• Nathan Oelker (’14 English): Intern at College News and Gene Siskel Film Center

    May 11, 2015


    “Start meeting people.”

    Nathan Oelker

    Nathan Oelker, UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences alumnus, wanted to go into filmmaking. To do so, he grew his network through the actors and directors that he met at The Second City improvisational comedy classes that he took in 2011.

    Nathan also enrolled in LAS internship classes, which helped him network and collaborate with professionals and students with different skills and interests.

    Before going into filmmaking, Nathan wanted to improve his professional writing skills. Nathan interned at College News – an online and print aggregated news source for college students – to gain professional writing experience, while he earned academic credit. “I wrote my version of top trending stories for their print magazine and online publication.”

    Nathan’s second internship was related to film. “I was a public relations and marketing intern at Gene Siskel Film Center. I promoted films, documentaries and programs by emailing professors, activists and organizations that are interested in the topic, hoping that they would send it to others. Also, I did four in-person events. I passed out the gazettes at the UIC Student Organization Fair, went to two career fairs and went to the Inaugural Chicago Media Summit.”

    Nathan found his internships through networking. “The offers from both internships came at the same time. I met Dave via an English department networking event in March of 2013 that highlighted different job opportunities for English majors. For the Siskel Center internship, I wrote to a friend of mine from The Second City program who knew one of the technical managers of the Siskel Center. I wrote to her asking if there was a need for interns, and I was referred to my internship supervisor, who is the associate director of PR and marketing.”

    Nathan’s advice to current LAS students who are interested in internship opportunities? “Start meeting people. If you somewhat know someone, write them a polite message and ask for an informational interview. It will help you find out if what they do is something that you are not interested in.”

    Currently, Nathan is working for himself doing video work for various clients, with the intention of building his own business.


  • Zeina Yacoub (’15 English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies/Management Minor): Intern at Technomic

    May 08, 2015

    “Everything I’ve learned in the classroom has benefited me in the workplace, but there is nothing like the skills that I have acquired while working with coworkers in a professional environment.”

    Zeina Yacoub

    Zeina Yacoub – UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences senior – registered for LAS internship courses to see if she wanted to enter the corporate field in marketing and public relations.

    Zeina says that the LAS internship courses were helpful because her professors specialized in writing for a mass audience and because the classes helped build her portfolio. “There was a personality profile that I did for the class that I have been taking to all of my interviews. People have been impressed by it.”

    Zeina has been the editorial intern at Technomic since August of 2014 and has been earning academic credit for it as well. “It is a research and consulting firm that specializes in the food service industry. I write for the U.K. Digest newsletter. It is an overview of what food service looks like in the U.K. I do a section of it called The U.K. Independence, which sheds light on independent and emerging restaurant chains in the U.K. I also write and update the news for their digital resource library. It’s a comprehensive database of restaurant news, company profiles, financial marketing research and everything else you need to know about food service.”

    This internship has affirmed Zeina’s interest in marketing and public relations. “I like the field that I’m in. I’m doing some PR and marketing because I’m representing the company by giving the company a voice through my writing.”

    “Everything I’ve learned in the classroom has benefited me in the workplace, but there is nothing like the skills that I have acquired while working with coworkers in a professional environment,” concluded Zeina.

     

  • Fay Hnaihen (’15 English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies): Intern at NuZoo Media

    May 07, 2015


    “This internship is the best asset on my resume. I have so much more to offer to employers now.”

    Fay Hnaihen

    UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences student – Fay Hnaihen – didn’t know about the variety of career options for English majors. To help her figure out what profession she wanted to pursue, she registered for LAS internship courses.

    From her internship courses, Fay learned how to write for the media while earning academic credit.

    Fay’s internship was for NuZoo Media as an online marketing intern. “The company does graphic design, web design and video production,” stated Fay. “My job is to write blogs and transcribe and sync YouTube videos. I also do search engine optimization (SEO) to have our content rank higher.”

    From her internship, Fay discovered a professional path that she wishes to pursue. “I didn’t even know what online marketing and search engine optimization was before this internship,” said Fay. “Now, this internship has steered me in a new direction.”

