The Enderun Internship Series: Alumni Experiences
The current situation and set-up of the Business and Hospitality industries have set a bleak hope in the hearts of its students. The widely implemented measures to control the pandemic have generated an unprecedented shift in these industries, causing students to put their plans on hold. The Office of Career Services, then plants the seed of hope in their hearts with the help of Enderun Alumni who have finished their Internships with The Internship Series in Enderun Colleges. The webinar was held for two one-and-a-half hour sessions and all Enderun students were invited to share in the attendance of these encouraging impartment of lessons, experiences, and things to look forward to in their future internships.
The first session of the internship series was held on the 4th of March 2021 with guest alumni speakers Julia Tabo, Cheska Mojica, and Chelsea Abcede.
Ms. Julia Tabo, BSBA Marketing graduate of 2019, talked about her second internship with Leo Burnet, an advertising company known for their McDonalds advertising. Julia had the opportunity to work with the teams that handled advertising for Mondelez, BDO, and Pfizer – with Pfizer as their main client of focus. Recounting her experience with these teams, she tells of her advertisement processing — which was most of her internship. From filing of ASCs (Ad Standards Council) documents to filming, she relates the advertisements we know and see to her role’s significance. She highlights the shooting of a Centrum commercial as one of her most memorable moments, even meeting celebrities such as Jericho Rosales and Angel Locsin, during her experience. Ms. Julia trails on about how magical it was to see everything behind the scenes.
| It’s better to overshare.
One of the insights she mentions, quoted above, emphasizes good communication with clients. While it is important to pay attention to detail and conduct proper research, supporting a good relationship with the clientele ties together all these efforts. Research too, however, plays an important part in the performance as this supplies the content. This experience, she highlights, greatly helped her experience the real world in a suitable environment for a young marketing career woman.
Next, Ms. Cheska Mojica of IHM HA Batch 2011 imparted lessons of a work-life balance despite the internship being a job experience. While she had three internships during her stay in the academe, she tells of her second internship in The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong, as a Club Concierge Intern. First, she lists her preparations including tips for housing with fellow interns. Then, she runs the audience down to her daily routine—from waking up at 4:30 in the morning, to her commute, and even enumerating her daily club lounge tasks. Afterwards, Ms. Cheska highlights her growth from the internship through a list of challenges that she had and how she overcame them.
| Service will always be in my heart, and it’s something I can take with me forever.
Being an intern in a foreign country, Ms. Cheska had her fair share of loneliness, home sickness, and even cultural discrimination. She was able to overcome this, though, by keeping an open-mind and exploring the culture of the country whilst being proud of her own heritage. She also mentioned the presence of office politics, which might come as a surprise to young workers at their first jobs. The key point in this segment, though, was her focus on letting herself grow both as her own person and as a professional hotel employee.
Lastly, for this session, Ms. Chelsea Abcede of Economics Batch 2020. Aiming for the stars, she prepared and had an interview with the UN — UNICEF. After she was referred to an agency for a tedious process of visa processing, Ms. Chelsea ended up at the organization Kids in the Game, New York as a Finance and Business Development Intern. While she was assigned to the Finance and Business Department, she was also able to “grow holistically” as her supervisor had allowed her to rotate between departments—including HR which she works under, at the present.
Analyzing company metrics, maintaining client lists, drafting campaigns, and doing other supporting activities were her tasks. Her key takeaway, though, was that she was there to grow with fulfilment.
| I was just there to grow to learn, to learn to grow, […] and to grow with fulfilment.
There were days when Ms. Chelsea felt pressure but inculcating the thought that, ‘she was not there to merely impress people but to learn’ helped her.
In the Q&A Session, questions revolved around preparations for the internship—from documents to finances—and their professional development. Ms. Abcede emphasizes on preparing everything for an organized and seamless flow of internship processing. Ms. Tabo talks on practical creative skills that she was able to utilize in aiding emergency editing tasks. Ms. Mojica promotes the benefits and great growth that one would experience in an international internship.
The last session was then held on the next day, March 5, 2021, with guest speakers Joie De Luzuriaga, Matthew Lim, and Sophia Aquino.
Ms. Joie De Luzuriaga had the opportunity to take an internship at the Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay in San Francisco, California during her second year of college. Focusing on taking as many subjects as she could and taking advantage of the job fair held in-campus, she was able to score an interview and a spot to work in the property. During the duration of her one-year stay, she was able to work in six positions from the Front Desk to Housekeeping and even specialized area positions in the property.
| If you’re gonna work hard, you might as well play hard.
She mentions how emotionally draining a job in hospitality is, and how separating your work emotions from the personal life is critical to keeping your wellbeing. A work-life balance is one of the most important points that she emphasizes in her talk.
Representative for the Culinary majors, Mr. Matthew Lim tells of his experience working at a Michelin starred restaurant: Plaza Athenée of Ducasse. He had been applying for a US internship, but that goal was eventually blocked by issues on applying for his visa. On the bright side, though, he was able to be assigned to a French 3-starred restaurant in Paris. Precise scheduling, meticulous mise en place, accurate organization, and diligent plating were his activities throughout his stay.
| “As Chef See told me, “When it is your first time to go to a place, use your eyes, mouth, and ears. Observe, taste, and listen.”
In Mr. Lim’s case, his challenges were more of physical challenges: getting cuts several times, early work hours, and even worn-out kitchen shoes! Thus, the lessons that he picked up along the way focused on confidence and respect – as needed in the professional kitchen.
For the last speaker of the series, Ms. Sophia Aquino, a current Technology Management student, shares her online internship experience with P&G. With the only work-from-home set-up in the series, she was able to show the audience how she was doing her job as a Customer Replenishment Analyst. Dealing with projects and big data, Ms. Sophia flashed her scheduling skills and tells of its importance especially working in a multinational company.
| Rather than corporate slaves, we are corporate athletes.
Collaboration, engagement, and ownership are the three words that sum up her experience of working in the company. There is an emphasis on good communication, teamwork, and taking up responsibility that makes up the lessons she learned during her internship. Along with this, though, she adds tips on taking initiative while staying humble enough to learn. She then puts up an example of her learning SQL coding in only two weeks. Context, Action, and Result – Ms. Sophia shares the CAR Method which helps one realize the value of their activities as a college student. Lastly, she motivates the audience to find their Unique Selling Proposition (USP) as a qualifying intern amongst other applicants.
“The hustle is definitely worth it.”
Like the first day, the Q&A session allowed for the audience to ask for job and location specific questions. Interestingly, one of the first few questions for this day was if it were all worth it – the experiences, hustle, and challenges. To which the three speakers agreed on that the hustle was all definitely worth it. Mr. Lim highlights that internship really is an experience rather than a direct source of income, and this experience boosts one’s young career.
As a whole, these alumni experience on internships centered on the theme of the program as a way of growing. Optimism, self-care, and open-mindedness were keys to their personal development as people during their experiences. Generously, they imparted this wisdom to our rose-cheeked, future industry professionals. Don’t be afraid! Step out of your comfort zone and learn. As you do, though, don’t forget to at least plan out and prepare for your next steps.
Thus, learning from the various industry set-ups, courses, places, and experiences of these alumni plant hope in the hearts of our isolated Titans. “Thanks to the speakers, Lux Lucis and its project heads Pearly Magto and Carmina Victoria, as well as the Office of Career Services, we can all at least start thinking about how to jumpstart our young careers through The Internship Program.