Name: Ian Collins
Internship: Corporate Partnerships with Save the Children
Major: International Business
How did you get this internship?
I talked with Amy from the Amica Center about my interests and she referred me to professor Emily Copeland, whom I had taken freshman year. She made me aware of internships at Save the Children. A family friend was involved with the organization, and he put me in touch with the internship coordinator. I sent in my application and was invited to interview. My manager, who interviewed me and read my resume, was impressed with the relevance of course projects I had done at Bryant!
What were your daily responsibilities at your internship?
My role was not rigidly defined because of the team’s diverse and constantly changing work. My tasks were usually research and reporting, but I was also assigned data entry, providing feedback on ideas and deliverables, helping employees with excel, and other miscellaneous tasks. Some examples of work I did are building an excel application to navigate and track awards to apply programs for, preparing reports of various scales on companies and their social responsibility programs to help inform managers about companies and inspire ideas, and creating a weekly report to update managers on business news. I also attended a lot of meetings both related and unrelated to my projects. It was great to work with the team and also be exposed to so much information about the organization and industry.
What was the most challenging part about your internship?
At Save the Children people are very talented and passionate and things move really fast. Furthermore, people are usually simultaneously working on diverse projects. It was difficult getting and staying up to speed.
How will this further your career?
I got to work on some important skills such as softwares, internal and external communications, and working in an office environment. Furthermore, my time at Save the Children provided me with inspiration and information for my career aspirations. I learned about many different ways that people are using business skills and resources for social purposes and saw the different ways I could become involved. Working for an NGO offers the task of coordinating the resources of businesses with the skills of technical experts. Corporations also consult with NGOs to ensure that their operations are sustainable. On the other side, corporate foundations allocate the resources of companies towards social causes to benefit the business and the world. I am interested in learning more about this side because it provides a great opportunity to use business knowledge; foundation managers need to sell corporate social responsibility to profit driven executives.
Though I was most directly involved in these two sectors, this internship also inspired me to further explore shared value and impact investing, fields that offer the potential to do well by doing good. When researching companies I was able to see some of the ways that they incorporate shared value into their business models and was impressed by the innovation and effort of a few companies in particular.
What is your best piece of advice for underclassmen?
There are a lot of people on campus who can help you explore your interests and career. If you find yourself interested in something and would like to pursue an internship or just learn more, make an effort to talk to professors and the Amica Career Center. Even if you aren’t sure if you know a professor who can help you, your professors will most likely know other people who can. Same goes for the Amica Career Center and other Bryant institutes.
My second piece of advice is that you can make a social or environmental impact with your business skills. We’re all very lucky to be where we are at Bryant and in a great position to help others.There are tons of ways to do it whatever your field of study. There are exciting opportunities in impact investing, impact accounting, dedicated CSR programs, supply chain sustainability, cause marketing, and much more! And guess what, there are lots of people at Bryant who can tell you more.