    Fay plans on doing another internship in social media, online marketing and content writing before graduating. “Another internship will enhance the skills that I have learned at this internship and further prepare me for a career,” stated Fay.

    Fay believes that internships help students transition from academia to professional work. “An internship helps you get real work experience before you go out into the real world,” said Fay. “You won’t be so shocked because things will be familiar to you after you have professional skills.

    “This internship is the best asset on my resume,” concluded Fay. “I have so much more to offer to employers now.” 


  • Marcie Zawislak (’16 English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies/Spanish Minor): Intern at Noreen Heron & Associates

    Apr 22, 2015

    An internship is a test run to figure out what you are good at so you can run with it.”

    Spring ’16 English, Intern at Noreen Heron & Associates

    Originally a nursing student, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences junior – Marcie Zawislak – took various UIC courses to identify her passion for writing. To help her translate her interest in writing into a career, Marcie enrolled in LAS internship courses.

    Marcie says that the LAS internship courses taught her how to write for the media and has encouraged her to reach out and network with professionals.

    Currently, Marcie is a public relations intern at Noreen Heron & Associates while gaining academic credit through the LAS internship course. “I work on social media, create media lists, contact business clients, create press kits and write press releases. Some of Noreen’s clients are Marriott Hotel and Massage Envy. In PR, you have to figure out what the client wants, what the firm can do for the client and then you have to go for it.”

    Marcie has learned marketing and advertising tactics from her internship. “For PR, you have to tie in everything that relates to your client’s product. One of our clients is the Royal George Theater. After seeing one of their productions, Noreen overheard many of the audience members speaking Slavic languages. Because of this, I contacted European radio shows and restaurants and posted on their social media. It’s about being persistent, aggressive and getting the word out.”

    This internship has helped Marcie discover what career path she wants to pursue. “I never knew that PR would encompass all of my interests. When I see my work come to life, that’s when I know that I’m passionate about it.”

    “An internship is a test run to figure out what you are good at so you can run with it,” concluded Marcie.

     

     

     

  • Sana Bell (’15 Political Science): Intern at Chicago Commission on Human Relations

    Apr 20, 2015

    “Build strong connections with your supervisors and your coworkers because they can get you involved in the field that you are interested in.”

    ’15 Spring Political Science, Intern at Chicago Commission on Human Relations

    Before her internship, graduating UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences student – Sana Bell – wanted to fight for civil rights. “I wanted to work with civil rights lawyers and work on discrimination cases and help those who have been negatively affected by various policies.”

    To help her transition into the professional world, Sana enrolled in LAS internship classes. Sana says that they were helpful because she was able to update her resume and share experiences with other students while earning academic credit.

    Sana was the Public Service Intern for the Chicago Commission on Human Relations. “I attended various community events to inform people about the commission’s free legal services for people who have been discriminated against. I helped settle disputes prior to going to court. I also sat in on a delegation meeting with Syrian representatives who wanted to use the model of the Commissioner to help alleviate issues within their community.”

    Sana’s favorite internship project, which took place at UIC, was eye-opening. “The Hate Crime Summit broadened my horizons and introduced me to discrimination against the LGBTQ community. I had the opportunity to openly discuss discrimination issues with those identified as LGBTQ.”

    Sana’s internship helped her decide to go to law school. “I am still interested in being a civil rights lawyer for racial discrimination, but I also want to include sexual orientation discrimination.”

    Sana recommends all LAS students to do an internship. “Build strong connections with supervisors and coworkers who can get you involved in the field,” concluded Sana.

     

     

  • Michelle Aggacid (’15 Criminology, Law and Justice): Intern at PAWS Chicago and Public Defender’s Office

    Apr 20, 2015

    “Get hands-on experience in a field you like to make sure that it is something that you are passionate about.”


    Spring ’15 Criminology, Law and Justice, Intern at PAWS Chicago and Public Defender’s Office

    Michelle Aggacid – UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences senior – is completing her second internship to help her determine if she wants to go into law.

