CBEC 2013-14 Interns Have an Impact

The 2013-14 year marked the fifth consecutive year for the College of Business, Economics, and Computing (CBEC) Internship program at UW-Parkside.It was also an outstanding year for personal and professional growth for four social media and outreach interns (pictured from left to right above): Eric DuCharme (Major in Management Information Systems and Business Management with concentration in General Business), Nathan Whittaker (Major in Business Management with concentrations General Business and Marketing, Certificate in Sales), Joshua Frazier (Major in Business Management with concentrations General Business and Marketing,Certificate in Sales, Entrepreneurship, and Project Management), and Anh Nguyen (Major in Accounting, Business Management with concentration in General Business and Marketing, Certificate in Sales and Community Based Learning).

As in previous years, the students have marketed and promoted the College of Business, Economics, and Computing (CBEC) for the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in a variety of effective ways including outreach and social media. One of these activities included participating in new incoming freshman and transfer orientation sessions.Since May 2013 the four CBEC interns participated in CBEC advising and enrollment orientation sessions targeted at freshmen who have expressed interest in pursuing CBEC programs. The interns reported on the many diverse career building opportunities and activities they have experienced at UW-Parkside. These included winning a National Sales Competition at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, involvement in Parkside American Marketing Association (PAMA), judging at the DECA Wisconsin state wide competition, SEG (Solutions for Economic Growth) Service Learning community projects, Study Abroad programs, Executive in Residence, and much more.They also aided students in understanding major, minor and certificate programs as well as other university degree completion requirements. CBEC interns did the same for Transfer Transition days where they presented stories of their own college experiences and helped students register for the upcoming semester.

The interns accomplished their goal of representing the University of Wisconsin-Parkside in a most effective, positive, and professional manner.This led to a substantial increase in formal program declarations where students signed up to study CBEC majors, minors and certificates.

The social media and outreach interns also had a great impact on CBEC community outreach activities coordinated with the Senior Academic Advisor, Trudy Biehn. These outreach events resulted in meeting over 800 students, teaching professionals, and community partners within the Kenosha/Racine area post-secondary and secondary school systems that included Case High School, Wilmot High School, Tremper High School, West Bend West and East High School, Gateway Technical College, and College of Lake County.Under the guidance of Trudy and Dr. Peter Knight, Business Department Chair and Marketing Associate Professor, the interns prepared a presentation to interact with, motivate and prepare students for admission to an affordable quality education at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. To support their efforts, UW-Parkside Admissions counselors Lindsay Barbeau and Mirella Rivera also attended to answer questions. No doubt, the CBEC interns increased brand awareness of the excellence in education and opportunities for acquiring an outstanding career through the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

Updating, improving and maintaining all of the CBEC's social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn were other tasks the students successfully accomplished. CBEC experiences significant increases of followers by over 300%, helping to contribute to more brand awareness of the unique affordable programs offered at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.

Overall, CBEC students, Eric, Anh, Josh and Nate have indicated that their work and involvement in the CBEC internship program has played an important role in professional development and subsequent career opportunities. Nate Whittaker, one of the student interns noted, "Trudy, has given us a platform to develop our professional skills, and has taken great interest in our success." The internship has challenged the students to step outside of comfort zones to improve levels in oral and written communication skills, time management, team building and collaboration, and interpersonal skills. The final success story for the interns is that they have many of the necessary skills and qualifications employers are seeking in today's business world.

An added benefit to this story…..the Southeast Wisconsin area and the northern Illinois area are much more aware of the exceptional educational and career building opportunities of getting a degree from the College of Business, Economics, and Computing programs at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside!For more information regarding the CBEC Internship program, or if you would like a visit to your class or organization by the CBEC interns, please contact Trudy.Biehn@uwp.edu.

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