Preparing for Your First Day!

Hello, fellow Buckeyes!

Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Hunter Wise and I am a rising Senior Finance Major at FCOB. I am returning to Dana Incorporated this summer where I will be working in their Aftermarket business unit as a finance intern. Last year I was on their Internal Audit and SOX Compliance teams. In addition to my corporate finance experience, I just recently returned from an internship with a technology startup in Amsterdam, Netherlands this past summer where I did everything from marketing, to finance, to operations. With all that being said, I’m ready to spend this summer working and getting to tell all of you about the things that I’ve learned and will continue to learn about this coming internship experience.

Let’s get started!

The first day of an internship, whether it’s your first time with this company or your second, is a nerve-racking and intimidating experience. You’re filled with excitement about learning new things and nervous about making that first and lasting impression that will hopefully get you that full-time job or returning internship. All while these thoughts are going through your head the obvious solutions and tricks to be successful can pass right over your head. Don’t worry though, I’ve got the tips that helped me through my first internship and every other one that I’ve had since.

  1. “You can have anything you want if you dress for it.” -Edith Head
    1. People will respect you if you respect yourself. Dress for success and people will take note, not necessarily because of your nice clothes, but because feeling good about yourself and what you’re wearing adds an element of cool confidence that will get you far. The better you feel, the better you will be able to handle first day nerves.
  2. “If you are five minutes early, you are already ten minutes late.” -Vince Lombardi
    1. If you think that no one is going to notice whether you show up 1 minute before your start time or 10 minutes before, think again. Being there early shows you take an initiative and you’re eager to get started and learn. It also gives you a few extra minutes to gather yourself and chill out before the madness of orientation begins.
  3. Know your stuff!
    1. This one may seem intimidating, but it’s truly simple. You’ve been through the interviews and you know what this company does so make sure you show it. Don’t be afraid to speak up about something you may know or have read recently about what the company is and what they’re currently doing (market position, stock prices, M & A, etc.). This will be a good step towards showing your managers and bosses how passionate you are about this job.
    2. P.S. You can also use this knowledge to ask more complex questions that dig deeper into the business, which will help you stand out among your fellow interns.
  4. Take notes.
    1. Make note of the people that you meet, you may be working with them in the near future.
    2. Take note of the expectations the company has of the interns and use them later to match them up with your goals for yourself.
    3. All in all, just pay attention and make note of anything that you see as important or could be useful later.
  5. Get to know your fellow interns and befriend them.
    1. These are the people who you will most likely be sitting with day in and day out. They’re the people who are going to be there when you lose all of your work or you have a big breakthrough in your project. Don’t underestimate what they’re capable of just because they’re an intern like you. The chances are that you can learn a lot from them and their experiences. Not to mention the fact that these people could also turn into lifelong friends and future coworkers.
  6. Last, but not least, KEEP IT POSITIVE!
    1. No matter what you may be thinking during this first day or week. Despite the stress of the unknown and the magnitude of all the information and training that will be thrown your way, you should stay positive. Everything has a silver lining and I challenge you to always find it. A smile on your face and a sunny disposition will go far when it comes to your internship. It shows you’re able to handle the ups and downs and are able to adapt to whatever they throw your way.
    2. Employees who are willing to brave the storm and come out on top are indispensable to a company.

For any of you going into an internship soon, or have already started but want to step of the game, these steps will help. I wish all of you luck on this exciting journey and I will continue to update you with more tips and experiences as my time in my internship goes on.



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