Sara Marden is a junior who completed an internship with the Boston Bruins over the summer. Her internship is proof that you can incorporate your interests to gain real-world experience outside of the classroom!
Why did you decide to do a summer internship?
I chose to do an internship because I wanted to gain real world experience. My internship not only allowed me to work in an area I love and grew up with (hockey), but also added something to my resume that set me above the rest. It’s like the saying “love what you do and you’ll never work a day in your life”.
I specifically chose a summer internship because the internship I chose to pursue was in Boston, which would have been difficult during the school year. Also, I wanted something different from a typical ‘summer job’ I had in the past.
My internship contributed to my career goal by showing me what it's like to be the ‘low man’ in a large corporation. I was exposed to many opportunities and experienced how one can start as an intern in a department and work their way to manager within a few years, like my boss.
It also contributed immensely by helping me decide what direction I want my career to head. I enjoyed the aspect of community relations, working with the customers, thinking on my feet and being involved at the variety of community events. After this internship, my dream job would be to work in event planning for charities that raise money through being active like 5k’s, half marathons etc. (ex: The Dempsey Center for Hope and Healing’s Dempsey Challenge or The American Cancer Society's Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk)
Lastly, I learned how to conduct myself in a professional manner. Working with the Boston Bruins, I was in the office with numerous ‘famous’ individuals. As interns/employees we had to carry on with our business as though it wasn’t exciting to be in their presence. Also, being in the community and wearing the Bruins logo, everything I did reflected the team’s image directly.
If you had to choose, what was the most valuable lesson you learned or skill you gained from your internship?
Valuable lessons I learned are that you can never be over prepared or double check something too many times, make sure everything is set and you have a plan if something falls through. Especially when working events there were issues we had to resolve on the spot. Team collaboration is key for big projects and to utilize all of your resources. Make connections with the people you meet because you never know when they will be helpful in the long run. I was recently asked to work a job as a hockey instructor for children ages five to seven by a company the Bruins worked with over the summer. Building connection in the professional world will take you a long way.
What was the biggest obstacle you faced or issue you overcame during your experience?
The biggest issue I faced was living in Boston on my own. I had never lived in the city before this past summer and figuring everything out on my own was an experience in its own. I faced issues with public transportation and parking (once I had my car in the city), dealing with traffic and making sure I made it to work on time. Although, not directly related to my internship these issues were just as important to my experience as any other.
What advice do you have for students are debating on completing an internship?
I would recommend students look into doing an internship! It is a great experience that will benefit you in more ways than one.
Don’t rush into picking an internship. Make sure it is the right fit for you and what you’re trying to accomplish. Take into consideration paid vs. unpaid, location, times, transportation and job summaries in relation to your goal of the internship. Start looking for internships early, deadlines approach fast and scheduling interview around your classes can be a pain when you’re busy.