Summer Allows Time to Work Ahead

Internships, jobs, and classes over the summer reap benefits


Bernadette Whitely

Summer allows time to visit college campuses, something that is not always possible during the school year.

Maggie Seidel, Editor Emeritus

The three months of summer vacation offer the opportunity to explore your extracurricular interests in the professional sector and are the ideal environment to refine your own personal interests. This past summer, I worked as a Business Analyst & Marketing Intern at a woman-owned financial technology company called Spave, which had been recently acquired by the Michigan State University Federal Credit Union. It is precisely in my role that Spave where I acquired professional experience, a glance into the entrepreneurial technology field, mentorship from women leaders, and a deeper understanding of my own interests. 

My journey at Spave began with virtual interviews prior to getting the internship. In order to finalize my employment at Spave, I was exposed to various documents and procedures that typically accompany the process of getting a new job, such as tax information, background checks, etc. 

As an intern, I worked upwards of 20 hours per week. The entirety of my internship was completed online; however, I engaged frequently with my direct bosses (the Business Analyst and Marketing Manager) via Zoom meetings. Each week, I had three standing meetings: one with the Business Analyst, one with the Marketing Manager, and a team meeting. I received my assignments from my bosses and would then participate in weekly staff meetings, where I (along with the entire staff) would report our weekly progress and happenings to the group. I learned the typical professional flow of these meetings and effective communications strategies, which I can certainly apply to future positions and also in academic spaces. 

Spave’s philanthropic mission is what initially attracted me to the organization, but I left with more than I could have ever imagined. I gained fluency with a host of online platforms such as WebEx, Outlook, Google Analytics, WordPress, etc. and learned how to graphically represent budget data, key performance indicators, and also perform competitive analysis. 

I now have a budding interest in business analytics and also see how my academic classes — namely economics and math — will contribute to my professional life beyond the classroom. I am so grateful to have been given the chance to intern during the summer, as I continue to reap the social, academic, professional, and organizational benefits from my three months at Spave.