As a student of Business Administration at Roanoke College - Salem, Virginia, I was exposed to a multitude of theories in topics ranging from corporate finance to production and operations management. Though these lessons were thorough, I am a firm believer that a person's education does not end in the classroom; therefore, I took it upon myself to find an internship that would allow me to see these theories in practice.
In 2005, I began my search for a commendable internship opportunity. Due to my upbringing near the New River Valley (NRV) Truck plant in Dublin, Virginia, the Volvo Group was in the forefront of my mind as I looked for an opening. I believed that Volvo could provide everything that I desired to achieve through an internship, part of which included working for a competitive global company.
In 2006, I began my internship with Volvo Logistics North America (VLNA). Upon my arrival at the Radford Logistics Center, I was greeted by upbeat employees with warm personalities. The bleak image of the corporate realm I had imagined as a student was contradicted by the company's bright culture. Not only did VLNA provide a pleasant workplace but it gave me a broad view of the supply-chain. This outlook granted me the opportunity to see the application of many topics that I had been subjected to while at school.
While at VLNA, I performed an array of tasks within the Emballage (Packaging) department. I collected and configured data for analysis by the Director of Packaging while also aiding other employees with projects including, but not limited to: a Just-In-Time (JIT) Exhaust project for Volvo Trucks - NRV, repackaging of parts at the Northern Logistics Center (NLC) for Volvo Powertrain - Hagerstown, and the implementation of Emballage for Mack Trucks - NRV. I took part in genuine projects that had discernible results, which differed from the dull tasks that many interns within other companies frequently suffer through. Direction and assistance from others enabled me to fully appreciate the depth of each project, making my time at VLNA an enjoyable learning experience.
Though not in a classroom, I asked countless questions in an attempt to comprehend the workplace, business decisions, customer/supplier interactions and the company's structure. The employees that surrounded me were willing and able to answer nearly every question presented to them. The open communication within VLNA was vital to my education in the "real world." In time I was able to find supporting, and contradicting, evidence for many of the principles illustrated by my Roanoke College professors. Becoming familiar with actual business practices, supported by theoretical fundamentals, would allow me to obtain a better grasp on situations.
An internship with Volvo permitted me to grow intellectually while showing me a glimpse of the corporate scene; more particularly, a look into the Volvo Group. Volvo provides a never-ending supply of opportunities for those who persevere. It is readily apparent that the company promotes the growth of its employees, both personally and professionally. I was extremely pleased with my internship and returned to work at the Radford Logistics Center upon my graduation from Roanoke College in 2007.