Hansen ’19 Interactions during Internship Affirm Interest in Physical Therapy

Evan Hansen ’19 IUPUI Fairbanks School of Public Health – Over the past eight weeks I have been working with the IUPUI Fairbanks School of Public Health. Each year the Your Life, Your Story summer camp supports up to 30 low income campers in a program, designed to reduce their risk of poor health outcomes. The 5 day camp took place from June 19-23 and it was one of the most fulfilling weeks of my life. This camp provided teens (ages 12-18) the opportunity to learn problem solving skills and develop their sense of identity and sense of self through creative outlets such as storytelling, music, art, and sports.

It has been a while since I was last at a summer camp, but I quickly felt the same enthusiasm. The three sessions I went to on a daily basis were storytelling, music, and theater. I am certainly not gifted in music or theater but I wanted to show the campers I could learn just like them.  Each camper highlighted their interests on an initial survey, and the professional storyteller was a very popular choice. In addition to the three activities there was a resilience building session led by community leaders. For about two hours each day, the resilience building involved various individual and group activities. As a mentor I was responsible for organizing events, observing the campers, and of course having a great time by participating in the games.

Our staff of ten mentors was comprised from all across the country. Since most of the campers spoke Spanish as well as English, it was very useful to have a couple mentors that were fluent in Spanish. From Colombia, Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, and North Carolina we all shared a similar passion for working in health careers. Some of us have medical school ambitions while others have recently graduated from IUPUI with degrees in public health. The interactions I had with the campers, mentors, and activity leaders affirmed my interest in physical therapy because I was able to witness the importance of serving others. The camp was a very fulfilling opportunity for myself because I was able to practice Spanish in a very active setting.

Throughout this internship I have developed my leadership, teamwork, and communication skills. Since this was the fourth year of the camp, a former mentor trained myself when I arrived back in May. With only a couple days before she was leaving for Swaziland, we had a lot to cover in a short amount of time. Over the next several weeks I attended various public health meetings with Dr. Bigatti and aided her with a couple other projects. Sitting at a desk planning events and training other mentors is all worth it for the incredible fun that awaited at Your Life, Your Story.

Azar ’19 Internship Helps “Bridge the Gap” between Public Health and Clinical Health

Patrick Azar ’19 Fountain & Warren County Health Department – I have spent the last seven weeks working with the Fountain & Warren County Health Department in Attica, Indiana. This internship has given me great experience in the broad world of public health. One of the main projects I worked on was giving a presentation to the medical staff at the St. Vincent Williamsport Hospital on how to properly fill out the cause-of-death portion of a death certificate. This project really helped me bridge the gap between public health and clinical health as I was tasked with explaining to the medical staff not only the proper way to fill out a death certificate but also why correctly filling them out is crucial for public health. Presenting in front of several physicians was a challenge. I was worried about how I would be received, being a twenty year old undergraduate student presenting to a room of physician who probably had patients waiting on them. They responded well to my presentation. I went through some cases and gave them time to fill out mock cause-of-death certificates and we discussed each case in detail and I explained to them how they should be thinking through each case. My nerves quickly subsided as I was able to facilitate a constructive conversation with the medical staff. Presenting in front of physicians was a success and it really boosted my confidence in my own public speaking abilities.

Working with the public health office showed me the importance of knowing and being involved in your community in the health care world. My post graduate plans include attending medical school and practicing medicine. While working and talking with host Wabash graduate Dr. Sean Sharma and others at the St. Vincent Williamsport Hospital I learned how important being aware of the issues in your community is to practicing good medicine. Luckily, I was able to spend a lot of time in the communities of Fountain and Warren counties. I frequently visited the local parks programs in the cities and towns and along with the nurses would talk to the children about head lice. Also, for the county fairs I made a display on various pest bugs that people may come into contact with during the summer months like mosquitos, ticks, scabies, head lice, and bed bugs, and I talked with people about those issues as they visited our booth at the county fairs. The community interaction was one of my favorite aspects of this internship and public health in general.

I would like to thank the Lilly Endowment for making this opportunity possible. It was an amazing experience and the knowledge and skills I’ve taken away from the past eight weeks will surely help me in my future career.

