Student Intern Helps Empower Women to Start their Businesses

    June 24, 2019
    By: Julia Betti
    This internship has taught Betti "the power of human connection and that you can help others achieve their dreams by being their advocate."

    Julia Betti ’21 works for The University of Scranton’s Small Business Development Center, helping to plan and assist the StartUp program for the Women’s Entrepreneurship Center this summer. She's a few weeks into her internship -- hear what she has to say about her experience, below.

    Describe a typical day on the job.

    I am an intern at The University of Scranton's Small Business Development Center, specifically with the Women's Entrepreneurship Center (WEC). WEC offers women who are looking to start a small business assistance in whatever areas they need such as business planning, financial planning, marketing, etc.

    In the summer, WEC offers a four-week StartUP class where each week covers a different topic related to starting a small business. I help plan and assist in the running of the StartUP program. I also work with/consult five women from the StartUp class and conduct research on whatever areas of assistance they need depending on where they're at in starting their small business. I am also in charge of getting the WEC Instagram and Facebook pages up and running. I create and publish content for the pages with assistance from an SBDC consultant. 

    What do you enjoy most about your internship?

    The thing I enjoy most about my internship is the smiles on the women's faces I help consult when they reach a new milestone when starting their small business. These women work so hard to better themselves and pursue their passions. When I can provide help in whatever areas they need in their startup to better their lives and live out their dreams, it is extremely gratifying.  

    What are some of the skills you have learned?

    In my internship so far, I have learned the ins and outs of what goes into creating a social media post and boosting a business' social media presence. I have learned how to create and post content that gains traction and following by testing what content people want to see and adjusting future content based on that. I have also learned how to consult and help people out with starting their own small business. Consulting has taught me how to really connect with people and ask clear, concise questions to get the answers I need to produce results.

    What were your expectations for the internship? Does it match reality?

    Going into the internship, I was expecting to work and consult a few women within the StartUP program and help to build WEC's social media presence by starting their pages. The StartUP program was everything I imagined, but I didn't realize how much social media relies on analytics. Through trial and error, I am learning how important it is to look at what posts gained the most traction, how to engage with current followers and gain new followers, how to create memorable content that resonates with people, among others on social media by looking at analytics to boost a company or businesses' online presence.

    How do you feel this internship is preparing you for the real world? 

    So far, this internship has equipped me with the necessary skills to communicate with people effectively and ask the right questions in order to get the answers and results people are asking for. Through working with the different women, it has also taught me the power of human connection and that you can help others achieve their dreams by being their advocate. When one person wins, we all win. This internship has also taught me different aspects of social media that I can take with me in future internships or jobs since social media is a vital component of any business, especially within the marketing industry.

    What advice would you give to college students pursuing an internship during the summer?

    My advice to college students seeking a summer internship is to seek out any opportunities presented to you. Any experience is good experience because the skills one learns can be applied in various aspects of one's future job and life.

    I would also say to connect/network with alumni and other people within one's prospective industry on LinkedIn to start a relationship and pick their brain on how they got their start and ask them about potential internship opportunities. A simple hello or question can open up many doors that one may never have imagined and create ample opportunities. 

    Julia Betti '21 is a marketing major and history minor.
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