Summer SOX & SWA LUV

Week Eleven Already!  Chudik told you a bit what’s been up in Marketing, so here’s the update on down the hall in IA.

I work in Internal Audit, and most of our teams are from finance/ accounting/ technology backgrounds.  In case you aren’t familiar with IA, our basic goal is “verifying compliance, partnering for improvement”.  Summed up this means audit works every day to improve SWA by helping our teams become more efficient and comply with all the rules and regulations of our industry.  I’ve been working with the SOX team this summer, auditing the procedures deemed necessary by the passing of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act back in 2002.

In addition to my audit work, I’ve been able to meet with everyone in my department and learn about their wide variety of backgrounds and career paths.  I’ve gained some fantastic advice along the way, and am so grateful for the generosity, helpfulness, and kindness of everyone in SWA IA.

I got the idea to do these brief, 15 minute ‘one-on-ones’ as we call them from my friend in the department, Elise.  She’s actually an OSU grad as well!  When she interned here a couple years ago, she said meeting with everyone in the department was a great way to get to know everyone.  I’m glad I took her advice, and would highly recommend anyone interning do this as well.

SWA LUV over ChicagoI’m going to use my one more weekend of free flights to go visit my aunt and cousin in Newport Beach this weekend!  The travel part of my summer has been such a privilege.  I’ve gone to Chicago, St. Louis, Cleveland, New York City, and gotten to know Dallas quite well.  Since Chudik is flying home to bike Pelotonia (Shameless plug: check out her page pelotonia.org/achudik for more info on this awesome cause), Mama Dosen is flying in to visit and drive with me back to Ohio! We have an end of the summer “graduation” for the interns here at Southwest that she’s going to come to, then I’m going to to show her around my city before we pack up and hit the road.  It’s bittersweet leaving Texas soon, but my time here has been such a blessing and I couldn’t have asked for a better summer.

Till next time,

Dosen

 

 

Can’t Believe it’s Almost Over!

Hi Everyone!

Here we are, week nine of our internship! A lot has happened since we last checked in. Here is what I’ve been up to:

I am the Rapid Rewards Strategy and Development intern in the marketing department, and so far I absolutely love it! I am working on several different projects and having a blast. The biggest thing I am doing is creating a competitive analysis of all loyalty programs in the airline/hotel industry. So if you ever need advice on which loyalty program to join, I’m your girl 😉 I’m also doing a lot of research on how various companies market to their consumers through different advertising outlets, which has been a lot of fun for me. Because Southwest is currently in the midst of a merger with AirTran, I’ve also been able to help a lot with that in the loyalty program sphere, and it has been a really unique experience.

When I’m not working on different projects, I’ve had the opportunity to meet with various employees in the marketing department and learn more about what they do. This is something I recommend everyone to do during your internships. It has been really interesting learning how much the marketing department is in charge of (everything from sales to market planning to the digital team and data analysis), I’ve made great connections, and now when I walk past them in the halls I know another friendly face.

Some fun things I’ve done at Southwest:
1. We planned an intern challenge- It was the Marketing Interns Vs. Communications interns and did a bunch of fun outdoor challeges. I’m sure you can guess who won :)
2. Marketing movie day- One of our partners, Coke, treated us to the movies last week and the entire marketing team got to leave work early and see Maleficent.
3. Deck parties- Every Monday Southwest hosts deck parties put on by the different departments. They all have different themes, but usually consist of drinks, food, music, and raffles. One of my friends actually won a trip to Aruba last week!
4. I’ve also been able to travel to San Diego, San Francisco, New Jersey, New Orleans, and Las Vegas, all of which were unforgettable.

There is always something fun going on here at Southwest and I’m really going to miss it!

Alex

Alexandra Chudik

How We Ended Up in Dallas Part 2

Alex Chudik here- Here’s a little about how I got my internship and ended up in Dallas for the summer. I just finished my Junior year here in Fisher as a Marketing major with minors in Entrepreneurship and Economics. I can’t believe I’m more than halfway finished with college! I’m still looking for ways to extend my time here and thinking about maybe adding a major or failing a class (just kidding mom!)