    To help Michelle transition into the professional world, Michelle enrolled in LAS internship courses. The courses gave her resources to find other internships, to edit her resume, and to learn how to be professional while gaining academic credit.

    Michelle’s first internship was at PAWS. “As an intern, I familiarized myself with animal laws, and as a volunteer adoption counselor I took care of the animals and did administrative work,” said Michelle. “I had to make sure people understood the adoption contracts. I also networked with people at events. I even got a chance to interview the only animal welfare attorney in Chicago.”

    Michelle’s current internship is in criminology. “I am interning in the Public Defender’s Office in sentencing litigation,” stated Michelle. “I go to jail and interview our clients, who are criminals, to write a report on their side of the story. Then, I see our clients at the court date and talk to the attorney. I am also in contact with organizations, like the Department of Family Services and hospitals, because we need those records to validate the type of argument that the attorney is going to make.”

    This internship also helped Michelle sharpen her communication skills. “I need to have a firm argument when speaking to the judge and when writing a report. There can’t be any loopholes.”

    These two internships have helped Michelle decide that she does want to go to law school. “Going to my internship every day gives me this rush. I am still interested in animal welfare, but I would also like to work with people that don’t have the help they need.”

    “Get hands-on experience in a field you like to make sure that it is something that you are passionate about,” concluded Michelle.

     

     

  • Dulce Hernandez (’15 Fall English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies): Intern at Telemundo NBC

    Apr 15, 2015

    “If you don’t try it, you’ll never know if it’s meant to be. Before my internship classes, I never heard of Public Relations. Now, it’s something that I want to pursue.” 

    Fall ’15 English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies, Intern at Telemundo NBC

    UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences first-generation college student – Dulce Hernandez – participated in volunteer and internship opportunities to figure out what career she was interested in. “I have many interests, and that has been a problem when trying to find a career. I like media, fashion and film. Previously, I was a Community and Education Programs intern at The Resurrection Project. I also interned for the fashion retailer BooHoo.com.”

    Through LAS internship courses, Dulce reached out and networked. “If people don’t know who you are or what your interests are, they are not going to talk to you,” commented Dulce. “I was able to talk to many people who directed me to other people. An internship came up because my internship course had me interview a professional.”

    From the informational interview, Dulce now interns at NBC Telemundo. “I am in Stations Relations, where I do both Public Relations and Marketing Sales. Since I am also interested in journalism, I am sometimes in the newsroom with the Talent and Publicity. I do public service announcement (PSA) rotations to choose the public service announcements. I do my research after watching the submissions because a lot of them are not true or misinformation. I also get to help the marketing director and sit in on the projects. There is always a campaign that they are working on, and I get to see how everything is planned and organized.”

    “If you don’t try it, you’ll never know if it’s meant to be,” concluded Dulce. “Before my internship classes, I never heard of Public Relations. Now, it’s something that I want to pursue. All internship opportunities will teach you something that you didn’t know.”

     

     

  • Anna Siemienkiewicz (’15 English-Media, Rhetorical and Cultural Studies/Moving Image Arts Minor): Intern at Facets Multimedia

    Apr 15, 2015

    “It’s great to write about something that you care about, work in a field you like and believe in the organization’s mission.”

    Spring ’15 English-Creative Writing (Moving Image Arts Minor), Intern at Facets

    UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences student – Anna Siemienkiewicz – was interested in film and writing, but wasn’t sure which careers would enable her to do both.

    Anna enrolled in LAS internship courses to learn about different career options, media writing and transitioning into the professional arena through an internship while gaining academic credit.

    While taking the internship course, Anna is a programs assistant intern at Facets Multimedia. “Facets has foreign movies to rent, a theater, a film school, programs for kids and participate in the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival,” stated Anna. “I research, edit and propose ideas and take care of the Tumblr and blog. I edit brochures and DVD booklets. I research quotes about films. They give me the opportunity to gain technical film knowledge and publish my film writing.”

