Week 9 | Overall Experience
My experience at the internship was overall pretty good. I really enjoyed having freedom to work in this office. Sometimes I’ll get the office all to myself and that’s always great because I love I’m happy that Vince likes me so much that we are talking about a full time job. It’s something that looks good on my resume and it’s good experience. It’s not my forever job but I feel like I’ll enjoy the journey to build myself as a designer and add a more extensive skill set for me to grow.
Week 8 | Talks About Jobs
Not too long into the internship, Vince asked me about my other job. I work in retail at a company named Telco. I’ve been working there for over 4 years. I started right before I graduated high school. I only work 2 days. All day Saturday and half the day on Monday morning. So Vince asks me how much I get paid, how often, and how many hours I work. I let him know and he calculated it to see I get around $500 a month, give or take. He then says that if he were to pay me $25 to $50 a week I could quit my job at Telco. He basically wanted me to work more at the internship. Which I told him I don’t know because when I don’t know how to feel about something that’s my go to answer. I basically told him I’m not good on the spot and that I would think about it but in my head I was genuinely curious as to if he really thought that was a good offer. I don’t like to talk bad about people but this was probably the dumbest thing I had heard for a while. Also my experience at the internship was overall a good one but there’s always bad that comes with the good. Later that week he brought up the topic again and had completely changed his answer to $700 a week. So at the time I didn’t take the offer too seriously but I thanked him regardless. I told him that even if I did quit it wouldn’t make much of a different since I’m still in school. And that we could revisit this conversation once school was over. But it was a pretty interesting experience.
Week 7 | Redesigning
Being able to do what I went to school for is actually great. I love that I can show Vince and people that I barely know my designs. It’s a good feeling when you actually are confident in your skill set and people actually like the stuff you do is amazing. Vince wanted a sample of design ideas for a booklet for Sunright Solar that he wanted redesigned. One day I did 3 pages to see if he liked the direction it was going on. Thankfully, he did and I was able to redo that whole 26 page document. It took me some time. Around 3 weeks to get everything done and edited with school and also working retail on the weekend. He has no idea how long it takes because I told him that things like this take like a month or 2 in school with all the other classes people have to worry about. And then he asked me if I could be done by next week and I said no, because honestly that wasn’t possible. It wasn’t the only thing I was doing and I don’t want to lie or push myself more than I already am. I told him that it would take 3 weeks he was surprised. He trusted my instincts and didn’t give me a problem or anything which is great. But regardless I like to be straightforward with a timeline when I know something can’t be done.
Week 6 | More Firsts
My first full day for internship was Thursday, October 17, 2019. It was a fully loaded day. We had interviews for more interns that morning. I was tagging along with Vince, so I could see how to interview people because eventually he wanted me to interview interns as well. I had my little notebook and a pen ready to go. I took notes on how to conduct the interview and the interns themselves. I felt so out of place because realistically I JUST started but to the outside eye it would look like I had been there for a while. The interviews went really well and they both good candidates. Since the company is so new, of only about 4 or 5 people we had room to expand the team.
Vince wants to grow the team organically. He wants people who are ambitious, driven and hard working. As does any company. He likes to push people out of their comfort zone. He thinks it helps people grow which I completely agree with. That day I also updated all the passwords to all the sites they use. He wanted all the passwords to be the same so I updated every single one. I guess that intern stuff that nobody really wants to do but has to be done. They have the emails and passwords all in a google document so that anybody that needs any of the logins has it there. I also met some more people in the office that day. Not from Sunright Solar but from Voro Homes. Since from a day to day basis that’s usually who is mainly in the office. I met Danielle, Lauren, Carlos, Renee, Luis, Joranimo and Edwin. I’m pretty much the baby there, except for a couple people but mainly everyone is in their 20’s which is cool.
Week 5 | First Day
October 15 was my first day of internship. I had class. So after school, I went to the internship. I got there a little early because I wanted to give a good impression, and I really hate being late when people are expecting me. I called Vince and asked him if I should go to the office. He told me he was out looking at new spaces for Sunright Solar. They were thinking about getting a new office we’re in a shared office space. So he told me to get lunch and he would be back in about 45 minutes. Me being me I didn’t want to leave because I didn’t really know my way around the area yet and did not want to get lost. (I’m really bad with directions). I basically was just on my phone the whole time because I didn’t take my laptop. It’s heavy and I didn’t want to carry too many things.
When Vince came back we stayed in the lunch area and he told me what my responsibilities would be. I would be in charge of updating a system called Pipedrive, a system of all of their customers and what stage their solar projects are on. I would be updating customers on said projects and I would be designing, or should I say redesigning paperwork and documents for the company. Vince pretty much hated everything that was previously done. It was “designed” on a word document. It just didn’t work and nothing was organized. I had my work cut out for me but I was ready for a challenge.
Week 4 | Scheduling Process
So since I got the job for Sunright Solar, I decided to cancel the interview for Elliot Berman Textiles. Which now that I look back on it, was kind of dumb. Just because I did exactly what I wasn’t supposed to do. Put all my eggs in one basket. I figured since he told me I got the job I didn’t need to go on the other one. And at that moment, I was just looking for an internship to complete to my hours for the class. If I am ever in a situation like that again, I definitely will take the interview because I need to see what’s a good choice for me.
