I took this picture in December 2016 while traveling in the coastal rainforests of Belize.  The image on the building depicts two Belize Cacao Lords straddling the entrance to one of the few remaining chocolatiers following the process of their Mayan ancestors. The gesture depicts their value of encouraging acceptance yet only through dedication and perseverance. Minutes before this image was taken, the door had been closed the extent of our visit. The Mayan chocolatier entered an establishment of acceptance through dedication and perseverance-mirroring a symbolic moment in my life.

Only minutes before, I received an email which I had been working towards since early 2014. The symbolism of a door opening into an establishment of acceptance through dedication and perseverance symbolized the opportunity I had just received. After multiple applications and interviews, rejections and conflicts, the door into working for AEG Worldwide had just opened. This email informed me of acceptance for the AEG Global Partnerships Internship, an opportunity that puts students at the headquarters of all AEG Worldwide operations.

AEG Worldwide is the world leader in sports and entertainment with multiple divisions, subsidiaries, and over 200 assets under their name. Global Partnerships is the division at the center of it all, responsible for creating one-of-a-kind sales and marketing platforms for partners to activate and promote their brands. I quickly considered the implications of time. My previous (unsuccessful attempts) to work at AEG resulted in other internship opportunities. These opportunities created a foundation of knowledge and experience, preparing me to be a successful candidate for the AEG position. Furthermore, I considered how the conclusion of this internship would align with the culmination of my college experience.

Interning at AEG within Global Partnerships was an invaluable experience and now has developed into my career after graduating from Chapman University with a B.A. in Strategic and Corporate Communication and minor in Business Administration. My key intern responsibilities included prospect business research and proposals, internal consumer relationship management software development, and business operation integration. Through these three main categories supplemented by my Chapman education, provided personal development, software skill development, and an understanding of the mechanics of a successful international business over five months.

As my first time working for an international company with hundreds of employees, I had to grow accustomed to a corporate atmosphere. This was a huge personal development for me to understand and apply myself accordingly. I sought out projects and assignments, offering help to all Vice Presidents and Senior Vice Presidents whenever possible, and asking questions for clarification when uncertain. As the first intern to work with Microsoft CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software it provided me with insight on how such a large business could work so fluidly. An internal control system, this CRM training will benefit me throughout life as most businesses use it for internal control of inventory, assets, and employee allocation. Working directly with the Senior Vice President of Sales and Activation within Global Partnerships, I attended weekly meetings which provided real-life application of organizational management and communication theories taught within the classroom.

Outside of the internship itself, the greatest opportunity presented from this experience was networking. Business at its core is human interaction. Asking to get lunch, coffee, and attend meetings with my superiors throughout my internship provided me to personalize these relationships of influence and networks. I credit these actions for my employment with AEG. I am currently in the training ground program to enter Global Partnerships with an array of people willing to help me for future job endeavors inside of AEG or elsewhere. This was an invaluable aspect of the internship experience.

Seize an opportunity, make goals a reality. Although I was originally unsuccessful in my attempt to secure an internship at AEG, I seized internship experience in public relations, media, and real estate which developed unique skill sets and business experience extending my classroom education. My goal throughout coming to college was to have this opportunity with AEG, which made me never give up. Despite setbacks, I seized opportunities that enabled my goal to become realized. I am unbelievably excited to start my career with AEG and appreciate the opportunities presented by Chapman University to get me there.