Internship Spotlight – Isabelle Wakeham, Ross Stores Inc.

Eller PDC Coordinator Student Stories

Isabelle Wakeham is a Business Management major and will graduate in May 2019.  She interned this summer for Ross Stores Inc. as the Assistant Buyer Intern in Los Angeles, California.

How did you get this internship? I found the Ross externship during my sophomore year in a club called TREND. Through doing this externship I got an internship offer for the following summer.

What was a typical day like? There were no “typical” days! Every day was surprising and we never knew what was going to happen. If I had to make a mock day I would say you go into the office, check and reply to emails from vendors, grab a to do list from your buyer, go to a couple vendor appointments, and end the day with making sure the purchase orders are all correctly dated.

What was your favorite part of the experience? My favorite part of the internship had to be the vendor appointments. I loved getting to know the faces behind the labels you see on the rack in Ross. I learned so many fun behind the scenes things about clothing items and about how vendors work.

If you worked on a big project, please describe it below: I had to present to Senior Management at the end of the internship. Our presentations were based on a suggestion we had for our division in the buying office. I worked in the Maternity division and gave some suggestions on growing the maternity dress business. It was really fun to figure out what was working and what wasn’t then being able to give my opinion and see some things that I suggested come to life!

What did you find most challenging about your internship? The most challenging aspect of my internship was being placed in a completely new environment than I was used to. I had never been introduced to the buying world before stepping foot into Ross. We were given a list of things to accomplish and it was challenging trying to figure out ways to get this list completed. However, our buyers helped us get through it and were always there to answer questions for us.

What advice do you have for other students looking for a similar internship? If you are looking for a buying internship I would definitely reach out early. Even if you are an underclassmen, you should contact the recruitment personnel early on and create a relationship with them so that when you are the correct year, you already have a foot in the door to get the offer.

How did Eller prepare you for your internship? BCOM 314 really helped me gain the confidence to be able to talk to senior management  without being too nervous. I also was told that my presentation skills were better than what they expected and this is because of BCOM!

Did your internship employer provide housing or transportation assistance? My employer provided resources for me to secure housing and/or find a roommate.