Major: Industrial Engineering
CFS Program: Business Field Studies
When I was preparing myself to start interning at CME Group, I was feeling mixed emotions. I was excited to start working at a company with a market cap of 23 Billion dollars. I was psyched to be surrounded by intelligent people and immerse myself in the financial services world. However, with that excitement came a huge knot in my stomach the weekend before I began my internship. The fear of failure was constantly haunting me. The anxiety of starting later than every other intern and breaking into already formed cliques ran through my mind. I was thrilled yet scared, and all these feelings followed me to the first day of work.
Now, I’m at the start of my 5th week as an intern at CME Group, and a lot has changed. I realized that everyone around me is willing to help and reach out if I do the same. I found that my directors and managers want me to succeed and do their best to make the most out of my internship. The work that I am doing is substantial in the overall process of CME Group and not just something to pass my time. I’ve grown to really enjoy the company and the people that I have gotten to meet and work with.
Now that I’m halfway done with my internship, these are a few things that I’ve learned along the way:
- Not all internships are created equal, but make the most out of what you have. My internship experience has been great so far but I’ve heard plenty of horror stories from friends and colleagues. However, even the bad ones have good aspects and by focusing on the good, your overall experience will be better.
- People are willing to help. One thing I wish I had ingrained in my mind before I started was that people like to help. Current employees love having interns around and many of them would love to give you advice and help out as long as you reach out to them. They are busy but will always do their best to make time for you if you show them that you are willing to make time for them.
- The other interns are your friends. For some reason, I went in thinking an internship was a battlefield where one victorious intern would rise out of the ashes claiming the return offer. This is the complete opposite. Don’t get me wrong, you should still be competitive in your work and be the best you can be, but the other interns are your friends. Not only will you guys make each other better but the summer experience will ten-folds better.
- Experience and networking are your goals. Money is great and if your internship is paying you, then that is wonderful. However, the goal of the internship is to gain as much exposure to the industry and meet as many people as you can. Making money is a plus but remember which goals are primary.
This summer is flying by so I hope that I take my own advice and make the most out of my internship in the remaining weeks.