Name: Enah Kouadio
Major and College: BBA in International Business at Loyola University Maryland
Internship Title: Procurement Compliance / Supplier Diversity Intern
Internship Site: KBR, Inc
1) Please tell us about your Career Goals.
My career goals include blending my academic background with the hands-on experience from working in compliance and supplier diversity to help promote small business (SB) utilization. I hope to grasp the nuances of compliance regulations to ensure that the company is meeting those standards, as well as help small businesses integrate into the company. As I have a background in information systems, providing me a solid foundation in data analysis, I hope to enhance skills like Excel and specialized software to track and report on compliance and supplier diversity metrics. Finally, I hope to collaborate with diverse departments to not only facilitate the integration of compliance and supplier diversity principles across these functions but to also understand how to work with people from different backgrounds and goals.
2) Tell us about your internship (i.e. day-to-day responsibilities, special projects/clients and work culture).
In my day-to-day role, I attend a variety of small business training sessions and outreach opportunities, while ensuring that our spreadsheet remain up to date. I run and analyze small business reports as well as talk to small businesses to give them a chance to compete with large businesses, increasing small business utilization in the company. One special project that I enjoyed was for our data harmonization effort where I compared data from our current reporting system to a new software the department is hoping to move to. I also got to do an internal audit of the business unit I assisted during the summer. This opportunity gave me valuable lessons on compliance practices as I found ways to fix the issues found. I found the work culture to be a safety net of support where I could always reach out for help whenever I needed it. This environment has genuinely empowered me to witness my own growth and increase my confidence as I progressed through the internship.
3) Describe the process of obtaining your position. When did you hear of the position and submit your application?
I heard of the position through my professor at the university. An employee of the company, who is also an alumnus of the university I attended, reached out to my Operations Management professor who let me know of the opportunity. After researching the company, I was attracted by its sustainability efforts and work practices. I submitted my application soon afterwards and began the interview process.
4) Which of the following resources did you use to find your current experience?
5) What have you enjoyed the most about your position or organization?
One of the aspects I’ve truly enjoyed in my role is the engaging process of data analysis and talking to SB’s. It’s been particularly satisfying to identify and rectify errors within the system (ultimately contributing to its improvement) and onboarding small businesses to the company. However, what has genuinely stood out to me about the organization is the great team spirit and support from my manager and colleagues. Their guidance and assistance in navigating this unfamiliar place have been invaluable. Their encouragement to continuously improve not only for the benefit of the company but also for my personal skill development has been a driving force behind my growth during my time here.
6) How do you believe you have made an impact through your work?
My approach while working has been rooted in diligence, ensuring that I not only adhere to the given instructions but also work to surpass expectations. I first and foremost wanted to be helpful to the team. Therefore. I made sure to be available and work on tasks with no hesitation. I believe I have helped small businesses the most and helped the company increase small business utilization. During this internship, I completed tasks that I never thought I would be able to do or things that I was not sure I could do. However, the fact that I was open to doing them helped my teammates have more time to focus on what they do best.
7) What advice would you give to another student who is seeking an internship or similar experience (i.e. Internship search, Resume or Interview tips)?
My advice would be to stay open-minded and proactive. Don’t limit yourself to the most obvious choices like the well-known companies because sometimes the best opportunities come from unexpected places like smaller companies or those that you haven’t heard of before. During interviews, make sure to show your personality and willingness to learn and don’t hesitate to ask questions. The fact that I asked questions during my interview showed that I was interested in the position and would be willing to absorb the information I was taught during the internship like a sponge.