Bryant’s Summer Internship Fellowship program, offered through the University’s Amica Center for Career Education, allows students— regardless of their financial circumstances — to pursue prestigious, top-tier summer internships that provide a foundation for success. The fellowships help expand access to unpaid or low-paying internships and enable students to explore their interests and prioritize their long-term career objectives.
“These fellowships offer deep, meaningful experiences that are incredibly impactful for both the students and the organizations they’re working for,” notes Kevin Gaw, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Amica Center. “When awarding the fellowships, we look for how the internships the students have applied for connect with their course of study, their academic preparation, and their goals.”
Conor Joyce ’19, a Politics and Law and Communication double major who aims to one day serve as an elected official, interned with the Housing Network of Rhode Island, a state association of non-profit community development corporations. At the Housing Network, Joyce conducted outreach and cultivated partnerships that supported the group’s initiatives.
The experience, he says, helped provide a real-world understanding of the issues he’ll need when shaping policy. “I’ve always wanted to find ways to help people, and my fellowship gave me a way to do that. Housing Network is trying to improve the lives of citizens and I’m glad I was a part of that.
"I knew this internship would help prepare me for public service and give me a valuable understanding of what’s going on with the people the government represents.”
“I’ve always wanted to find ways to help people and my fellowship gave me a way to do that."
This year the fellowships sponsored several international internships, including opportunities in the West Indies, China, and Israel. Ben Murphy '19, a double major in Chinese and International Business with a concentration in Global Supply, traveled to Shanghai with the help of his fellowship, where he worked as a business development intern with the growing Chinese restaurant chain BBQ Land.
Murphy, who came to Bryant to further his dream of working in China, helped refine the chain's plans for entering the U.S. market, set up vendor relations with American suppliers, and assisted in developing the company’s marketing campaign.
“It’s illegal for people from other counties to be paid for internships in China,” Murphy explains, “so the fellowship was really helpful. I was able to incorporate a lot of the different skills and subjects I’ve learned into my work helping the company transition to the U.S. Traveling overseas, and being able to do real business there, has helped me to grow as a student and as a person.”
“It was amazing to have an internship with a professional lacrosse team as a freshman.”
“We believe in experiential education and that learning by doing is one of the best ways to develop your career path,” says Amica Center Career Coach Amy Ames. “The early exposure to their chosen fields that students gain from the Summer Internship Fellowships helps them get one step closer to what they want to do with their lives.”
As a fellow, Finance student Alec Turner ’21, who is considering a career in sports management, interned with the Boston Cannons Major League Lacrosse team as an analytics and game day intern and gained invaluable experience behind the scenes of a sports franchise. Turner helped the team develop marketing strategies for reaching out to students and assisted with a wide range of operations.
“It was amazing to have an internship with a professional lacrosse team as a freshman,” he says. “I learned about what it takes to make a team like the Cannons run and I made some great connections.”
Interning with The Nantucket Project allowed Entrepreneurship major Marlee O’Keefe ’19 to work with nonprofit organizations to create a positive social impact. She helped to organize the group’s annual conference, which brings together leading thinkers and decision-makers to spark meaningful conversations that lead to meaningful change.
“As an Entrepreneurship major, the opportunity to be surrounded by established entrepreneurs, as well as passionate new entrepreneurs, was a rare opportunity that many people my age do not have,” says O’Keefe. “No matter where life takes me next, I will take with me everything I learned from my summer with The Nantucket Project.”
Her internship has confirmed for her that she wants to pursue a path that allows her to make a difference in the lives of others. “By working with groups like The Nantucket Project, I'm working with people who are dedicating their lives to what they care about,” she says. “That's inspiring to me.”