Students learn about business, giving through internships

FORT WAYNE — Two Trine University students learned about philanthropy, business and service through summer internships with Fort Wayne’s Ambassador Enterprises.

Ambassador is a for-profit, philanthropic equity firm that invests in businesses, nonprofit organizations and their leaders. The organization has a portfolio pf 15 companies and has helped optimize more than 1,100 organizations.

Carly Osinski, a senior marketing major from Noblesville, said she heard about Ambassador’s program from older students in the Ketner School of Business.

"They highly recommended that I look into the program and interview with an AE representative. I went through two rounds of interviews and received the internship offer,” she said.

She was placed at one of Ambassador Enterprises' affiliate companies, The Summit, a shared campus of socially minded organizations that work together to benefit the community through academics and education, economic development, health and wellness, social sustainability and spiritual vitality.  Her main project was to standardize, optimize and market the event and meeting spaces on The Summit campus.

“By the time I left at the end of summer, the rental agreements I worked on, the booking process I cleaned up and the marketing collateral I created were all implemented and I was able to help train employees on how to use them,” she said. “It was a great feeling knowing what I worked on during the summer actually made a positive difference in the company.”

A faculty recommendation earned Emma Lucas, a senior from Hamilton majoring in professional writing and English studies, an interview with Ambassador. As she went through the interview process, Lucas questioned how well an internship that seemed to be oriented toward business and finance would fit.

After talking it over with Amy Nicholls, dean of the Jannen School of Arts and Sciences, she decided to continue the process. Ambassador assigned Lucas to its Corporate University department, where she worked mainly for the Professional Development Series team.

“I completed a leadership training program called Listen!, which focused on explaining the importance of true listening in the workplace and how to overcome distractions and noise that prevent good listening,” she said. “I also completed several small programs that are basically book reviews/discussions, which promote continuing education for Ambassador Enterprises employees. Dr. Larry Rottmeyer also created a project for me concerning the band U2, looking at their lives and their music through the lens of a Christian. I had the opportunity to present this project to my fellow interns.”

“I have had many courses here at Trine where I have strengthened my writing skills, and this internship did that for me as well.”

On Fridays, both interns took part in Development Days. Activities on those days included discussing comprehensive personality assessments they had completed before the internship — helping them better understand their strengths and weaknesses, and how to work better with others — as well as completing community volunteer projects and visiting companies such as One Lucky Guitar, Sweetwater Sound, Vera Bradley and the Community Harvest Food Bank.

“No matter what activity we partook in on Fridays, all of the interns left feeling energized, inspired and better prepared to take on the real world,” Osinski said.

During their final week, the interns visited and learned about various businesses in Indianapolis.

“The time in Indy was amazing and I got to see many career avenues for myself that I would have never considered,” Lucas said. “I grew so much through this internship and I would absolutely recommend it to other Trine students.”

“My time as an Ambassador Enterprises intern was an experience that changed my life and developed me professionally, relationally and spiritually," Osinski said.