Cornerstone University Celebrates Cooperative Education and Internship Month in Michigan
by Danielle Barton (B.A. ’19)
Internships provide the opportunity to apply classroom theory in real-world settings. At Cornerstone University, 100% of traditional undergraduate students complete an academic internship or practicum.
Because February is Cooperative Education and Internship month in Michigan, we would like to celebrate a few of our students who are gaining practical experience in the workplace through an internship while using their God-given talents to help further them in their future career.
One student working as an intern in our community is Stefanie Sherman (B.A. ’19). Stefanie is currently interning as a communications specialist for International Aid. Located in Spring Lake, Mich., International Aid is a Christian organization that provides medical equipment, health supplies and disaster relief to global partners serving people in need.
Stefanie's primary responsibilities include elevating the exposure of International Aid's brand through digital media, graphics and print media resources. More specifically, she develops visual content and assists with promoting the accomplishments of International Aid in their quarterly newsletters and monthly publications.
"As a digital media student, there are so many things to learn and different directions you can take," Stefanie explained. "Working for International Aid has helped me narrow my focus on specific aspects of media that I have been able to hone and sharpen."
Stefanie further expressed that her hope is to one day take all the skills she has learned through her internship and use them in the context of an overseas ministry.
Serving as an accounting intern at Amphenol Borisch Technologies, Shane Heddy (B.S. ’18) is applying the skills he learned in the classroom to his internship. With locations in Grand Rapids, Michigan; Mesa, Arizona; Mexico and Canada, Borisch Technologies manufactures, designs and engineers custom parts for aerospace and military use.
Shane's role consists of merging finances between Amphenol Borisch Technologies in Grand Rapids and Amphenol Griffith Enterprises in Arizona. This involves analyzing day-to-day transactions and solving problems that arise when merging companies.
"There's only so much you can learn from an accounting textbook," Shane stated. "It's cool to see how everything I've learned in class applies to the real world."
Hope Ketcham (B.A. ’19) is also participating in a valuable internship this semester. She currently works as collections/curatorial intern at the Grand Rapids Public Museum. Serving the Grand Rapids community since 1854, the Grand Rapids Public Museum is the oldest and second largest museum in Michigan, holding nearly a quarter of a million artifacts.
Hope's work at the museum involves digitizing, photographing and handling the museum's database. She also prepares collections for new exhibits throughout the year. Along with that, she participates in the preservation and storage of artifacts, including the preparation of artifacts for outgoing loans.
"The most enriching aspects of this experience has been the hands-on learning," Hope said. "Whether it's exhibit installation, packing an artifact for an outgoing loan or cleaning a textile, I still have so much to learn, and this experience is invaluable. I am incredibly thankful for the museum professionals and my history professors who have helped prepare me for a future in this career."
Another student making an impact in the community through her internship is Claire Niegrarth (B.S. ’18). Claire is a marketing and communications intern at Love in the Name of Christ (Love INC). Love INC is a non-profit organization that strives to mobilize the local church to build relationships with those who are struggling to make ends meet. To enable those who need help, they offer a Life Skills Program to provide participants with access to groceries, mentoring opportunities and rides to medical appointments. The organization supports their mission through two retail stores in West Michigan.
As a part of her internship, Claire designs and schedules social media posts for the organization's Facebook and Instagram accounts. Along with that, she learns how to best showcase the brand and increases awareness within their target market.
"My favorite part about working at Love INC is the people," Claire stated. "They are loving, supportive and truly care about the work that they are accomplishing. Working here, I can take pride in what I do. I love getting to play a role in making peoples' lives better. From this experience, I know that in the future I would want to do something that directly makes a difference in society."
Through internships in marketing, communications, accounting and exhibition curation, Cornerstone students are making an impact in the local community.
To experience how you can help students succeed in the marketplace, register to attend a free employer internship training workshop on March 22 at Hope College.