Wynne ’19 Gains Valuable Sales Experience during Summer Internship

Isaac Wynne ’19 SafeHiring Solutions – My eight week internship this summer was with SafeHiring Solutions. SafeHiring Solutions is based out of Danville, Indiana and specializes in background checks and visitor management. I was a business development intern which included working in sales, client outreach, and prospecting new clients for the company. After my eight week internship was completed, SafeHiring Solutions offered me a part time job for the rest of the summer and for during the school year as well. I cannot thank Wabash College and the Lilly Endowment enough for this unbelievable opportunity and experience!

Throughout the eight week period, I was given many different tasks to work on and complete. It started off with cleaning up some of the company’s information by sorting out their inactive and active clients in their system. This then evolved into me making contact with the inactive clients to try to win them back by selling them the new features SafeHiring Solutions has to offer. Through my time interning, I was given more and more responsibility. I was able to go to a few conferences with my boss, Dave Brewer. These included sales calls to schools like Crown Point and Plainfield, and meetings in Chicago and Bloomington. Being able to take part in these business settings gave me an entirely new outlook on what business and sales looks like in the real world. At the end of the internship, I was cold calling and setting up software demos. I even had the opportunity to run a few demos for potential clients. Before this internship, I thought I was interested in sales, but did not have a profound understanding of what it exactly entailed. With my experiences through SafeHiring Solutions, I understand sales and business development through a whole new lense and I am excited to continue pursuing a career in this field.

Without Wabash College, career services, alumni, and the Lilly Endowment, this opportunity could have never been possible and I am extremely grateful for all of these groups for what they have done for not only me as a person, but for my career as well. Because of this opportunity, I was not only able to land a summer internship, but also a job and possible opportunities for my days after Wabash College. Overall, this internship was an awesome experience and I can not wait to see what will come from it in my future!

Fernung ’19 Learns how a Small Business Operates through Internship

Jacob Fernung ’19 SafeHiring Solutions – This summer I have had the honor of being a business development intern with SafeHiring Solutions. SafeHiring Solutions is a background screening firm that does everything from background checks to securing buildings with a visitor management software. It is based in Danville, IN, but also has an office in Crawfordsville. Because of this, I have been able to live on campus over the summer and commute to work. SafeHiring is run by Wabash grad Mike McCarty ‘90. Wabash grad David Brewer ‘90 also works there, and I was able to work closely with both Mike and David. Through this internship, it has been a blast to learn about security and also be able to connect and hear recanted stories from Wabash alumni.

Honestly, I could not be happier with the internship, everyone I’ve met and worked with, and just the entire experience. I have spent 8 weeks of my summer gaining extremely valuable workplace experience, and truly have been able to contribute to SafeHiring. A big key for me is bringing value to anything that I do. Through this internship, I most definitely have received lots of value by expanding my knowledge and being immersed in many different projects that have further strengthened my business experience. Because of all this value I personally have received, I have tried my best to return the favor and bring as much value to SafeHiring. Projects I have worked on include starting and maintaining social media accounts, client and other related research, leading live demonstrations for prospective clients, and speaking with clients as well as prospective clients over the phone. Additionally, I worked to start a weekly-posting blog that relates to the field of security and related SafeHiring products. I have been able to sit in on meetings, and tag along for on-site visits. Since the very first day of the internship, I was treated as a member of the team and was held accountable to perform as such.

There is no doubt the work that I have done through this internship has helped me not only in understanding more about business development, but really experiencing everything that goes into maintaining a business. My goals at the beginning of the internship were to get better with speaking on the phone, successfully give a presentation as part of a sales pitch, and help acquire at least one new sale. I was able to reach these goals thanks to my awesome coworkers and the great opportunities I was given through this internship. I would like to thank Mike McCarty, David Brewer, Roland Morin, as well as the Lilly Endowment for making it possible for me to intern with SafeHiring.

Sikorski ’20 Uses Newly Acquired Skills During Consulting Project

Aaron Sikorski ’20 LABB Intern – To begin, I would like to express the utmost gratitude for the Lilly Endowment for allowing me to take part in such a valuable experience. Over the course of 7 weeks, the LABB Program has provided extensive insight in many areas of business including marketing, leadership, entrepreneurship, and networking. For the past few weeks, we have applied this knowledge to a consulting project for Wabash College.

While no one seems to confidently be able to define “consulting” due to the varied applications of the word, all can agree that it involves a high degree of problem solving. Wabash College, though impressive in many ways, encounters problems every day. However, what sets Wabash apart is its confidence in the students themselves to solve the problems. Thus, when Wabash came to the LABB interns with two problems, we were more than ready to search for solutions. We split into two groups to get started; my group chose to work on the armory.

