Internships may not always seem glamorous, but the common perception of buying your boss coffee, replacing paper trays, and having limited access to internet or even bathrooms are a thing of the past, at least for an internship at Western Union. Here, interns are encouraged to be vocal and use their perspective to help improve the way the company operates. Being a global company, interns are spread out in offices from the United States, Lithuania, Mexico, India and more!
Professional development and early work experience for young professionals is crucial as they start their careers. Equally important is the responsibility managers have in helping develop this young talent from the start. I recently connected with some of our 2019 summer #WUHQ interns and their managers to gather their insights on the Western Union internship program and how both groups grow during this process.
Question: What has been your favorite experience as a Western Union intern?
Megan Nyvold, Corporate Communications Intern: “When I entered HQ on day one, I was given all of the same tools and treatment as any other employee. There was truly no ‘intern culture’. My team saw me as an asset and encouraged me to explore and network with all facets of the business. As an intern, having access within a company as well established as WU, is priceless, and has been my favorite part.” I can attest to this warm welcome. The managers are excited and hospitable and us, interns are immediately given the ability and tools necessary to learn and succeed.
Question: What advice would you give to someone starting their first internship?
Vanessa Romero, Human Resource Generalist Intern: “My advice is to be as curious as possible and say yes to new projects, events, meetings, or opportunities that can keep you busy (without being overwhelmed). Internships only last for a short period of time, so definitely make the most of it, to learn all you can and leave a lasting impression.”
The Western Union culture encourages success, diverse thinking, and exploring new opportunities. Although interns are given a few ongoing projects, we also take on responsibility to explore different parts of the company outside our hiring teams, making every moment valuable and filled with learning.
Question: What is it like to manage an intern at Western Union?
Tiffany Teichrow, Manager of Candidate Communications and Employer Branding: “The young professionals are our future leaders, so as a manager, it’s critical to provide a well-rounded experience. From guiding them on time management and asking thoughtful questions to execute their tasks, to providing them other opportunities that align with their career passion and networking with other professionals, I have a responsibility to send them into working world with as much knowledge and preperation as possible.”
This point reiterates the importance of a great manager-intern relationship. Yes, interns are taking the first step to dive in their careers and should be open to new cultures, projects and lessons, but managers must help set them up for success by setting clear expectations and providing coaching along the way.
Question: What have you learned from your intern?
Kelsey Brown, Human Resource Generalist Manager: “Vanessa brings energy and curiosity to everything she does. She looks at things differently in a “non-corporate” way. I learn from her every day!”
It is important for interns and managers to embrace the opportunities and internship offers and learn as much as they can from one another, after all interns are around for a good and part-time, not full-time (employment).
As for myself, I feel fortunate to be a Western Union intern, where I have been given the opportunity to, collaborate with team members around the world, learn about areas of the business where I have a passion and interest and, own assignments to gain exposure which I can apply in my career. Finally, in this short time, I have already learned areas of strength to take with me and opportunities to improve as I continue growing in my career.
Now that #NationalInternDay has come and past, we hope you enjoy the remainder of this Summer internship season! Share this post to your own social channels along with your own intern stories to help encourage, empower, and celebrate interns around the world!