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Do you know how depressing it is to spend a summer at an internship that’s not right for you?

attendees have the chance to sample signature burgers grilled on site by Indianapolis restaurants competing for People’s Choice and Critic’s Choice.

Fortunately for me, I don’t have the answer to this question because I truly enjoyed my past internship experience. I have found something that I hope every intern finds this summer – internship happiness.

Last summer I was an intern for Building Tomorrow, an Indy-based non-profit that continues to have big impact in East Africa by supporting access to quality education.

My assignment: the 2nd Annual Indy Burger Battle. This would be the epic event where nine restaurants duke it out to be crowned the best burger in Indy.

I’ll be the first to admit that sunshine, live music, drinks and juicy burgers at an exclusive venue can cloud your view of what it is to be truly happy at your internship. Still, I realize the true key to internship happiness is knowing your work is valued.

Planning a burger battle comes with a lot of responsibilities and pressure. Another intern and I were responsible for coordinating the event logistics, reaching out to participating restaurants and sponsors, complying with health code, all mediums of promotion, and every detail that could potentially have an effect on the event.

Talk about pressure.

The second go-around of anything has to live up to and exceed the expectations of the first. This would be no different for the Burger Battle. The people wanted more burgers and fun, and Building Tomorrow wanted to have more attendees and raise more money. There would be no backing down from this challenge. If the event flopped, well, the burger battle blood would be on my hands.

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If the key to internship happiness is knowing your work is valued by your employer, the pursuit of happiness begins with first creating value.

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Fortunately, everybody won the burger battle. Participating restaurants got great exposure and a chance at being crowned Indy’s best burger by local celebrity judges and attendees. Attendees had many burger options, and Building Tomorrow raised thousands of dollars to further their efforts in East Africa. As for me, I experienced “internship happiness.”

This feeling came from creating value for Building Tomorrow. It was satisfying to know I contributed to one of the most significant fundraisers of the year for the organization and to know that children across the world would benefit from a burger battle.

If the key to internship happiness is knowing your work is valued by your employer, the pursuit of happiness begins with first creating value. Interns should strive to do something that the employer will find useful and significant. Interns should strive to exceed expectations. Look at responsibility and pressure and turn it in to an opportunity to make an impact at your internships. This summer, work hard and be happy!


With all of this burger talk, you are probably ready to purchase your tickets for this year’s 3rd Annual Indy Burger Battle happening on August 1, at the Rathskeller Biergarten (401E. Michigan St. Indianapolis). Tickets are now available here: http://bit.ly/1GbhYo7

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