Because of its rich history and central location on campus, the armory has always been in serious discussions for potential renovations. However, a renovation has never been decided upon because of controversies with proposed budgets and other variables. Thus, we wanted to finally put the debate to rest once and for all. To begin, we targeted a budget constraint based on the results of previous budget proposals. Next, we reached out to David Morgan, who took us on an extensive tour of every room of the armory. We asked him and other campus service employees what could and couldn’t be renovated, and what they would like to see changed.

For the next few days, our group brainstormed potential changes in the armory based on what Wabash College is missing. We agreed that having two computer labs wasted valuable space in the armory, and ignored the increasing availability of computers campus wide. Along with the space currently occupied as a recreational room, we saw a lot of potential in the second floor. However, for many days, our group could not agree upon what that floor should be used for. Amid our discussions, we met with several members of faculty to discuss what they would like to see in the armory. While the faculty was very open to meeting with us to discuss, our conversations often led to listing all the problems the armory has, rather than what we could do to make it right. At the same time, we met with three local business to get estimates for painting, resurfacing floors, and designing a collaborative study area where the second-floor computer lab is currently. Finally, we worked on roughly how much it would cost to bring the recreational room into the 21st century.

Those four components alone nearly maxed out our budget, but truly did not scratch the surface on all that the armory needs. Thus, we concluded as a group that while the armory has potential, it has structural fallacies so large that a small renovation to increase student traffic into the building would be counterintuitive. In a presentation with Dean Raters, Dean Jones, and the President and Vice President of the Student Senate, we reported our findings. Although we were disappointed by our own conclusion, we were happy to finally cease talks on the armory.

This consulting project provided an incredible learning experience for myself and my peers. First, our meetings with staff and local businesses gave perspective on professional working environments. Secondly, collaborating with a group for an extensive period of time improved my leadership and multitasking skills. Finally, I realized through our conclusion that often the right decision is not the easiest one to make. I am positive that I will be able to apply the knowledge gained from this experience in many of my future endeavors.

Secrest ’20 Values Business Plan Proposal Opportunity to Chicago Alumni

Zachary Secrest ’20 LABB Intern – First off, I would like to thank the Lilly Endowment for making it possible for myself and fellow interns to participate in the LABB program this summer. This summer has been a real eye opener as to what all it takes to start and run a business. Meeting and hearing the stories of many alumni has reassured me just how strong our Wabash Network is, or as my boss calls it, the Wabash Mafia. The LABB program also goes to show that business is in every industry so there are many benefits of knowing the basics of business. This gives me enthusiasm, being a Psychology major here at Wabash, that I can be an entrepreneur and not major in business. The program proves that having a liberal arts education can set you apart by being a well-rounded individual ready to think critically, and have the out of the box thinking that employers look for today.

During our program, we created two business plans, one for a food truck and the other for an app. The first one we completed was the food truck in which we were thrown into the lion’s den. After the learning curve my fellow interns and I experienced, we dove into our second business plan, the app. The hardest part about the app was coming up with was coming up with an idea that was not already out there in the market. However, the pressure was on because we were going up to Chicago to present our own group’s business plans in front of a tough alumni panel. The panel was made up of 5 accomplished businessmen: Howard Hallengren, Tim McHugh, Brian Mantel, Brian Ferrar, and David Bowen. My group ended up coming up with a cooking app called Fridgraid. We wanted to create a cheap and fast way to cook meals. Our app would provide simple recipes that are easy for someone who has never cooked before to follow. One thing all groups learned was make sure you research every detail it would take to make that app, because if you did not the judges would know.

With our plan for the app complete we headed up to Chicago. The night we arrived, we went to a networking event and meet many alumni who were eager to hear our business plans and our plans for what may come after Wabash. After the event, we headed to Gino’s East to get a taste of some famous Chicago deep dish pizza. We woke up the next day invigorated to give our presentations to show how much we learned from the past seven weeks. Man, did those judges grind us with questions. Luckily, we were prepared for most, but being beginners there was bound to be something that we had not researched.

Overall, the presentation was a valuable experience that I will never forget. I recommend any Wabash student wanting to go into business to apply for the LABB internship, because it will challenge you to think critically and have a great seven weeks doing it.

