In less than 6 weeks, our senior interns will be graduating. To celebrate their journey to the real world, we wanted to “acknowledge” their hard work throughout the semester. This week’s “Senior Spotlight” focuses in on Matt Durkin and Eden Monsen! Check out their interviews:
Originally from: Tyngsborough, MA
Currently lives: South Boston, MA
Attending: Suffolk University
Major: BA Broadcast Journalism
Originally from: Brunswick, ME
Currently lives: Beacon Hill, MA
Attending: Suffolk University
Major: Public Relations
Q: How did you find out about Mac + Lee and the AcknowledgeHer internship?
Matt Durkin: I learned about the AcknowledgeHer program through the application process for Mac +Lee.
Eden Monsen: Originally I wasn’t too fond with the idea of an internship. Working…without pay? How could I possibly manage that as a struggling college student? Well, after getting in contact with a previous co-worker and former Mac and Lee intern my doubts disappeared. She spoke highly of Mac and Lee and more importantly those she worked side by side with. She described her duties within the office, reassuring I’d gain the same experience and leave with a new wealth of knowledge to guide me through my future career options.
Q: What made you want to intern with AcknowledgeHer?
M: When I heard about what this program did for community, I realized that I needed to part of this. Since working in Suffolk University’s Student Affairs throughout my entire undergrad experience, I was looking forward to helping college students reach success in another way.
E: Although I was learning a great deal related to my field of study within the classroom, I was lacking knowledge in a more hands on learning environment. Once I interviewed at Mac and Lee, I was confident I would be getting a unique internship experience. I would be working in a close-knit environment, collaborating with both the president, Rhonda and other interns in the same position as me. Although the thought of juggling school, work, a social life and an internship was overwhelming, Rhonda and Noelle were willing to work around my schedule and choose the most convenient hours for me. The opportunity was ideal.
Q: What is the the most valuable thing you’ve learned at this internship?
M: Something that I loved about this internship is hearing about real life work experiences from my CEO and supervisor. It was nice to see how the concepts I learned in the classroom can be applied to real business situations.
E: Thus far, the biggest thing I’ve learned at my time with Mac and Lee is the importance of internal communication. Having the chance to collaborate and listen in on business engagements with the president of the company was extremely beneficial. A key asset in the public relations is ensuring that everyone within the company is informed. That generates effective communication, employee confidence/importance and the ability for innovation.
Q: Have you had any big accomplishments through the internship?
M: I enjoyed doing the PR and outreach for the AcknowledgeHer Event as well as attending the event and networking.
E: I created a LinkedIn account, connected with potential employers, and crafted my resume. In addition, I have attended my first college events where I have been introduced to company sales figures and gained some helpful tips in the job search process.
Q: Have you experienced any hardship through the internship?
M: Since I decided to go the business route instead of journalism, right before I began at Mac + Lee, this line of work was very different from anything that I have ever done before. I think the adjustment was the hardest part but, the team is so supportive and made the transition easier!
E: Although my most valued trait is being an extrovert, I instantly become close-mouthed in a professional, office setting. At Mac and Lee I have been continuously encouraged to speak up when I don’t understand something, and furthermore to take full advantage of my time within the office and during events to reach out to employers. Rhonda and Noelle have given me the right tips and advice to utilize when in specific business situations, and it's truly contributed to my confidence.
Q: Where do you see yourself in your future career? Do you have a plan?
M: That is a very interesting question….I definitely see myself working in public service whether it’s in higher education or politics/non profits but, we’ll see!
E: Ideally I would like to envision myself working within a company that offers as much teamwork collaboration as mac and Lee does. I have a passion for travel and would like to incorporate that into my work, whether that is working within a company that has locations overseas or merely engaging with other cultures through occasional business trips. One aspect of the 21st century that I praise is the ability for people to balance their life and work. We all desire to achieve happiness and success, and being part of the millennial generation we’re given the opportunity to achieve both.
Q: Do you have any advice for future interns at AcknowledgeHer?
M: Enjoy every minute and learn as much as you can! Rhonda is an amazing person and mentor. Apply!
E: Take full advantage of company events! It’s a great chance to connect with important people and learn helpful tips and strategies for applying to jobs.
Q: Anything else you’d like to add? M: Apply apply apply!
E: I feel incredibly lucky to have had the opportunity to work with Rhonda and Noelle. A small office community is best enjoyed with down to earth, open-minded people.