Student Achievement

Experience Is The Best Teacher: Marist Students Share Their Internship Stories

Paisley Haddad '21

From public relations to television production to fashion forecasting, Marist students engage in rewarding internships.

May 26, 2020—Experiential learning opportunities are the cornerstone of a Marist education. Internships are key way for students to explore particular jobs as they think about their own career paths. In fact, 83 percent of Marist students participate in one or more internships while in school.

Three students recently shared their internship experiences—how they got the opportunity, what the work was like, and what they learned.

Carmela D’Arienzo ’21

Pictured is Carmela (right) with a fellow intern at a DeVries Global event.
Pictured is Carmela (right) with a fellow intern at a DeVries Global event.

Carmela D’Arienzo ’21 is a communication major with concentrations in public relations and advertising. She also has minors in interactive media and global studies. D’Arienzo has started her coursework for the 5-year Integrated Marketing Communication Master’s program at Marist, where she is learning valuable skills to bring to the workplace. This past summer, she interned at the New York office of DeVries Global, a public relations agency with clients such as Beats By Dre, Milk Makeup, Samsung, Pantene, and other well-known brands.

“Marist Career Services helped to facilitate my very first interaction with DeVries,” D’Arienzo recalled. During a 2018 Career Services Road to the Workplace event, D’Arienzo was able to introduce herself and build a relationship with DeVries Global. She was later afforded the opportunity at a Career Fair held at Marist to become re-acquainted with the DeVries team. “I believe that these two events helped me land the internship as I was able to build a connection with both the employees and my future supervisors,” said D’Arienzo. The latter interview process was a seamless experience for her. “After submitting my application, I received an email from Nicole Pace, the Internship Coordinator, to set up a phone interview. Shortly after talking with her on the phone, I received an email to come in for a second interview with my potential supervisors. The interview was great and they asked a lot of in-depth questions about me and my experiences. Minutes after the video call ended, I received a formal offer.”

When asked about a typical day in the office, D’Arienzo describes her duties as media monitoring, tracking content, creating mailers, and other client tasks. D’Arienzo had the opportunity to work with a fellow Marist student Scott Frisch, and two Marist alumni, Madison Gabor and Katie Johnson. During her summer at DeVries, she was able to work on Secret’s “Equal Work, Equal Sweat, Equal Pay” campaign which partnered the antiperspirant company with the U.S Women’s Soccer Team. “We planned a campaign in which we sent influencers and celebrities to go watch the Women’s World Cup in Paris as well as sent t-shirts and other products to many more influencers here in the US,” D’Arienzo explained. “Women’s rights is an issue I truly support and it was incredible to work on a project that aligned with my personal values and made a huge impact on the beginnings of my career in public relations.” With the experience and connections she gained from working at DeVries Global, D’Arienzo has learned skills that will help her in the rest of her journey as a student and beyond.

Daniel Oakes ‘22

Daniel Oakes is a sophomore sports communication major at Marist. This year, he had the opportunity to work at the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) Basketball Championship. This opportunity came about, in part, because of his ongoing work through Marist Athletics assisting with broadcasts in the ESPN Teaching Control Room. Though the circumstances surrounding the championship were unusual this year, Oakes was still able to get valuable experience. “Although I only got to work two days this year, it was still such a rewarding experience,” said Oakes. “We started our day by arriving at the arena and getting our assignments. If we were unfamiliar with what we were doing, somebody was there to teach us; it was a great learning experience.” The group was assigned to multiple games and press conferences that took place at the championship and even had time to watch some of the games on their own. “Overall, it was a really awesome experience to be able to work with different students and producers, and use equipment from other schools to broaden my range of knowledge of how different people/equipment work during their given broadcasts,” Oakes said.

Oakes was also honored with the opportunity to represent Marist in Florida in late 2019 at the MAAC/ASUN Challenger as a Production Assistant. “There were four Production Assistants—a student each from Monmouth, Rider, Iona, and Marist. We were tasked with filming highlights for the 4 MAAC teams that were in the Challenger and then learned how to edit on the program, EDIUS,” Oakes explained. Oakes carries the experience he gained from the MAAC/ASUN Challenger with him. “One person that had an impact on me was a man who worked there named Les, who taught us different tips and tricks that he uses when he edits, which I still keep in mind and use whenever I am editing something.”

Normally, Oakes works in the ESPN Teaching Control Room at Marist. After exhibiting a great work ethic and dedication to broadcasting, Oakes was asked by his supervisor Meghan Graham, Director of Athletic Multimedia at Marist, to become an intern for Marist Athletics. One project that stood out to him from his time in the program was a halftime video for Marist Basketball games that featuring himself and his fellow interns. “In the end,” Oakes recalled. “I think the video came out great and it even aired on ESPN+. It really cool to see something I that I put a lot of effort into on a live broadcast.”

His biggest lesson from the internship experiences? “If you really give something your all and put as much effort as you can into it, an opportunity will come along that can really change your life.”

Samantha Williams ’21

Samantha Williams ’21, a fashion merchandising major, with minors in business and global studies, spent last summer at the athletic apparel company Puma. For the native of Reading, Massachusetts, working at Puma headquarters in nearby Westford, Massachusetts was a perfect opportunity. As a wholesale apparel merchandise intern, her duties included maintaining and organizing line plans, doing competitor research, checking in samples, and working on special projects like trend forecasting. Her supervisor even selected her to work on a presentation that would be given at the company’s European headquarters in Germany. “I helped her compile trend forecasts that she was able to share with senior leadership in the company,” said Williams.

Williams had great support in securing the placement at Puma. “Marist’s Career Services helped me through the whole process from resume revisions, to mock interviews, and follow up emails,” she recalled. “Stephanie Graham personally met with me to go over anything career related. That really stood out to me.”

The biggest takeaway from her summer at Puma? “Teamwork is key, collaboration is important, and marketing skills always come in handy.”

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