Internships are a valuable feature of Concordia’s high school experience as they introduce students to the working world while helping them build self-confidence and cultivate relationships with professionals who provide insight into a particular field.
They also provide the chance for students to learn more about the fields relevant to their interests as they pertain to their academic and future career goals.
While internships have traditionally only been offered to juniors, thanks to the Concordia Fund, this summer, high school students at all grade levels were able gain practical work experience in fields ranging from law and finance to nonprofits and medicine.
Here are some of the insights our student interns gained from this year’s summer internship program...
A student intern at Dentons Law Firm shared…
“I think this internship has really deepened my interest for pursuing a career in law. While doing research and drafting contracts may seem boring or tedious to others, I actually found it really rewarding and interesting. Though time-consuming and at times frustrating, I enjoyed how the hard work and attention to detail resulted in something to be proud of. Through this internship, I have really realized that I'm passionate about helping people and a career in law could be a great way to channel both my passions and my interests.
“The best part was simply gaining so much experience and knowledge from the 4 weeks. I learned useful skills in interpreting law, researching, and basic legal work while also gaining experience just by being in a work setting. I am truly taking away so much from the experience and am so glad that I was afforded this incredible learning opportunity!”
One of the students interning at United Family Health tells us…
“Interning at UFH was truly a rewarding experience because of how we were able to rotate through almost all of the departments. Though it was a bit tiring at times, it was very intriguing to learn the daily routines of each doctor. It was also a great opportunity for us to see how doctors interacted with each other and with their patients, and I learned a lot about medical professionalism, patient confidentiality, and the culture/trends/habits of a hospital and of the medical field.
“Before this internship, I was interested in healthcare but wasn't sure exactly what specific career I wanted to choose. During this experience, I learned more about which departments I enjoyed (family medicine, pediatrics, pharmacy, etc.), and with valuable advice from the doctors, I also learned how I could apply my skills and interests to turn my goals into reality.”
A Lyvgen Biopharma intern had this to say…
“I think it was a great experience since we got to observe and directly experience to be working among the employees. The best part of my internship was getting to know new skills and concepts behind treating cancer that I did not know before, as well as interacting with employees, learning new things every day.
“I learned that spending time at the lab and researching on treatments of certain diseases is something that I would want to consider as my future major.”
One of the students working with Garuna Foundation shares…
“During this internship, I learned about how a nonprofit functions. Specifically, when the main team is based in a location other than where the hands-on work is taking place. In this case, the main team is based in the United States, whereas their work is present in Southeast Asia.”
“The best part of the internship in my opinion was getting to experience in some sense, what it would be like to work in a nonprofit organization, such as the Garuna Foundation. I also enjoyed the fact that we got to make a difference and benefit the lives of underprivileged children in Cambodia.”
While gaining practical experience may lead some students to discover new and exciting aspects of a career that further drive their interest, others may seize the opportunity to find out more about where their interests and passions truly lie.
A student interning at VMware shared...
"Before now, I was convinced I would never get into coding because it was so boring, but after this internship I feel that I could still keep my options open for a future project in this area.
"I found coding to be surprisingly fun, considering that whenever I tried learning it before I always fell asleep. I suppose that the hands-on experience is important to maintaining motivation and interest."
A second VMware intern added...
"The best part of my internship was establishing what I was interested in and how this experience helped me realize what I want to pursue. Also, I was able to explore this new world of Python and programming."
A student who took part in the CWEF internship says…
“Working in a nonprofit has a lot of nuances that you have to cover and is ultimately a really heavy investment. I learned about data cleansing, data visualization, storytelling, and website design.
“A meaningful experience I had was when we were designing their website and researching what design is most optimal in increasing donations and would appeal to a wider user base. It was endearing to see the photo options (mainly of kids) and helped me realize that even though working for a nonprofit is difficult, it definitely seems to be worth it.
“I learned that I was most interested in reading stories from their website and looking at photos rather than the data part of it. In the future, I would definitely apply for a job that was more focused on the facets that appeal to human emotions and storytelling.”
One of the students interning at Hadrian Capital claims…
"The internship has taught me a lot about the complexity of investments and hedge fund managing. Doing in depth market research on a company was a valuable experience for me since I did not realize how much was truly involved in one single presentation of a company. I learned that I am much more interested in marketing than sales and company market research.
“The many insights that I have gained about business management and investments are insights that I think will take me a long way. That was by far the best part.”
This year’s high school summer internship program was just one of the many valuable and enriching opportunities made possible by the Concordia Fund.