Interns are stereotypically known for conducting coffee runs, filing and organizing documents, and doing the mundane tasks that no one else really wants to do. What a missed opportunity.
The impact that students and recent grads can have on your bottom line, company culture and growth is invaluable, especially at a small, growing company.
Give them a chance to contribute to high-stakes projects, bring new perspectives and do real work.
VFC’s goal is to help foster entrepreneurial mindsets in young Canadians. We preach about the value young people can bring to workplaces if they’re given the chance, through our programs. This year, we decided to walk the walk and lead by example.
This summer, we hired our largest cohort of interns to work at VFC. Five fantastic students shared their experiences, learned new things about themselves, and grew as young professionals.
They shared stories of challenges finding a job as a student, benefiting from a supportive and adaptable work culture, and succeeded in their contributions when given trust and confidence from the organization.
This experience shaped them individually and professionally, they shared. Whether it was giving them guidance on their future career paths or initiating personal development, they all found and brought a ton of value in their internships.
Lauren, Yi, Noah, Christina and Ziad proved that there’s immense value in taking a chance on students and young graduates. Their willingness to learn, grow, and foster an entrepreneurial mindset will help shape them into the next generation of working professionals.
Meet our Rockstar Interns
Lauren Martin is 20 years old and is going into her 4th year of Business Management with a Major in Human Resource Management at Toronto Metropolitan University. Growing up, Lauren wanted to be a Police Officer; she was enticed by the idea of having work variety and not having to do the same thing every day.
VFC hired Lauren as a Training and Events Assistant intern, which she described as her first real work experience in her field. This opportunity allowed her to learn about as many different areas of human resources as possible and gave her a taste of the training and development side.
After showing her interest, she had the opportunity to learn more about recruitment which helped prepare her for future roles as she is hopeful to seek a career in human resources, specifically recruitment and selection.
Yi Lian is 20 years old and a 3rd-year student studying Commerce at Queen’s University. She is enrolled in a co-op program and completed one of her placements as a Training and Events Assistant Intern at VFC. She expressed how applying for co-op placements feels like a full-time job in and of itself and that finding positions at an organization willing to hire students with little professional work experience can be challenging.
Yi previously completed an internship at a financial institution, which she described as a typical corporate environment, showing her that she wanted more creative freedom in her day-to-day role. She found that, at VFC, you have much more autonomy over tasks, creative freedom with projects, and more transparency of the organization’s behind-the-scenes.
Yi expressed how thankful she was to have worked at VFC and that her internship has been “one of the best jobs she’s ever had.”
Noah Orlandi is a 22-year-old student, who is graduating from Guelph University with a Marketing degree in December of 2022. Noah was hired as a Marketing Assistant which was his first experience working a full-time job in the marketing industry.
Noah wanted hands-on experience in marketing, especially social media marketing, and chose to intern at VFC because of the large creative freedom he would have with VFC’s media channels. Noah wanted a stretch beyond his comfort zone and describes how thankful he was for the diversity in marketing tasks assigned to him. He experienced many aspects of marketing, assisting with developing marketing campaigns, content creation, social media metrics, and so much more.
Noah says he is leaving VFC with a better awareness of his skills and opportunities within marketing, more confidence in his marketing skills, and much more excited for his next role in marketing.
Christina Morgan is 22 years old and recently graduated from the University of Waterloo with a Bachelor of Global Business and Digital Arts. VFC hired Christina as a Marketing Assistant Intern; before this position, she had little experience in marketing and felt privileged that VFC took a chance on her.
Christina has had other jobs in her field but felt that what is different about VFC is that she was pushed her out of her comfort zone and allowed her to contribute to multiple projects where she could showcase her strengths and work on improving her weaknesses. She felt there was always the opportunity for growth and that it was heavily encouraged.
Christina found that she values a challenge and the learning opportunities that come with it; her internship made her feel more confident and taught her not to be afraid to take the risk of trying new things because the right company will help support your development.
ZIAD EL DANI
Ziad El Dani is 26 years old and is currently in his third year of attending Western Governs University in Utah, taking a distance education program in Cybersecurity and Insurance. Ziad was originally hired as a Database Administrator assistant intern to help the IT department and took the position to determine if IT was something he wanted to continue doing long-term.
Ziad described how his past experiences in IT positions were filled with automated, repetitive, and mindless work. Ziad wanted to develop his technical skills and expressed how VFC has given him opportunities to do so, for example entrusting him with developing new database processes for VFC.
Ziad planned to take his experiences as an intern and apply them to a full-time job; however VFC saw Ziad’s potential and hired him as a full-time employee in the IT department.