Roy ’19 Applies Skills Learned during Internship During Business Plan Proposal

Duncan Roy ’19 LABB Intern – In the last week of the LABB Program, myself and the other 17 LABB interns traveled to Chicago to present our final business plans to a group of successful alums and friends of the College. This business plan was an accumulation of everything that we have learned throughout the program. I would like to thank the Lilly Endowment for making this incredible learning experience possible. I didn’t really know what to expect when the program started, but it has exceeded all expectations and I will forever be thankful for this opportunity.

Throughout our seven weeks we learned about finance, marketing and the ins and outs of decision making in the business world. The culminating project for us intern was to create a business plan for a smartphone application and present it to a panel of judges. We were divided into four teams and started brainstorming ideas for a potential app. The process of coming up with an idea for a business is much more than simply coming up with an app that would be cool. We had to take into consideration other apps that do similar things, how it will make money, the pain that it was solving and how big the market would be for such app. Our group thought that we had a great, new idea for an app and had begun coming up with a marketing plan and designing a mockup of the app. Then, like in most business ideas we had a setback. We decided to do one more search for competitors and found two apps that were exactly the same as what we had envisioned and were forced to change directions. In the weeks leading up to our final presentation we gave multiple mini-pitches to Mr. Morin and others from around campus to get feedback on what needs improvement. I learned that it is impossible to be over prepared walking into a presentation, because the audience will always have a question that you haven’t thought of yet. After weeks of refining our marketing plan, financials, and presentation and we were finally ready to present to the judges. Like Mr. Morin has said throughout the summer “it’s about the process” and this process of creating and revising a business idea was an incredibly valuable application of all the skills we learned during the first six weeks. Being able to stand up in front of a group and pitch and idea and take the criticism and questions is so important in business and the LABB program as allowed me to have experience, and feel much more comfortable doing just that. Once again, I’d like to thank the Lilly Endowment for this opportunity to expand my business and presentation skills.

Wagner ’19 Enhances Unfamiliar Skills in LABB Program through Consulting Project

Kevin Wagner ’19 LABB Intern – First of all, I would like to thank the Lilly Endowment for making the Liberal Arts Bridge to Business (L.A.B.B.) program possible.  This program has been a great introduction to business and it has shed light on some of the more unfamiliar areas to me, such as marketing and consulting.  Due to this program, I have been introduced to a wide variety of business aspects and I am eager to learn more in the future.

In particular, our most recent accomplishment was completing our consulting project.  During this project, we focused on the renovation of one of Wabash College’s most dated buildings.  The Armory is a building that is overdue for a remodel.  During our time spent on this project, it became apparent that there are a lot of moving parts when attempting to complete a large project such as this one.  We looked at floor plans, heating and cooling, wall reconstruction, paint, carpet, etc.  As it is pretty apparent, a simple remodel quickly turns into a complex list of requirements that is no easy feat.  With any complex project, there must be an appropriate amount of teamwork and task delegation.  I believe this is why this project was such a valuable portion of the L.A.B.B. program, it facilitates teamwork, as well as organized collaboration.  These are two staple skills that will be required in the future, regardless of a person’s career path.  These are qualities that everyone should improve upon as they gain experience since teamwork will always be required not only in business, but life in general.  This project has introduced me to the complexity of consulting projects and also sharpened my interpersonal skills when it comes to collaboration.

Thus far, the L.A.B.B. program has been a great experience that has introduced me to financial literacy, efficient teamwork, and business terminology.  I think this program has been a great introduction to business, while still being fun and interesting.  I look forward to learning more as I get older and come upon more difficult problems.  I think that after this program, I am more equipped to merge my business knowledge with a liberal arts education.  In doing so, I will be able to advance my career and find some success along the way following graduation.  I would like to again thank the Lilly Endowment and all the faculty at Wabash involved with making the LABB program such a rewarding experience.

Stark ’19 “The Challenger Sale or the Challenger”

Steven Stark ’19 Archon Tech Strategies – Before I begin describing the past seven weeks of my internship, I would like to thank Wabash College and the Lilly Endowment for providing students like me this unique opportunity to work with companies like Archon Tech Strategies. This summer I joined another Wabash intern and fraternity brother, Billy Bernhardt, to work for Tony Unfried ’03 and be part of the Archon Tech Team. Archon Tech Strategies is an Incubator, a Platform, and an Accelerator. It was created to bring ideas to life, build businesses and empower entrepreneurs to follow their dreams. After understanding the many roles Tony takes on, I still cannot grasp how he does it all. Owning and running his businesses while helping others build theirs is truly inspiring to see.