I went in that next Tuesday after class to go make my schedule for the internship. We had already started to cover this in the interview but we needed a better talk about it. So basically, I went it and to see Vince. I couldn’t find his office for like a half hour because it’s a WeWork space, which means that all the offices are for different companies and I didn’t know where anything was. I had met another employee, Marcus that day. So when I couldn’t find Vince even though I called him and he said he was going to come get me but didn’t, I found Marcus and asked him instead. He showed me the way and I was very grateful. There I met Alan and Adrian. I thought they worked for the company also but later realized that they work for a different company but just work in the same office. We share the space with a real estate company. If I’m not mistaken I believe it is called Voro Homes. We then talked scheduled and set on Tuesday 3-6, Thursday and Friday 10-6. I sent it to HR for it to be approved but I didn’t know how long it would take. Yes, I forgot to ask but I have this think where I feel like I’m being annoying even though it’s just a question. It’s a bad habit that I have now learned to stop.
Week 3 | Interview with Sunright Solar
My interview was on Friday and I had never been more nervous in my life. I almost felt like throwing up because of the nerves. September 20, 2019 I woke up for my interview. It was for 11am. I picked my outfit the night before because you know how it is as a girl to pick out outfits, especially when you are nervous. I packed my bag and was on my way. I stopped by the school to go to Fed Ex. I wanted to print out a few copies of my resume. I left early enough so I was able to do this with time to spare. Thankfully my interview was at 25 Broadway so that was super convenient! When I got into the building I needed a pass to go upstairs, I told the security that I was here for an interview and showed them the messages I received from my scheduling and I was led to the elevator, to the fifth floor. The building is GORGEOUS. Kind of the way you would see in movies and partially wished I could dress up everyday and go to work everyday.
I called Vince (the person who would be interviewing me, from what I read in the message) to let him know I was here. He came to get me and he introduced himself and led me to the lunch area. He asked if I wanted any water, tea or coffee. He asked for my resume and he told me he was going to send me an interview questionnaire to my email and he would come to get me once I was done. I was surprised by that because I had never heard of that for an interview before. But I filled it out, it was questions such as what do you know about the company, why are you interested in solar, and rating your skill set from 1-10 for different categories. When I was done, Vince came to get me and we went to an empty conference room with a nice couch and chairs. He told me he had looked over my portfolio website and loved my work. He thought it was fun and exciting and exactly what the company was looking for. I was constantly overthinking that website and thought it was crap compared to my other designer friends I’ve met in college. But he really enjoyed it. He enjoyed it so much that he hired me on the spot! He told me I know you thought you were coming in for an interview but my work spoke for itself. It was a paid internship, $500 a month which was even better because o was actually getting money for it. It was not what I was expecting! I mean… I don’t really know what I was expecting but it wasn’t that. It was just a happy moment for me. I called my mom, my sister and my boyfriend and they were all so excited for me. It was a really good day.
Week 2 | Applying for Internships
During my second week of my internship class, I started applying for different positions. Sites I used to search for internships was Chegg.com/internships, LinkedIn, ZipRecruiter and Craigslist. The design internship I was originally interested in, was one for Milk makeup that I found on LinkedIn that closed before I could apply so that was unfortunate. BUT I didn’t lose hope or as the professor says, put all my eggs in one basket. I continued to search and applied for over 20 or so jobs. I wasn’t getting any hits at first but I realized that I didn’t check my messages in my Chegg Internship account! Sure enough I had two responses and I was so excited because I was worried time wise about being able to finish my internship on time.
One was for a company called Sunright Solar which was a company that installed solar panels into the roof of homes to help save the environment and client’s money. I scheduled an interview with Natalie on that Friday.
As for the other company, Elliot Berman Textiles, this is a fashion company that works with fabrics from Italy and France. So basically my dream. I would be creating posters, updating social media and the website. So I scheduled that one for Monday since the times for Friday would be too close for comfort for my other interview. I was looking forward to these interviews but I was SUPER nervous since I had never been on an interview before. It was a new thing for me and I didn’t want to mess anything up.
During the summer, I worked on some of my past work. I wanted to better my skills and fix the problems I had on old projects for practice. Now, having more knowledge on design, I wanted to use that to my advantage. I used ww.wix.com to create a portfolio website. I wanted to put some of my favorite things on there to attach to my resume so that it would look a bit more professional since I hadn’t taken the portfolio class until now. I also worked on my resume because I had never created one before. I know super late, but I never had to or didn’t have much experience being at the same retail job for four years. But I added some of my responsibilities for the job I do have, to fill up more of the page that will be deleted once I have more experience in the design field.
https://chenriquez0307.wixsite.com/website <— my website that I am very proud of but can’t wait to fix and add more to!
My first week of the internship class, I created a LinkedIn account. I started working on my account, adding classmates and professors into my connections. It was a site I haven’t used before and found super informative! I searched for internships I might be interested in. Some of my interests include: fashion, beauty, and editorial design. Not to say those are my only interests because that would be far from the truth, but that was at the top of my list searching for an internship. I was nervous to apply for internships, so subconsciously I thought that my resume or my portfolio was never “perfect” which is crazy but that my was mind set at the time. I started to apply my second week of the internship but I will speak more about that in my next blog post!