My Life as an Intern

I’m a rising senior at Madison West high school and over the years, I’ve had a lot of fun summers. But I think the best thing I’ve experienced during a summer was working for American Family Insurance during an internship. I worked for a big company, doing things like filing and making phone calls. I also became an ambassador for the company’s social media and networking projects.

But I started with filing. Lots of filing. I had to find the names of employees as I went along, and if I couldn’t find an employee, I had to make up a file/portfolio for them. Surfing through all those names did become kind of tedious but I got a sense of how big American Family is. And then a new challenge came up and I went from the filing cabinet to the Internet.

Social Media! Networking!

I’ve been a user of social media sites but I never realized how beneficial sites like Facebook and Twitter really can be to corporations. My job was to tag team with Lisa, a sourcing and diversity specialist, to update statuses, take various photos of the company employees and post articles about managing work and career advancement. American Family uses Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and their own career blog to promote the company and to recruit for jobs. Jobs are a big thing in today’s economy and it was great to work in an area that’s having an impact on people.

On another note, one of my biggest challenges was a 30-second training about effectively using the phone. Personally, I get nervous speaking on the phone. But I had to put that feeling aside and open my mouth. With the support of Receptionist Cindy, I practiced and became more comfortable and more assertive. By the time I called the last person on my list, I knew what I had to say and I executed it without a flaw.

At the end of the day, I’d say the biggest plus from this internship would be the employees I met. They were so nice and open to me. They accepted me right away. It was like being surrounded by a second family. We shared many jokes and laughs along with the work. I saw a part of corporate America many people don’t ever get to see – the employees who have true compassion for people and who appreciate what you do. Now that I know what it feels like to have a job in a great workplace, I’m not going to forget the experience as I move out into the world.

Thank you, American Family Insurance.

Vincent

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