars for multiple projects.
Q: How do you think this internship will help you with your professional goals?
Simon: Before this, I planned events for audiences of around 200+ for a company that had a template for their events. Now I am planning an event for a startup that is excited for this opportunity and is open to opinions about how to run the event.
Q: What are your plans or next steps in your career once this internship is over?
Simon: I plan to continue the internship during the fall by helping them with future events and projects!