After interning in Australia for Jones Lang Lasalle last summer, I knew finding an equally exciting internship would be difficult. When I started looking for positions last fall I struggled to find a company who’s values I really believed in. Luckily I was offered a position with Pelotonia, a non-profit in Columbus that raises money for cancer research through a grassroots bike tour held every summer. If you know me, you’d know how excited I was about this opportunity. I am so passionate about the company and love all of the employees. However, it felt a little to comfortable to me and I was ready to get out of my element and even more ready to get out of Ohio. When Dosen convinced me to apply for Southwest and I made it through the phone interview, they flew me out to Texas for a second interview and there was no turning back. Since then I’ve fallen in love with the company and couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the intern class. Here goes nothin!

Alex Chudik

How We Got Here (Part 1)

I was teasing Gerlaugh the other day because since moving to Texas, she has already started to incorporate “y’alls” and other Southernisms into her speech (I swear she said “Bless your heart” to the lady who put extra meat on her burrito at Chipotle the other day). But I guess I have to stop teasing because I caught myself saying “ya’ll” this morning. It sneaks into your vocab, really. So, ya’ll are probably wondering how in the world I ended up in Texas of all places this summer. It all has to do with the fact I A. wanted to work somewhere unique (and outside of Ohio) this summer and B. love this company and didn’t think twice about relocating so far away to intern with them.

The Alexs in our new apartment!

The Alexs in our new apartment!

Just a little background on me, I started at University of Dayton as a freshman, left half way through my sophomore year to study through St. Louis University in Madrid, and then transferred to Ohio State at the beginning of my junior year. Sometimes it was nerve-wracking and stressful, but ultimately I could not have asked for a better experience thus far. During my semester abroad and in summers between schools, I interned at Fifth Third Bank’s headquarters in Cincinnati, traveled to Africa & the Canary Islands, and went on a service trip to Honduras. Over the last three years, I have met extraordinarily talented and vibrant people, made amazing friendships, and learned from a wide array of professors and business leaders. This exposure to so many unique people is what helped me realize that I find my motivation in the people I surround myself with, whether that is at work, in class, traveling or just in day-to-day life activities.

People are sometimes surprised to find out that I am an accounting major, knowing that I am an extrovert and get my energy from the people around me (breaking accountant stereotypes, I suppose). One thing that I have always liked in the Accounting field is the diversity of companies and opportunities I can pursue. Every company in every industry, from retail to transportation to energy, needs finance people. Therefore, I have chosen to pursue a vibrant and people-centered company to intern with, Southwest Airlines.

Almost everyone who flies or is in business knows who Southwest is and how they defy industry stereotypes by thinking outside the box in their business operations. Southwest is a pioneer not only in the airline industry and its lean operating system, but in the way they treat people. The culture of SWA is one of the most unique of large corporations in the United States and the world. One of my favorite quotes of our CEO, Gary Kelly, is that “We are a customer service company that just happens to fly airplanes”. That quote really illustrates the importance of putting people, whether it is employees or customers, first. Ever since reading a case study about SWA my freshman year at UD, they have topped my list of dream companies to intern with/ work for.

SWA Headquarters

SWA Headquarters

Last fall, after an extensive online application process, series of phone interviews and a flight to the headquarters in Dallas, I was thrilled to find out I was offered a summer internship in Internal Audit. Ask my roommates, I actually cried of happiness then subsequently got a speeding ticket on my way home because I was so excited. My enthusiasm only increased when I found the other two Alexs had landed internships here as well and were moving to Dallas with me! People we meet here never believe we are all from Ohio, are roommates, and are all named Alex. (We’ve brought out our IDs on numerous occasions just to prove we are all, in fact, named Alex). I am looking forward to exploring Dallas and learning as much as I can from such an amazing company. I hope you enjoy following along on the adventures of the Alexs at Southwest this summer!

Cheers!

-Dosen

The Alex’s Take on Dallas

alex

To start things off, we’re the Alex’s. Alex Chudik and Alex Dosen to be exact. Both roommates at Ohio State in Fisher College of Business. Crazy right? Well it gets crazier. We have another roommate named Alex Gerlaugh, also in the business school. And to top it all off, the three of us coincidentally ended up accepting internships in Dallas, Texas for the summer and we could not be more excited.

Alex Gerlaugh will be doing Logistics for Martin-Brower, a supplier for McDonald’s this summer. Did you know, they use a different formula at McDonald’s for their Coke, so the rumors about it tasting better are actually true! Oh, the perks of living with Gerlaugh for the summer 😉

However, you’ll be hearing mainly from Alex Dosen and I (Alex Chudik) about our internships with Southwest Airlines and the No Limits program.

Until next time,

Chudik