    The internship showed Anna the difference between academic and professional assignments. “The internship projects don’t have specific guidelines like school assignments,” Anna added. “It’s a challenge, but I am learning so much.”

    Anna’s internship experience has helped her figure out that she wants to work in the film industry. “I know that this is something that I want to do. It is great to write about something that you care about, work in a field you like and believe in the organization’s mission.”

    “It’s important to see what your job can potentially look like through internship experiences,” concluded Anna.

     

  • Tom Bradach (’15 English and Philosophy): Intern at Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (ICAAP)

    Apr 15, 2015

    “It was my first big responsibility. Instead of them telling me what to do, they told me to draft the plan.”

    Tom Bradach

    UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences senior – Tom Bradach – enrolled in LAS internship classes to learn about career possibilities outside of academia.

    Toms says that the LAS internship classes also helped him with his cover letters and taught him media writing, while he earned academic credit.

    Tom interns for the Illinois Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics (ICAAP), a nonprofit organization of pediatricians that advocate on behalf of children and families. “I work in the Child Development Initiative and the Communications department,” said Tom. “The two programs that I mostly work with are Reach Out and Read and Promoting Resiliency of Trauma-Exposed Communities Together (PROTECT). I manage the social media; I stay updated on child development sciences, learn what other programs around the country are doing and post about Governor Rauner’s budget cuts. I write promotional material, grants and mass emails. Occasionally, we get to visit the different pediatric hospitals to see what they are doing. I also help write grants.”

    Tom finds his internship satisfying because he fights for issues that he supports and because he is given important responsibilities. “Through the intervention awareness work, I raised awareness of these programs and drafted a plan to raise awareness of what the budget cuts will do to them.”

    Tom’s internship provided him with the skills to transition from academia to the professional arena, and it helped him realize that teaching may not be the profession for him.

    “Everyone should do an internship,” concluded Tom. “Even if you do not feel like the internship is right for you, make sure you learn a lot. 

     

     

  • Grant Musser (’15 English-Creative Writing): Intern at Carrot Top Records

    Mar 30, 2015

    “I feel like a different person now that I’ve gained these new skills and experiences.”

    Grant Musser

    The LAS internship courses changed Grant Musser’s – UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences senior – future employment prospects. “I’ve never had an office job where I learned the basics of navigating a professional environment. Now that I have a taste of it, I want more.”

    The LAS internship courses taught Grant that English majors could find work outside of public relations and journalism. “I didn’t realize that every company needs someone to communicate for them, either internally or externally.”  

    Grant earned academic credit at Carrot Top Records as the media manager/social media intern through a LAS internship course. “I parse through raw information from my coworkers for crucial information,” said Grant. “I write press releases, update the website and write the newsletter. I am also in charge of Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, which I implemented.”

    Grant says that the best part of his internship has been working on the release of Daniel Knox’s latest album. “My coworkers said that this was the first time that we were recognized as a legitimate label because of the way that we handled the press and publicity for this album,” explained Grant. “Daniel Knox’s publicist got in touch with my manager and said that we are killing it on the social media.”

    Grant’s internship has been invaluable for his professional journey. “From this internship, I want to continue in the music industry,” confirmed Grant. “I would like to write for radio, broadcast, artist publicity and booking agencies. I am casting a wide net. Why should I limit myself? I want to see what I can find. No matter what career I choose, I feel like I am now much more prepared for the real world.”

    “I feel like a different person now that I’ve gained these new skills and experiences,” concluded Grant. 

     

     

  • Jacki Stout: More Experience, More Opportunities

    Feb 20, 2015

    “A student uses their internship as an opportunity to expand not only their work experience, but their professional network.”

    Jacki Stout'13 Political Science, Intern at Chicago Low-Income Housing Trust Fund

    UIC LAS alumna Jacki Stout made sure to have an internship before graduating. “I felt it was important that I was able to put my internship on my resume. It showed potential employers that I had experience working in my field, and I wasn’t graduating as a student with zero relevant work experience,” stated Jacki.

