As hard as it is to believe, I am already over one month into my internship at Progressive. I am happy to say that it has been a joyous learning experience thus far.
The first day made me a little nervous. After an orientation with the other interns, I met my mentor for lunch, and then was taken to my cubicle. I would be working in Treasury. The campus where I work is very large, so I was wondering how I would ever find my way around. I was afraid I would get lost if I left my cubicle.
I met my manager, who explained to me what my objectives would be, such as taking advantage of the outside activities planned for interns and companywide events. He provided me with resources to learn about statutory accounting, which was a new concept to me, as I am accustomed to GAAP standards. I also became familiar with the culture of Progressive, which lives by five core values: Integrity, Golden Rule, Objectives, Excellence, and Profit.
In fact, the culture has left an indelible mark on my short time at Progressive. From the moment I arrived for my first day, everyone has been friendly and accommodating to me, treating me as a regular employee. In fact, we were told on the first day that we should not feel like interns. This type of support from Progressive has given me confidence in my abilities, which has helped me whenever I encounter a challenge.
As my first week went on, I started to get acclimated, and the nerves went away. I joined the fitness center, and even went for an outside run with my manager. I have worked on several projects through the duration of my internship. After learning terminology and the language of the insurance industry, I was given several excel assignments. One of these projects, for example, involved filtering and organizing data across the insurance industry, preparing it so that it could be analyzed in an effective fashion. I am also assisting my manager in a Financial Analysis course that will be taught at Progressive’s training facility in July. For this, I have familiarized myself with the content for the class, and have assisted in updating the course material, such as the power point slides.
Outside of the day-to-day grind, there have been unique learning opportunities. I took a course, “Dollars and Sense” at the training facility with the other accounting interns. Here, we received in-depth background on the different areas within the company, and were able to listen to and ask questions to the CFO and other key decision makers at Progressive. In addition, I met with a couple of Progressive people in the Real Estate department, where I learned about Progressive’s sustainability initiatives and building operations. Since the first day, I have been encouraged to seek out areas of interest outside my department, and my manager has been more than helpful in finding contacts for me to schedule meetings.
It has only been over a month, but I could go on forever regarding my adventurous time at Progressive. I have met many helpful and genuine people, and I anticipate meeting and befriending even more.
I’ll keep in touch. I hope everyone is having a great summer!