STEP Experience: Internship
My STEP funds helped me to complete an internship with Nationwide Insurance within their finance department. My internship was located at Nationwide’s headquarters in downtown Columbus, Ohio.
During my internship I was able to learn about my career field, in accounting. As well as other aspects of what it is like to work in a large corporate setting. I was able to see how my education at Ohio State transferred directly and indirectly to the workforce. Having this internship has given me a better perspective on the bigger picture of where I see my career going. I can see how my classes are teaching me a foundational level of knowledge. However, it is impossible to be fully prepared for your first job. This is where the transferable skills I have learned at Ohio State come into play. It is these skills that help set you apart from your peers within the workforce. You have to have initiative and determination to help set you apart.
I think that one of the most important aspects of my internship were the relationships I was able to build with my coworkers. This included both the other interns that worked within my area as well as the team I worked with all summer. Nationwide really promotes networking and it is something that I took advantage of. I was able to hear a lot of stories on how my coworkers got to where they were at within their career. I think that hearing these personal stories has really helped me to have a better perspective on the different career paths that are out there. I was also able to form friendships with the other interns. I am excited to continue to grow these connections and friendships even after my internship.
Another important aspect was being able to do real work outside of the classroom. I was able to work on projects that had a real impact. Doing this work lead to great insight into what the day to day tasks are like in my career field. I was able to work with the most current technology in the industry and get a lot of great practice with it. I was able to see how important computer skills and the ability to work with large amounts of data really is. I have a better view now of the skills I should have as I enter the workforce and how employers expect you to use these skills.
Lastly, just the experience of working at a large corporation provided invaluable experience. I was able to pick up on so many small interactions. Whether it was setting up networking coffees in the local coffee shop or taking initiative to work on more projects. I learned that hard work really does pay off and I was able to see it first hand through the promotions my coworkers received. Just because you are not in school does not mean that you have to stop learning or become content with where you are at. It is so important to continue learning new things not just while in school, but throughout your career.
The experience I had this summer forever changed my future and I know that for a fact. Without this experience I would not have the broadened perspective that I have now. I can see the bigger picture and it makes me so excited for the future. Having this experience has allowed me to see just how right this career path is for me. The skills I have been able to learn this summer will continue to help me with my future career endeavors.