Throughout my career as an undergraduate student there have countless ideas, theories, and equations driven to unfathomable depths into the limbic system of my brain. For instance, some of these may include finding equilibrium for a perfectly competitive dupopoly, corporate taxing structures, or how to solve for a fourth derivative of an extensive calculus problem. While these are just a few general examples of what I’ve learned my four years of being and undergraduate; I definitely would like to say that the knowledge I have learned in the classroom has helped prepare me for the outside world and the workforce. However, it is virtually impossible to argue that the classroom gives you everything you’re going to need to know in the real world. “No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.”
This one quote unbeknownst to the author perfectly summarizes the utmost importance of having an internship or work experiences in college. My internship has done so much for me it is hard to begin to jot down all of the benefits that it will bring to my career. I intern for a financial firm in downtown Orlando and I’ve been an intern for a full year and counting. If you would’ve told me three years ago when I was struggling with College Algebra at a state college that I would be interning at a hot shot financial firm 13 stories high in downtown Orlando I probably would’ve chuckled and thought it impossible. It just goes to show that life is full of unexpected twists, turns, and experiences and that everyday truly is a new day. Sometimes opportunity knocks in peculiar places and it’s imperative that you are there to answer the door.
I had worked numerous prior jobs that ranged all the way from a bus boy at a 5 star restaurant to a few different sales jobs, but deep down I knew that this was my first look at what lies ahead in my career. One of my goals every day is to approach every situation with an open mind and to learn something new every day. I make sure to do this every day at my internship, and the knowledge I have gained is insurmountable.
One of the things I do at my internship is draft proposals of annuity structures for potential clients, and it was extremely astounding to be able to apply my knowledge that I had learned in my finance classes at the College of Business in an exact real world application. I could harp all day upon on the quantitative side of things that I’ve learned but another thing that I’d like to discuss is the things that you do not learn in the classroom. For example, one of the most simple but important things that I’ve learned is office etiquette. It’s often the little things that one may not even think of. Every office has its own vernacular and it’s important to know little things like when to have a conversation, who to go to lunch with, or even how long of a lunch to take. Every day is a different day and it’s vital to be able to adapt and properly react to any situation.
When it gets down to the bottom line the experiences and knowledge you gain at an internship are life changing. It gives one a real taste of what lies ahead in the future while learning in the present. If I could offer any piece of advice to any student it would be to take chances, diversify yourself, never stop learning, and don’t let your college years pass you by so experience all you can experience! I sit here as a General Business major with one of the best financial internships a student could be lucky enough to have just because I was not afraid to take a chance on myself. Thanks to my internship I am now pursuing a minor in Finance and am currently studying for my Series 7. I’m eternally grateful for everything my internship has given me, and I’m eager for all of my future endeavors.