It has only been 4 weeks, but I already feel as if I have been working for a much longer time. At the beginning, it felt strange having a 9am-5pm work schedule, and took some time before I adjusted to that lifestyle. Nevertheless, my internship at Giles and Associates Consultancy (GAC) has been very rewarding and has given me a better understanding of what career I want for the future.
I found my internship through iNet (a internship posting board that only students from top schools can access), using key word searches for consulting firms with a focus in the healthcare industry. GAC popped up and it was a perfect fit. GAC is a boutique strategy consulting firm specializing in pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and consumer health. It embodies my key interests in both economics and science, and I was ecstatic when I received the internship.
The majority of the consultants there are women with over 20 years of previous industry experience, so we always have a lot to discuss. Our impromptu conversations range from work-related material to the Supreme Court decision on Obamacare to barbeques and the TV show, Smash. The casual environment there made me feel welcome and comfortable immediately, but I also had many tasks to do. I was given my first project 2 hours after I arrived on the first day. I gave a presentation yesterday at a company strategy meeting where I led a discussion on consulting e-tools and an analysis on competitor companies. During that meeting, I was also able to engage in a branding and naming discussion, followed by an interactive brainstorming activity. The entire session was built upon teamwork and the synergy of creative minds and ideas of all members of the team. I felt truly special to have been a part of that.
Apart from gaining professional work experience at GAC, I have also received an abundance of valuable advice about job recruitment and networking. My direct supervisor highlighted the importance of taking the initiative and reaching out to people you know. It is not easy and can be daunting at times, but it is important to break out of that bubble and just go for it! I will definitely keep those words in mind in the upcoming year when I am looking for jobs.
About the NU Intern Blogger Program
This summer, over 50 Northwestern University students will be sharing stories about what they are experiencing at their internships from across the country and internationally. Each week new students will share an inside look at what it means to be an intern. Please contact Betsy Gill, Assistant Director, Internship Services if you have any questions.