    Jacki made sure to find an internship relating to her interests in housing and local government to see if that was something she wanted to pursue after college. “I was a Public Service Intern for the Chicago Low-Income Housing Trust Fund, a division of the Bureau of Housing,” explained Jacki. “By the end of my internship I was interacting with landlords, social workers, and tenants. I assessed contracts, processed payments, reviewed and edited documents, assisted the public and compiled data.”

    Jacki earned three academic credit hours for her internship and gained professional guidance by taking the LAS internship course (LAS 289). “I felt that the LAS internship class was extremely beneficial,” said Jacki. “We were able to tighten up our resumes, discuss our experiences with other students, and develop our professional skills.”

    At the end of the semester, she was offered a position. “When my internship ended, which coincided with when I had graduated with my Bachelor’s, I was offered a contractual position working full-time for the Chicago Low-Income Housing Trust Fund as a Program Auditor.”

    “A student uses their internship as an opportunity to expand not only their work experience, but their professional network,” concluded Jacki. “People remember an intern who worked as hard as the staff, who took on additional responsibilities, and who sought out extra opportunities. An internship is the chance to prove yourself to the company or organization, a chance to show what kind of employee you would be."



  • Michael Queroz: Top Notch Professional

    Feb 20, 2015

    Original: Edward Drogos July 21, 2014

    “I wanted to graduate from college with not only a good understanding of the field from my classes, but also a solid practical background.”

    Michael Queroz'14 Communication, Intern at the UIC Office of Sustainability, Clear Channel Communications and Shedd Aquarium

    UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences alumnus Michael Queroz spent his undergraduate years interning to gain professional experience and to earn academic credit through the LAS internship course (LAS 289). "I wanted to graduate from college with not only a good understanding of the field from my classes, but also a solid practical background,” explained Queroz.

    At his first internship, Michael gained social media experience. "My first internship was at the UIC Office of Sustainability," stated Michael. "My mission was to connect with students to help enhance their interest in sustainability through my tweets and blogs. My biggest project promoted our partnership with ZipCar through a contest I devised.”

    Then, Michael upgraded to a public relations internship. "Next, I followed my interest in music public relations and landed an internship at Clear Channel Communications, doing promotions for all seven of their local radio stations," Michael continued. "I represented stations at various events, helped engage listeners, and worked with individual clients. My experience also gave me a solid grasp of the corporate culture.”

    Finally, Michael was a public relations intern at Shedd Aquarium - one of Chicago’s most popular attractions. "Best of all my projects, Shedd provided me with a major role to plan the announcement of the gender of a newly born Rockhopper penguin," he said. "We made gender reveal-themed promotional material and invited media to the gender reveal event. The penguin chick was female, and the public helped to select a name for her, Ruggles.”

    For people wanting to improve their chances of finding an internship, Michael suggests following up with companies about the processing of their application.  "It’s normal for some organizations to not reply to your application at first,” said Michael reassuringly. “After a few weeks without a response, I would always email them again to express my interest and ask if they had a chance to review my application. Every time I did that, I was contacted for an interview.”

    Now that Michael has entered the professional world, he continues to work towards improving and gaining new skills. "After graduation, I was hired as a full-time media relations intern at Public Communications Inc., working with accounts like Shedd, and learning interactive media" concluded Michael. "My goal is to keep doing this each day until I reach my goal: a top notch media professional."


     
  • Chelsie Lacny: Reevaluating Goals and Discovering Passions

    Feb 20, 2015
    Original: Edward Drogos July 11, 2014

    “Without being able to explore other interests during my undergraduate career, I wouldn't have known what I wanted to do."

    Chelsie Lacny’14 English, Intern at College News and UIC Campus Programs

    Chelsie Lacny, a first-generation college student, was eager to gain valuable experience from the UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Taking a variety of classes helped her realize that she wanted to write after college. "After taking three literature classes, I knew right away that I wanted to do something journalism or writing related,” said Chelsie.

    Chelsie stumbled upon her first internship at an alumni panel event, where she introduced herself to David Batka, the editor of College News. "He asked me to email him with my resume and cover letter, along with a writing sample,” stated Chelsie. 

