Invaluable experiences, lasting impact
Making a good impression wasn’t all that the 2014 Siegfried Fellows did this summer at their internships.
Thirteen students left campus in May to pursue Siegfried Fellowships at companies like Wayfair and AT&T. They return this semester with a greater understanding of the “real world” and impressive projects to add to their resumes.
Philosophy major Michael Pipa ’14 left a lasting mark at the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation by modernizing a compensation system that will be used by the agency for the next 15 years.
“The system I was part of creating sets pay rates for PennDOT employees not based on one general scale, but based on the characteristics of surrounding local markets. We transformed a general and stiff compensation strategy into one that was elastic and dynamic,” Pipa explained.
And Pipa’s experience didn’t end there. As part of his fellowship, he had the opportunity to understand the ins and outs of state government. He individually shadowed the PennDOT Secretary (think CEO) for a day, attended high-level meetings and witnessed legislative hearings at the Pennsylvania State Capitol.
Pipa explained that this experience was not only important because he plans to dedicate his life to public service, but for every aspect of his life.
“Now when I hear the news or listen to the radio, the opinion or viewpoint I have will not merely be conjecture or based on belief, but empirical, based on my experience in government itself. Getting to meet people who have already done what I plan on doing is truly invaluable,” he said.
An open-ended opportunity
Senior Taylor Lawlor’s boss at an integrated marketing firm in New York City, PM Digital, was in need of new ideas. He asked the psychology major to review one of their client’s social media platforms and make recommendations.
“It was a very open-ended project,” Lawlor said.
She used what she knew about psychology and her own experience as a user and consumer of social media to make recommendations to her boss. She created a plan to better promote their brand, expand awareness and increase their online interaction with customers. Her boss was impressed.
“This experience has helped me prepare for the future by showing me which jobs I'm good at it, and which parts of the job I need to work on. It's also shown me what my interests are and where I could find myself really succeeding,” Lawlor said.
Part of the team
Rewarding. Proud. Ready.
Three words Ashley Slaboden ’15 used when describing her fellowship experience this summer.
The organization management studies major went outside of her comfort zone. The self-admitted “non-city-girl” pursued an internship with Wayfair, a large corporation in the center of Boston. The experience, she says, made her one step closer to feeling prepared to graduate from Gettysburg.
“Leaving campus this past May was difficult because I could not see myself as a senior. However, after this summer I feel I have had a glimpse into life after Gettysburg. I have learned a lot about myself as a student, developing employee and overall person this summer. I am very grateful to have had this experience,” she said.
While at Wayfair, Sladboden was instrumental in planning Wayfair Wellness Week, a week dedicated to inspire employees to live healthy and happy lives. In addition, she was charged with making weekly presentations to new hires. After spending a few weeks shadowing her colleagues, she was given the opportunity to present on her own.
“I felt very proud to represent the team,” she said, emphasizing that Wayfair treated her like an employee, not just an intern.
Learn more about the program and meet all of the 2014 Siegfried Fellows.
From fellow to full-time
Two of the 2013 Siegfried Fellows were offered full-time jobs following their internships. Lizzie Laughlin ’14 received an employment offer from Virginia-based insurance brokerage firm, Lockton the final day of her internship. Alexander Freeman ’14 was offered a job with GE Capital in Connecticut a few months following his internship.
The Siegfried Experience
The Siegfried Fellowship program is designed to go beyond the typical intern experience. The Fellowship provides students with an outcomes-based internship experience that delivers results, valuable insights and hands on professional work experience; access to career and professional development programs; and the opportunity to pay it forward as an ambassador and mentor to future fellows.
The Siegfried Fellowships began in the summer of 2012 with a generous gift from Jeff Siegfried ’81, CEO of Omni Cable to support engaged learning as part of the Gettysburg Great Campaign. To date, the Siegfried Fellowship has enabled 23 students the opportunity for a remarkable internship experience.
The 2015 Siegfried Fellowship application process will be open in early September.
Provide high-impact learning opportunities within and beyond the classroom.
Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.
Contact: Jamie Yates, director of communications and media relations, 717.337.6801
Posted: Thu, 7 Aug 2014
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