Ashley Reyna is a senior Management major who will graduate with her bachelor's degree in December 2016. Throughout her time at Texas Tech, Ashley has been involved in a variety of student organizations, including: the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society, Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society and the Pi Beta Phi Fraternity. Her time with these organizations has helped Ashley gain valuable experience needed to acquire and excel at her recent internship with the Sewell Automotive Company in San Antonio. The skills she gained at her internship and the lessons she's learned from her courses at the Rawls College have brought Ashley a few steps closer to achieving her career goals. Find out how she secured the position, what she got out the experience and what advice she has for students on the internship search in the Q&A below.
What were your responsibilities at Sewell?
Initially, Sewell wanted us to learn every single aspect of their dealership. We started on rotations throughout the entire dealership, ranging from shadowing technicians and painters to financial advisers and managers. This allowed us to completely understand, and become a part of, the dynamic of Ken Batchelor Cadillac. After a six-week period of rotations, we were assigned positions for the rest of the summer in different departments. From there, we started training hands-on and eventually were able to work alongside the Assistant Service Managers or Salesmen. While all of this was underway, we were assigned projects to work on throughout the summer. Each project was different depending on the intern, but they all had to do with dealership efficiency. At the end of the semester, we presented our solutions to Ken Batchelor, along with the dealership managers.
How did the skills and knowledge gained at the Rawls College transfer to your internship?
My management courses prepared me for the internship as a whole. Knowing specifics about different business structures allowed me to better understand the way that Sewell functioned as a company. Another thing that the Rawls College (specifically my management courses) taught me was to think outside of the box and try to look at situations from different perspectives. That was exactly what Sewell was looking for. They needed fresh minds to come in and help evaluate their efficiency, productiveness and capability as a whole. Being unbiased and essentially an outsider, it was exciting to come in and help revamp the dealership. One skill that all of my classes has stressed is interpersonal communication. The ability to successfully talk with people was absolutely vital in my position with Sewell over the summer. My job consistently had me talking to managers, technicians, interns and customers.
What opportunities did the Rawls College provide to help you obtain your internship?
I was initially introduced to Sewell in my Organizational Management class. A recruiter came to speak to my class. His presentation piqued my interest, and I made plans to visit their booth at the Career Expo that the CMC puts on biannually. The Expo gave me the opportunity to introduce myself to Sewell and make a lasting impression that otherwise I would have missed.
What advice would you offer students looking to obtain an internship or full-time job?
The best thing that anyone can do when looking to obtain an internship or a full-time job is to be yourself. Every company has their own culture and way of operating. Every company also has recruiters and employees that know what kind of people would thrive best in their workplace. Being yourself allows the company to really evaluate how you as an individual would fit into the company culture.