Leadership Award Winner Michael Malenfant

Screen Shot 2014-04-29 at 4.10.06 PMName: Michael Malenfant

Graduation Year: 2014

Major: Management

Hometown: Lakeville, MA

AC: Can you briefly explain what the George M. Parks Award is?

MM: According to the award description, “The George M. Parks Award is presented to a graduating senior whose recognized leadership qualities have significantly enhanced the reputation of the University”


AC: Congratulations on winning it! What leadership roles have you held on campus in the past four years?

MM: While at Bryant I’ve been involved with a few different facets of campus. I was an Orientation Leader the summer after my freshman year, and the Orientation Staff Coordinator the summer after my sophomore year. I was the President of my fraternity, Sigma Chi, as well as was the Head Student Center Manager of the newly renovated Fisher Student Center on campus. Beyond that, I have worked with the Ambassador Program, the Leadership Development Program and the Senior Class Gift this past year.


AC: How have these roles positively impacted Bryant? 

MM: I would say working with the renovation of our student center was the experience with the most impact on Bryant. After my junior year, I stayed on campus with the Office of Campus Engagement to provide a student voice through the construction project. My suggestions, thoughts and ideas were taken seriously, and still to this day I can see the remnants of my work as I walk through the building. Also as an Orientation Leader and Student Ambassador, I have been able to work closely with prospective students, as well as brand new students entering the university in order to answer questions and help acclimate them to our campus.539748_10150933706677799_1837143207_n


AC: Why is it so important for students to get involved in leadership roles?

MM: I believe it is important for students to get involved for many reasons. First, the lessons and experiences you gain outside of the classroom are just as valuable post graduation, as all of the research papers and examinations that we are required to complete in the classroom. Being able to identify your best approach when working with others, your role in a team and how to create positive change are all outcomes of my involvement at Bryant, that are invaluable to anybody entering an organization after graduation. I also believe that campus involvements truly bring life to Bryant’s campus. Thinking back to my best memories at Bryant, many of them were through the connections I made through my organizations and involvement opportunities. Being able to attend leadership retreats, concerts planned by my peers, watching one of my housemates compete in Mr. Bryant, and being a part of the ribbon cutting ceremony for the newly renovated Fisher Student Center are just some of the memories that I will hold closest to me as I soon graduate from Bryant.


AC: Any advice for your fellow graduating class?

MM: Honestly, do what you want to be doing with your life. More often than not, I feel as if individuals are pushed into certain career paths, situations, relationships, experiences and beliefs simply because it is what is expected of them by those around them. As we leave Bryant, find what you want to be doing, who you are, what 9895_381553661970931_2080103313_nyour next steps will be and who will be there with you ever step of the way. Bryant has prepared us excellently for our next steps, regardless of what they may be. Walk with confidence and excitement to take a new step each and every day.


AC: Lastly, any plans for after graduation?

MM: After graduation, I will be attending the University of Connecticut to pursue my Master’s in Higher Education and Student Affairs, during which I will be the graduate assistant in the University’s Student Union. Coming into Bryant, I never expected this to be my future path, but I believe Bryant really did allow me to find my passion and I’m excited for my next steps after graduation!



Hayley Milner’s Research Lab Assistant Experience

hayley pic1Name: Hayley Milner

Major/Minor: Environmental Science / Business Administration

Graduation Year: 2014

Hometown: Waltham, MA


AC: How did you collaborate with Professor Dan McNally, and eventually have the opportunity to become a lab research assistant?

HM:  Dan was my mentor for my science 490 course. This course allowed me to experience hands on lab work on a weekly basis. Because I enjoyed the course so much, I knew I wanted to work in Professor McNallys lab for the rest of my time at Bryant!

AC:   Can you explain what you are researching?

HM: We are currently researching metal and organic content within in tar and ash from wood pellet stoves. We are looking to see if there could be possible harmful PAH’s within these samples.


AC:  One of the most important resources a leader can have in today’s business world is “support”.  How can the Bryant community support you in your research?

HM: The Bryant Science Department is incredibly helpful to their students. The faculty and staff provide numerous resources and helpful tips when conducting research as well as working in the lab. Before working in any lab Bryant staff trains and teaches the students how to properly work in the lab and handle the scientific instruments.


AC:  What is your favorite aspect of this research?  What is most challenging?

HM: My favorite part of working in the lab is being able to discover the results of projects we work on during the semester and then analyzing the results to see if they were what we expected to find or they could end up being something completely different. The most challenging part of research is if an unexpected error occurs during an experiment in which case the experiment would have to be re-conducted.


AC:  What, at Bryant, has prepared you the most for this research?

HM: Most of my required science courses helped prepare me to work in the labs including biology, chemistry, and physics. Also the mentors that work with you during your lab research are always there to help you along the way.


AC:  Any advice for students in your major?