With a week remaining in my internship, I reflect on what I have learned and what I can take with me moving forward in my professional career. During the first two weeks, I focused my efforts to really understand Tony’s companies and the niche markets his software appeals to. I read 2 books, SPIN Selling and The Challenger Sale, to help me understand what kind of seller I must be to succeed in this complex market. At the same time, Billy and I began the growth hacking process by researching and prospecting companies, connecting with key decision makers on LinkedIn, and recording potential leads on other websites. Then we created a custom and creative email campaign to market our new products to prospects and connect with already existing clients. This helped expand the top layer of the sales funnel which is extremely important in a small business. Next, Billy and I created a electronic form which included our custom sales pitch and scoping questions to start qualifying our leads. Finally, we started, in my opinion, the most rigorous but rewarding part of our internship, cold calling.

Cold Calling taught me more than I expected, which was not much to be honest. Because of the amazing resources Tony and Wabash provides, I learned how to effectively cold call by reaching out to key decision makers, then convincing them to take the time to listen to my pitch. This was more challenging than I originally thought, but quickly learned that it’s one of the most important skills I developed. I learned to adjust my sales pitch (slightly or a lot) based on the individual and how they responded to me. An example that happened numerous times was when the secretary or “gatekeeper” answered the phone. In those situations, I needed to adjust my sales pitch to get past them and talk with the person making the decision, otherwise, there was no point, wasting my time and theirs. This internship has taught me how to tackle difficult tasks, challenge myself and others as a professional, and overall has given me great insight regarding emotional intelligence and how it is used in the business world. Thank you, Archon Tech Strategies, thank you Tony, and thank you Wabash College for providing me the opportunity to experience all aspects of the sale process in real time. I have learned to appreciate these things and I encourage students to not waste an opportunity.


Lucas Bucina ’19 Indianapolis Film Festival – This summer I was fortunate enough to be one of the two interns at the Indy Film Festival from June 5 until July 28. Despite the film festival only lasting from July 13-23, Russell Berning and I had many tasks assigned for us to fulfill our time, week by week until the festival began.

The first task we had been assigned was to research and gather information about the film festival. This was in preparation for its 15th anniversary the following year, in 2018. Specifically, this entailed organizing a few large boxes containing several different types of newspapers over the last 14 years, including any information and ads regarding the film festival throughout its existence. Dan Moore had instructed us that this had been left previously by the former head director of the festival. Unfortunately, all of the newspaper articles were mostly disorganized and rarely marked with what pages mentioned the film festival in them. So Russell and I took it upon ourselves to split well over 100 different newspapers between each other. We read through the articles, identified which articles had ads, interviews with from board members or directors who had previously participated in the festival, or lists of movies playing in the festival for that year.

Some of the other projects we were assigned were to watch a list of the popular movies Dan had selected, which were going to be played at the festival this year. Russell and I were going to spend a lot of our time working at the ticket booth for the festival, to answer questions for customers and directors attending the festival. Watching the movies would also help us be able to suggest movies for people to watch when they were purchasing their movie tickets to any of the showings throughout the week. There was also a printable grade sheet we could use to grade the films we watched too. Our next task was to review and correct any mistakes in the 2017 film festival program before the final draft was to be released by NUVO, at the end of June. Some of the other tasks that had been assigned before the festival were some busy work for organizing and counting leftover supplies from the previous year, and shuttling directors to and from the airport to their hotels or the IMA, the location of the film festival.

As we approached the festival’s opening night, we had attended several training sessions for the volunteers participating in the festival, and delivering supplies from the Bohemian Opera Center, office location for the Indy Film Festival, to the IMA. Once the festival began, a typical 6-10-hour day the festival went from each day, would involve managing the ticket booth, working the projector for the films, coordinating pickups for directors from the airport, organizing merchandise, and setting up for the other several events that took place in the festival too. Overall, this experience was very rewarding to be a part of. This non-profit film festival offers a great contribution to bring hundreds of filmmakers and film lovers together to appreciate independent films that may not have the connections or money to make it on the big screen, such as Star Wars and Marvel Comic films.

This internship offered me a much different hands on experience, outside of the typical office job this summer. It had taught me how to improve my communication skills with customers and clients face to face, and how to gather and organize all of my research too. Words cannot describe how thankful I am that I was not only able to be a part of the largely growing Indy Film Festival this year but thanks to the Lily Endowment, I was also able to be a paid intern for a nonprofit organization this summer too.

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