Gianna Paterno

Internship Spotlight – Gianna Paterno, Ernst & Young

Eller PDC Coordinator Student Stories

Gianna Paterno is a Finance and Entrepreneurship double major set to graduate in May 2020.  This summer she interned for Ernst & Young as part of the Risk Advisory Program in San Francisco, California.

What was a typical day like?

A typical day at the San Francisco office was very casual. Employees would scan into the office with their badge and proceed to their assigned floor. I would then reserve a desk to work at for the day, perferablly one with a great city view. Each morning I would spend about an hour or so responding to emails and checking my client computer. Throughout the day, my staff would provide work to complete independently. I also would attend virtual client meetings. If I had any free time, I would schedule a coffee chat or lunch with professionals within EY to learn more about the company. After lunch many of the employees play ping pong in the cafe before getting back to work. The work schedule for the advisory program was flexible as long as deliverables were completed in a timely manner.

What was your favorite part of the experience?

My favorite part of the internship experience was attending EY’s International Intern Leadership Conference. This conference was held in Disney World Florida and hosted over 3,000 interns from over 30 countries. We participated in various team challenge activities and got to hear from inspirational speakers such as an Olympic gold medalist, the CFO of the Warriors and more. This was such an incredible experience. I truly enjoyed networking with people from around the world as well as going to the Disney parks and resort with all of the interns.

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

My advice for students looking for a similar internship is to continually network. Leverage the relationships you currently have with people who work for companies or hold a position that you are interested in. Utilize linked-in or other platforms to learn more and research the job before diving right in. Establishing these connections helped me get my foot in the door for the internship and allowed me to gain insight on what the job entailed.

How did Eller prepare you for your internship?

Eller’s Business Communication classes prepared me the most for my internship. These classes taught me how to write and speak professionally which truly goes a long way. I was confident in my ability to speak to partners within the company and our clients. I also felt prepared to draft professional emails and deliverables due to the practice I had received in these courses.