St. John’s Students Intern for Local Alumni
This summer, 50 St. John’s high school students immersed themselves in the worlds of business, arts, sports, medicine and more under the mentorship of those who share memories of the same hallowed halls and Alma Mater current students themselves do.
The St. John’s Summer Internship Program pairs eager students with local St. John’s alumni in various industries, offering students a dynamic work experience and the opportunity to develop an understanding of the professional world within specific industries of interest to them. The strength of the St. John’s Alumni network allows the internship program to place students in over 20 different fields, such as oil & gas, real estate, software/IT and politics. Two-week experiential internships in engineering, architecture, banking, law and more lay at the fingertips of rising sophomores, juniors and seniors, though the program prioritizes upperclassmen in the selection process. Prospective interns complete applications, and acceptees are assigned to an alumni mentor that currently works in the student’s indicated industry of choice.
Senior Olivia Reasoner expressed interest in working for a non-profit institution on her application, and landed in the advancement office of The Menil Collection for two weeks in July. While she worked under The Menil Collection’s manager of advancement programs, Meghan Thrash, Reasoner was invited to speak with people from other departments, such as membership, curatorial, event planning and more. She also sat in on interdepartmental meetings, offering a macroscopic view of the non-profit organization’s multifaceted innerworkings.
“My coworkers strove to educate me on their mission and what working at a non-profit meant to them,” Reasoner said. “I was honored by their appreciation of my work there.”
Senior Avery Morris was also accepted into the internship program. Gameday Films, a sports media startup company founded by St. John’s alumni Jorge Ortiz, offered Morris an opportunity to marry her entrepreneurial spirit with a long-time passion for sports.
“The startup world is an entirely different animal than anything corporate; opportunities are created, and they require initiative,” Morris said. “My introduction to the intersection of business and sports was a major takeaway.”
Morris contributed to general tasks, such as working on a spreadsheet that contained sale leads, making posters and flyers, writing articles, and relaxing with her coworkers by watching old “Kinkaid videos” from Ortiz’s time as a St. John’s student. The Kinkaid video is a long-standing St. John’s tradition, in which students create a humorous video to play at a pep-rally before the annual highly-anticipated football game between St. John’s and its crosstown rival, the Kinkaid School. Such traditions perpetuate the strong connection between St. John’s and its alumni community, thus fostering amenities like the internship program.
“My favorite memory was playing mini-golf in the office,” Morris said. “We had one hole in the room, and whenever someone couldn’t focus they would stand up and play until they got it in the hole. Everyone would turn around and watch.”
Morris was offered a part-time job with Gameday Films during the school year to continue working for the company and writing for the blog. She hopes to continue to engage in the business and sporting world.
Conversely, Reasoner will keep her options open.
“While I thoroughly enjoyed my job, my career path remains undecided,” she said. “Nonetheless, I would highly recommend interning for anyone who wants to explore job opportunities, as there are usually a multitude of diverse positions in a single place of work.”
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