Meet Amanda, a guest blogger from Bethany College (WV)! Amanda is interning at Booz Allen Hamilton this summer and is sharing her experience here. If you would like to be a guest blogger for Intern Queen, then please comment below!
I have been interning at Booz Allen Hamilton for a month, and it has so far been a success. Going into the internship, I thought, “Wow, this is so awesome; I am going to work at a big consulting firm!” But in reality, I knew absolutely nothing about the company. The only things I knew were that Booz Allen Hamilton is a big shot in the consulting world and that a few alumni from my school, Bethany College (WV) work there. Despite my limited knowledge about the firm, I knew interning with Booz Allen would be a great opportunity.
The first week rolled by smoothly. It was unclear what my role in the beginning projects would be, so my advisor told me to start off simply doing research on Booz Allen and getting a feel for the company’s goals. At first, I was disappointed. I thought my schedule would be full of tasks that I needed to complete and deadlines that I needed to meet -- that was not the case. Of course, I am given tasks and expected to complete them, but in the meantime, I have had a lot of freedom to work on my own. Oddly enough, this is why I feel this was absolutely the best internship experience I could get. I have been pushed by my advisor to think on my own. My advisor does not make anything easy for me. When she gives me a task to complete, she gives me very little background information or advice. At first, I thought I would never be able to handle the projects she assigned to me without more instruction, but then I realized she was doing things this way for a reason. She was doing this because she wanted me to think on my own, to be creative and to act as a problem solver.
Interning at Booz Allen has given me invaluable tools that will help me to be successful in the future. When working at a firm like Booz Allen Hamilton, you are completely independent. There is no one to tell you how to do your job. If you do not know something, then you must use every resource available to figure it out on your own before you ask someone else to help you. I learned this the hard way. I would ask questions that I could easily find answers to on my own because I doubted my abilities. Now, I use every tool available to me to find a solution before I ask others for help. That way, I am not pulling them away from their own projects and responsibilities.
Being forced to think independently, critically and creatively has been the most notable benefit of interning at Booz Allen Hamilton. I have not been given the small tasks of making copies or proofreading documents. Instead, I am currently working on creating feature stories for external and internal use. Projects like this involve talking to multiple other employees and numerous stakeholders. Surprisingly, for a PR major, I can be very shy. Writing these articles has pushed me to talk to many different people, even those of very high corporate rankings, and that can be very intimidating. After completing my first interview, which was not very organized or thoughtful, I realized I should use these challenges to learn and grow. This was an opportunity to overcome my nerves and to make great networking connections!
One of the most important things I have learned from my internship experience is that Booz Allen Hamilton is a notable consulting firm not only because it is major player in the industry, but also because Booz Allen Hamilton has excellent values. I am extremely proud to be a part of their team and to be able to contribute to their efforts. Booz Allen Hamilton does a lot of work with non-profit organizations, and you can tell how much this work means to the firm. Booz Allen Hamilton gives back to the community in every way possible. In fact, I have been working closely with project leaders to learn about our contributions to services like the Wounded Warrior Project, which helps to provide support to U.S. veterans and active soldiers. We continually brainstorm ways to give back, and our efforts truly amaze me every single day.
I never had a solid idea of what I wanted to do when I finished school and graduated with a degree in public relations. After working at Booz Allen Hamilton, I am positive that I want to work for a non-profit organization. I would love to make a living by working for a company that makes a difference in the world, just like Booz Allen Hamilton does.