    The conversation with Batka led to a summer-long internship at College News, an online news and entertainment resource for college students. The internship gave her professional experience as well as a better idea of what career path she wanted to peruse. "I found I didn’t like the immediacy of journalism," she explained. "And I don't like working under pressure.” 

    Chelsie found a different internship that helped her discover her interest in project management and coordination. "I was hired as an intern for UIC Campus Programs, working with different Greek councils,” Chelsie stated. “I helped make sure that the councils were running the way that they should." 

    While interning, Chelsie enrolled in the English department-based internship course to further help her professional development. English 493 offers up to six academic credit hours for students who attend a weekly class and intern at least fourteen hours per week. "Being grouped in a classroom of interns helped me because I could learn from them too," stated Chelsie.

    "Looking back, if I had not had that first internship, I would still be going through life thinking that I wanted to be a journalist," Chelsie concluded. "Without being able to explore other interests during my undergraduate career, I wouldn't have known what I wanted to do."


  • Brianna Wills: Gaining Confidence through Experience

    Feb 20, 2015
    Original: Edward Drogos July 10, 2014

    "It helped me become an initiator; to push forward on things when I'm not sure if they will be accepted or not."

    Brianna WillsApplied Psychology Major, Intern at the UIC Office of International Services

    Brianna Wills wanted to become a criminal behavior analyst. To help her gain experience in the field, she enrolled in the UIC College of Liberal Arts and Science’s psychology internship program. “Internships help you figure out what you truly want to do,” stated Brianna. “How else are you going to know if you're going to like something unless you try it?"

    Applied psychology students take pre-internship classes – like interviewing (PSYCH 381), interventions (PSCH 382) and counseling (PSYCH 386 and 387) – to learn and prepare for the professional world. "The classes have given me the confidence to share ideas, suggestions, and project proposals," Brianna said. "It helped me become an initiator; to push forward on things when I'm not sure if they will be accepted or not." After taking these preparatory classes, students take the semester-long, six credit hour internship course (PSYCH 385).

    Brianna gained professional experience at the UIC Office of International Services. "In the internship, I surveyed various international students to collect data on what parts of our services are working for them," Brianna stated. "With this information, we can work to understand the effectiveness of the program.

    "I feel that students should view internships as a beneficial experience” concluded Brianna. “When you finish, you can say you’ve worked in a particular field, and you have experience.”



  • Floria Banks: Transitioning From College Life to the Professional World

    Feb 20, 2015
    Original: Edward Drogos July 10, 2014

    "The balance of work and study was what really made the internship most valuable. It was a mesh of all the skills I actually needed for any job that I would have to do in the future."

    Floria Banks'13 Psychology (English Minor), Intern for Girl World at Alternatives, Inc.

    Alumna Floria Banks excelled in her undergraduate classes, but wanted guidance on transitioning into the professional world. The UIC College of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ English pre-internship and internship courses, 202 and 493, gave her the tools to prepare for a career. "The guidance provided in those classes proved to be valuable because they provided background in interacting professionally,” stated Floria.

    Floria found an internship opportunity where she could use both her psychology and English major skills. "I was instantly attracted to a huge mentorship program at Girl World at Alternatives, Inc.,” she explained. “Once hired, I helped facilitate the organization’s communication with a girl’s school in South Korea. I did a lot of writing and event planning, but I was also able to help the girls work through personal issues affecting them at home, at school, and in the surrounding community."

    While interning a minimum of fourteen hours a week and taking the English 493 internship course, Floria received six academic credit hours. "The balance of work and study was what really made the internship most valuable,” explained Floria. “It was a mesh of all the skills I actually needed for any job that I would have to do in the future."

    "Now that I’ve graduated, I work as an academic advisor at the Cortiva Institute of Massage Therapy Joliet Campus. I help more than 100 students stay on track towards graduation. My job allows me to participate in educational research, statistical analysis, and assessment," Floria concluded. "It may seem like a lot for an entry level position, but it's a decent amount of responsibility for a great start in higher education."