The most rewarding aspect of my three internship experiences has been the opportunity to enhance my writing skills through various formats. These internships gave me the chance to continually sharpen and hone my writing skills while also experimenting with different styles. Three writing samples are shown below, one from each internship.

The sample from my Southwest Airlines internship is a creative writing piece that was published in LUVLines, Southwest's internal publication, about an annual culture celebration called Spirit Party. The piece from C&A Industries is a blog post written from my perspective as an intern about the importance of mentors in the development of young professionals. The last sample from Boys Town is a composite piece telling the story of a mother and son whose lives were changed by the help and guidance of Boys Town services. 

Southwest Airlines

Five Things You Need to Know about the 2017 Spirit Party

Preparing for a trip can be overwhelming at times. From what to pack to what to expect when you arrive at your final destination—there can be a lot to think about. But no need to stress, this isn’t a regular old trip … it’s the 2017 Southwest Spirit Party on October 11 at Universal Studios in California!

1) Celebrities May Need to Pack Multiple Suitcases … But Not You! The first order of business, what items should you put at the top of your packing list? Luckily there aren’t too many must-pack items. Most importantly, make sure you throw your Southwest Airlines badge in your bag. Other than that, bring your Fun-LUVing Attitude and smiling face, and you will be ready to party!

2) No Need to Get Too Fast and Furious at the Park, You’ll have Plenty of Time! The first question from any partygoer is when does the party start? Once 7:00 p.m. hits, the Southwest party of the year will be in full swing. If you want to get the fun started early, you can enter the park starting at 4:00 p.m.! Never fret, if you are ready to explore the attractions before then, the park’s normal operating hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. However, if you’d like to enjoy the park before 4:00 p.m., you’ll need to purchase a ticket for admission. 

3) Just like the Movies, Some Attractions Are Running on a Short Engagement We all know FOMO (fear of missing out) is very real, so let us help you avoid missing out on some of the fun attractions Universal Studios Hollywood has to offer. If you are dying to ride the Revenge of the Mummy—pun intended—or to travel back to prehistoric times with Jurassic Park, make sure to check these rides off your list before the Lower Lot closes at 6:00 p.m. Lastly, don’t miss your opportunity to step on set by taking a Studio Lot Tour before it closes at 9:00 p.m. 

4) The Simpsons Have Krusty Burger, Minions have Bananas, and You Have All You Can Eat Another pivotal element to the success of any party … great food, of course! Select restaurants throughout the Upper Lot will be open for Employees and their guests to enjoy between 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Oh, and did we mention the restaurants will be serving on an ALL YOU CAN EAT basis?!

5) Invite Your Family to Join You at Hogwarts! When it comes to the guest list for a great party, the rule of thumb is the more the merrier. In addition to your one free guest, you are able to bring up to three additional guests for $100 each payable upon registration. So, bring your family and friends and let’s show them how we party the Southwest Way!

C&A Industries

An Intern's Perspective: Why Mentoring is the Key to Success

Mentor (def): A professor, a manager, a parent, a friend. Mentoring can take on many different forms, from an upper level executive who gives career guidance to a close friend who lends advice during difficult situations.
Here at C&A Industries, mentors are found around every corner. I’m 8 weeks into my summer internship and I’ve found that each person I encounter throughout the organization is constantly looking to help other employees grow and prosper in this encouraging environment. The culture here is that of a team and, on a team, everyone must contribute and actively help other team member’s reach their full potential. From the start of my internship, I quickly learned that professional growth and delving into my specific career goals would be an equally impactful component of my experience as the work I would be doing on a daily basis. Members of my department, leaders of the internship program, career development experts, and even high level executives have made themselves available to me for questions, advice, and guidance. I have learned through my time in college that though you can gain knowledge in the classroom, some of the best learning opportunities come from hearing about the successes and setbacks mentors have gone through. I knew I had to take advantage of this unique opportunity and I quickly found mentors through many different avenues.
1) Members of my department. I have spent the past eight weeks as the corporate marketing intern. I am a Marketing major and have previous internship experience but many of C&A’s programs, terminology, and marketing skills were new concepts to me. Every member of the Marketing department has served as a mentor to me in some way or another. They are constantly going out of their way to spend an extra minute explaining something to me, allowing me to develop many new skills throughout my time at C&A. They have helped me advance my marketing skills, they understand the best way to utilize my talents, and have given me confidence that I can succeed in a corporate marketing role.
2) Internship coordinators and my peers. C&A’s Skills for Success Internship Program sets itself apart from other internship programs by its deep investment in the interns each summer. We have been given the opportunity to develop professionally in weekly seminars, give back to the Omaha community through service projects, and make connections throughout the company and beyond. Most importantly though, the internship coordinators and my fellow interns have pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped me shift the way I see things by giving me new perspective. The interns throughout the program all come from different universities, backgrounds, and areas of study yet we are all united under the common goal of pursuing excellence in our careers. Collaborating with this intern group has allowed me to view situations from a different angle and they have continually inspired me with the work they are doing in their desired fields.
3) Executives in the company. From the top down, C&A employees serve as a support system for one another, creating the positive culture that is contagious. Top level executives are not just available but they are eager to share the secrets to their success and how they overcame challenges throughout their career to rise to the top. The benefit employees receive from the relatable nature of C&A executives is immeasurable and a major reason C&A stands apart as an organization. The interns recently had the opportunity to have lunch with top executives within the company. Scot Thompson, the CEO of C&A Industries, told our intern group that the greatest advice he can give to aspiring young people is the one thing you can control is how hard you work, so make sure you are the hardest working person in the room. I think this motivated all of us to continue putting in the time and effort necessary to achieve our lofty goals.