HM: I would recommend to start working in a lab as soon as possible. It is an excellent opportunity to gain this type of experience as well as giving you the ability to explore different areas of scientific research.


AC:  Lastly, where do you see yourself in five years?

HM: In five years, I hope to be either continuing my schooling with graduate school in environmental science or working for an environmental consulting business that works with ecological or coastal restoration!

Kelsey Irene DiCarlo’s Benjamin Moore Analyst Internship

k @ benjamin3Name: Kelsey Irene DiCarlo

Major/Minor: Major: Actuarial Science, Minors: Business Administration, Italian

Year: Senior May 2014

Company Interned For: Benjamin Moore Paints

Hometown: Thiells, New York


AC:  What were your day-to-day duties as an intern?

KID: I was a Procurement Analyst Intern at the global Headquarters of Benjamin Moore Paints for two consecutive summers (2012 & 2013). My time there was not spent solely focused on just one duty. I was an intern in the Procurement department, but I also worked closely with the Accounting and Finance departments. An average day involved lots of excel data entry and building my own spreadsheets. Benjamin Moore appointed a new CEO during my time there, and even on an intern level I felt the changes in company atmosphere. Also, Benjamin Moore closed down one of its major manufacturing facilities in North America while I was interning, and a lot of my day-to-day tasks involved informing raw material suppliers at hundreds of companies of this change, and that they should freeze all further shipments to that site. Benjamin Moore emphasized having its interns take on assignments that will impact the future development of the company.


AC:  What role did Amica, your professors, or other campus resources play in obtaining this internship?Decorations

KID: I found, applied, and interviewed for this position on my own search. I had also been applying to internships on the BCC, but had some difficulty finding posted positions which would allow me to live at home during the summer. The BCC is an invaluable resource for Bryant students, but I feel it is also important to seek out opportunities independently. If I had limited my search solely to the BCC, I would not have been able to obtain one of my most prominent professional positions! That being said, The Amica Center was still undoubtedly an asset in preparing me for this internship. I had attended workshops on interviewing hosted by Amica. I had my resume and cover letters critiqued numerous times by their staff as well. My freshman year, I had the fortune of meeting Judy Clare, director of the Amica center, and she has been an excellent mentor to me since. The Amica center is a fantastic resource for students no matter where they are trying to seek professional opportunities, because they provide the knowledge students need to adapt to a professional setting.


AC:  What was your favorite memory?  Did you make any mistakes during your internship?

KID: My favorite memory came at the end of my first summer interning at Benjamin Moore. My last day was the day after my birthday, so I had a weekend of celebrating and enjoying the last few weeks of summer 2012 ahead of me before flying off to Florence, Italy to study abroad in the fall. The members of my department knew it was my birthday and threw me a joint birthday/last day party. I loved being surprised and being told how much of a help all of my work was that summer. The designer cupcakes they brought in tasted almost as good as the recognition felt. The members of my department also said that if I wanted to return the following summer, I certainly could.  I took them up on that offer!

One instance I had to learn from during my internship at Benjamin Moore was learning how to prepare reports the way that your supervisor wants them prepared, even if you do not have a template example. I had created tons of spreadsheets and documents while at Benjamin Moore, and I soon learned to have someone more knowledgeable look them over before submitting them to the head of the department. It’s important to be done early so a co-worker has time to do a peer review!


IDbadgeAC:  Are you maintaining a connection with your co-workers from your internship? If so, how?

KID: I have maintained a connection with my co-workers. One of my co-workers spoke Italian, and since I have both minored in Italian and studied abroad in Italy, we were able to form a bond over it. We exchanged several emails while I was abroad to keep in touch. I also realized that one of my co-workers birthdays is the day before mine, so I made a point of sending her a happy birthday email, even though I had already finished my second summer at Benjamin Moore, which ended the first week in August before our birthdays. I have also added nearly everyone I have worked with closely at Benjamin Moore on LinkedIn. This is the easiest way to keep yourself current in people’s minds, and maintain connections with professionals you may not be in contact with every day. Even if I do not return to Benjamin Moore again, I can say with confidence that I have multiple professional references from Benjamin Moore I can list as I continue developing my professional career.


AC:  Why do you think it was important to complete an internship?

KID: I think completing an internship is incredibly important. When applying for post grad positions, potential employers want to be assured that you know how to work in a professional setting, that the office atmosphere doesn’t intimidate you. Regardless of what type of work you are doing at your internship, the act of being reliable enough to show up every day and perform your basic duties speaks volumes about your priorities and work ethic, two very important skills to bring into a professional position. Being asked to return for a second summer is another huge selling point. Not only were you liked enough to be hired in the first place, but you excelled to the point that a company asked you to continue working with them. Potential post-grad employers know that if they hire you they’re going to have to interact with you every single day; are you someone they really want to see that often?  Having an internship is how you can prove to post-grad employers that you are ready to take on the demands of corporate world.