Internship Spotlight – Josh Dearborn, IBM

Eller PDC Coordinator Student Stories

Josh is a Management Information Systems major graduating in May 2018. This summer, he worked as a Client Relationship Representative for IBM in Dublin, Ohio. IBM offered Josh and his fellow interns relocation and housing stipends, and provided living situations for interested interns. Josh lived in an apartment in Columbus with 4 other roommates. 

How did you land this internship?

I found out about this summer internship opportunity with IBM after attending the U of A Fall Career Fair. I learned of the IBM Summit Program, did some research on my own and was eager to get involved with the leader in IT Services. There was a rigorous 4-month application and interview process.  The interview process included an in-depth online application and 3 different Skype interviews with IBM HR and Sales Leadership.  While the Skype interviews were stressful as I wanted to impress the interviewer, I have to say that I really enjoyed the conversations I had with them as I got the feeling that IBM really wanted to get to know me and why I would be a good fit for IBM. I was incredibly fortunate enough to make it through the process as I accepted the written offer in December.  I secured the Internship location of Columbus, Ohio in February when I was studying abroad in Rome during the spring.

What was your favorite part of the experience?

Working for a fortune 100 company this summer has been an incredible opportunity in that I was able to receive training from highly qualified professionals in a real-world setting. Getting exposed to thought leaders, subject matter experts, amazing sales leaders, game-changing technologies, and a diverse group of interns far exceeded my expectations. Through all the exposure I had, my favorite part was being so involved and connected in the IBM community. The networking opportunities and connections I believe will help me get my sales career off to a great start! I stand by the quote; its not what you know, but who you know, and I can vouch for that after working so closely with veteran and experienced IBM’ers all summer long.

What advice do you have for other students seeking a similar internship?

Start looking now! Many large IT companies have very established internship programs, with that said they are in high demand of students who are ambitious and willing to pursue them. I recommend searching through LinkedIn for individuals who work for the company you are interested in, and shooting them a message to learn about their career and how they got to where they are today. Getting in touch with current employees, in a career that interests you is an awesome way to get exposure and learn what it would be like to work there. And if your networking goes well, you could get passed on to a superior in the internship program and you have just grown your contact list.

How did Eller prepare you for your internship?

From the get-go of my internship, I realized the education and preparation that I have received from the Eller College of Management was stellar, and set me so far ahead of my fellow interns. On many occasions, I would be working on a team with other interns from other top universities all over the country and their knowledge base and experience with presentations was lacking in comparison. Undoubtedly, my semester in BCOM prepared me with the leadership and organizational skills necessary to lead a team to success. The business principals I learned in MGMT were directly applicable and helped me to analyze IBM and fit in with their company culture. One of the most critical skills Eller has prepared me for was the time management necessary to thrive in a corporate job. There were many occasions where my team was pressed for time preparing for a client presentation or sales call, but that didn’t overwhelm me as I have thoroughly learned how to manage my time wisely juggling Eller coursework and time to collaborate with my peers for projects and exams. Going into my senior year I am even more motivated to learn from my professors because I know first-hand how relevant it will be in my future career!