By Jessica Cyr
Four students in the College of Business have the opportunity to intern with Ohio University Printing and Graphics Services, allowing them to gain professional marketing experience while earning credit and improving the department's sales.
Brian Hirsch, Joslyn Abner, Chris Knapik and Natalie Zabor will spend three quarters interning with the department and will have the chance to brainstorm marketing ideas for Printing and Graphics Services. The interns work side-by-side with printing employees and learn about what services are offered. They are then given the chance to formulate methods of increasing sales, approaching new clients and boosting customer satisfaction.
Students can earn up to four credits hours with the experience, as well as fulfill the internship requirement for the Sales Certificate, which is the equivalent of a minor.
"I have benefited a lot from my internship," said Hirsch, a senior. "Everyone at Printing and Graphics Services has been very generous with their time and knowledge concerning information I need to learn to do my job correctly. As a result of the past several weeks, I feel like my skills as a sales person have improved, thanks to the training and exposure we have been involved in so far."
Karen Deardorff, director of communications for Facilities and Auxiliaries, coordinates the work schedules and training for the interns, and says the program is advantageous to everyone involved.
"It's a great opportunity for both the interns and Ohio University," she said. "The interns have the chance to gain hands-on marketing and selling experience while earning college credit, and Printing and Graphic Services has an opportunity to serve their customers better with face-to-face, personal service."
Because this is the first year for the internship, the students' input is key to the success of future programs. Despite occasional difficulties, the interns are not only happy with setting the tone for what will be a continuing program, but also applying what they have learned to future careers.
"It has been difficult planning our sales calls and techniques since we are the first group of students doing this internship, but I have learned a lot in the process," said Zabor, a senior. "I am hoping that the sales skills I will continue to develop during this internship will help in my future career in sales and put me ahead of other applicants for the same jobs."
Jessica Cyr is a student writer with University Communications and Marketing.