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October 02, 2018

Summer Internships: How North Parkers Spent Their Summer

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Every year, North Park students seek internships and jobs within the city of Chicago. We followed up with two North Park students who found their internships through North Park’s Career Development and Internships Office (CDIO). The CDIO assists current students and graduates in finding jobs and internships related to their fields.

Learn more about the CDIO

Amy Ryzewicz, C’19

“When I applied for my summer internship, I asked the CDIO for help. They sent me additional internships to apply for outside of the Career Hub, North Park’s job board. The CDIO was invited to some of my classes and talked about writing cover-letters and making CVs, which may be important for creative careers. They also helped me during the process for obtaining credit over the summer as well.

I found a paid position as a graphic design intern. I designed and updated print ads for directories of US manufacturers. The directories are sold by state and there is an online subscription that may be purchased by businesses. There is also a directory for all of the wholesalers and distributors in the entire country, along with an Illinois services directory.

The people I worked with are very friendly, and we have similar interests. The work culture is honest. I have learned about what happens before and after an ad is made, which is something that I did not know much about before. The company was flexible and is very organized.

I suggest students start looking and applying for summer internships during their sophomore year, instead of junior year. Shadowing people before and during the process of job searching, or even meeting with them for coffee can be helpful in finding the right position. For creative people, I recommend checking out art galleries for internships too. Non-profits are generally more flexible with internships, even though they do not pay. There is a wide range of potential for graphic design work.

Because of my summer internship that I found with the help of CDIO, I feel more likely to go into this professional field after I graduate. I also found that my worries about this field were unfounded.”

Grace So, C’18

“From the beginning of my freshman year, the CDIO provided resources to get me the opportunities I received this summer. I have been polishing my resume since the first semester of freshman year and have met with a variety of staff at different times during the four years I was at North Park in regards to career direction, branding myself, developing a LinkedIn profile, and actually looking for a specific internship/job opportunity.

In regards to the specific internship (or apprenticeship) that I got this summer, Renee Tucker-Martinez sent me several links to job descriptions of various kinds, and this one—production apprentice for Jellyvision Lab—caught my eye. At a CDIO networking dinner, I had the opportunity to meet a North Park alum who works there. I asked her several questions about the company and the position and decided to apply for the apprenticeship.

The company produces software that makes boring things fun. For example the product that I worked with the most is a software which companies use to help employees understand benefits and decide on the plan which works best for the employees. My specific role as a production apprentice was making sure the product which gets customized for various companies actually works as intended. I proof-read texts, edited scripts which go into the software, attended professional development trainings, and oversaw general product management.

At Jellyvision, I had the opportunity to receive an extensive training (5 weeks) covering everything from benefits to how a tech company operates and what tools it uses to manage the production process. I love that the company invested in me so that I am equipped to do my job well and understand the inner workings of the company. Everyone I worked with seems so talented, hard-working, and kind, that I often wondered how the company maintains such a close-knit, start-up culture.

I definitely used everything I had learned from my classes at North Park. As someone who studied Communication Studies, I was able to observe and apply my knowledge of how group communication works, what kind of relationship dynamics appear in a work setting, and how to avoid misunderstandings by being clearer in my communication. I also wrote and edited texts daily, so all the writing I did in college was worth it!

I couldn’t ask for a better work experience fresh out of college. Looking back on the job application processes, I now realize that employers look less at my major or the field of work I am interested in, and more at my skill-sets and experiences.”

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