Sometimes to get a better grasp on their career path, students need to step outside of their majors to gain important job skills.
Senior marketing major Mare Suddarth did just that when she started as an intern at Freelin-Wade in McMinnville, Ore. The company makes non-rigid tubing that is used across industries including the medical field.
During summer 2014, the company switched to a new server and started migrating employees to the new one. In order to facilitate the transition, the company hired Suddarth as an IT intern to help identify where employees were struggling with the switch and how to make file migration easier for everyone.
“I’m trying to clean files off of the legacy network and reorganize as much as possible,” she said. “I’m also working on a variety of other IT projects and am giving the company a fresh set of eyes into how things are working. I’ve spoken to everyone in the office about how they are using files, what is being used and what isn’t and how the computers are working.”
She was able to identify productivity trends and helped Freelin-Wade’s IT department resolve some of the problems employees had.
“My info systems class definitely played an important role in this internship,” Suddarth said. “Getting this experience in IT has given me a lot of skills that I will be able to use later.”
During the 2013-2014 school year, Suddarth was part of a formal marketing project for Figaro’s Pizza. During Assistant Professor for Marketing Kelli Gassman’s consumer behavior classes, she helped the company develop a better tasting pizza dough and re-examined the chain’s target market, how to best reach those clients and ways to keep them coming back.
“My interest is in research and psychographics,” Suddarth said. “I want to understand consumer thought patterns and what makes them want to buy something. I think that component of marketing is really intriguing.”
Suddarth plans to graduate from Corban’s Hoff School of Business in May 2015. In spring 2015, she will participate in the school’s capstone senior project, Corban Consulting Partners.
The internship was part of the McMinnville Works Internship Program. The program is a comprehensive approach to strengthen the business network, training and youth opportunities in McMinnville.
McMinnville Works was designed by local industry leaders to support a “build our own” approach to talent development. There are eight organizations that hosted 21 paid, project-based internships for a period of nine weeks for the summer 2014 program.
These nine weeks also include weekly career development workshops on topics such as project management, communication, leadership, finance, job search skills, etc. along with tours of each company to give interns a perspective of the variety of industries that are located in McMinnville.
Connect with Mare Suddarth through LinkedIn.