 So, must all successful business professionals have mentors? In my experience and especially throughout my time at C&A I have found the answer to this question to be an overwhelming yes. To learn how to lead, one must have been led at some point. And this leader must have made some sort of profound impact, instilling confidence and tenacity in their mentee. Every chance you get, seek out people who have found great success and who, at times, have suffered great failures, and simply learn. Listen to their words and learn from their mistakes. Take advantage of the opportunity to benefit from the advice of those with greater life experience than you and with this key, unlock the door to success.

Boys Town

Mother, Son Credit Boys Town for Helping Them Find Peace

As Sharon filed the police report against her son Jack, she was overwhelmed with confusion and hopelessness. What had led her only child to this terrible place of anger and violence?
Jack and Sharon had their ups and downs, like any mother and son. But as Jack grew older, his anger became harder to manage. He was no longer just a kid who occasionally got upset with his mom. At school, he often was in trouble for fighting with fellow students and threatening teachers, and had been suspended several times.
What was most difficult for Sharon to cope with was how Jack treated her. His behavior at home had increasingly become more dangerous and threatening, escalating from yelling profanities at her to a particularly intense fight that ended with Jack hurling a vase at his mother (and thankfully missing her).
After that fight, Sharon had the police arrest her son for domestic battery. It was one of the hardest things she ever had to do, but she felt there were no other options, knowing that Jack’s aggressive behavior had reached a breaking point.
That’s when Boys Town South Florida stepped in.
Sharon was referred to the site’s Care Coordination Services program, and Nick, a Boys Town Consultant, began meeting with her and Jack. Nick discovered that Jack had never had any form of therapy or treatment to help him work through his anger management issues.
Nick immediately scheduled a psychiatric evaluation for Jack, which helped guide Boys Town in providing ways for him to cope with his anger. Jack then started meeting with a Boys Town therapist and started taking medication that helped keep his anger in check.
While Jack’s road to rebuilding his relationship with his mother, his friends at school and his teachers has been a long and ongoing journey, Boys Town has helped him move away from the terrible place he was in to a better place today. Sharon finally has her loving, kind-hearted son back, and Jack now thrives in school, no longer getting in trouble or being disruptive in class.
When Jack initially went to court on the domestic battery charge, a judge placed him on probation with certain requirements Jack had to meet. At a later court hearing, after Jack began receiving Boys Town services, the judge was pleasantly surprised at the progress the boy had made. The judge gave a lot of credit to Boys Town’s Care Coordination Services and especially to Nick for helping Jack find a positive way to cope
with his anger and repair the damage he had caused in different aspects of his life. Since he was doing so well, Jack was allowed to complete his probation while remaining at home.
As Jack started his first year of high school, Sharon saw a reality she never thought could exist in their family. She now has a loving relationship with her son as he excels in the classroom and builds healthy friendships with others.
On every journey, there are two roads a person can go down. Sharon could not be more thankful that Boys Town led Jack down the right one.
The stories provided about the children and families in our care are real. In some cases, names may be changed and details altered to protect their privacy and therapeutic interests.