Indiana INTERNnet celebrated internship excellence on Feb. 4, 2015, at the 9th Annual IMPACT Awards luncheon. Though the event is over and the winners have been announced, we are continuing to celebrate the nominees’ successes.
These are their stories.
Indiana INTERNnet: You are a sophomore at IU Bloomington majoring in neuroscience and biology. What prompted you to take an internship in the insurance field?
Meredith Gentry: Internships are an essential part of exploring career opportunities and preparing for life after college. I wanted to get a feel for going to work every day, reporting to a supervisor, and collaborating with coworkers. I became aware of the internship openings at Baldwin & Lyons through some friends, who had just as positive experiences as I did.
IIN: What are one or two projects that really allowed you to grow professionally?
MG: While there were still assignments that had to be managed on a daily basis, I was assigned different tasks that made every day different. The more projects I completed, the more knowledgeable I became in the department. However, my favorite experiences were from the departmental workshops and seminars provided to us. In the short time I was there, we had completed workshops on customer service, time management, business etiquette, work personality assessments and more.
IIN: Your IMPACT Awards nominator talked about how you built relationships in the office, especially with adjusters and nurses, and they were able to delegate to you. Can you talk about the importance of networking in your experience and how being able to make an impact like that has increased your confidence?
MG: One of the greatest parts of this internship was that it improved my networking skills greatly. You can take class after class in order to prepare you for a job someday, but you can’t exactly learn communication and personal relationships in the same way. Everyone at Baldwin & Lyons saw me as a fellow employee rather than an intern, which allowed me to become more confident with my work and myself. Gaining more confidence opened up more opportunities for me to help my coworkers with their projects, so it all came back around.
IIN: What is next for you?
MG: This summer, I was offered to return to Baldwin & Lyons to my same internship position. However, I have summer classes in Bloomington that will keep me from doing so. Once I graduate, my current plans are to attend graduate school and pursue a career in pharmaceutical research.