As excited as you may be to explore the campus life at UChicago, you might also be curious about what UChicago students are up to during the summer after finishing up their first year of classes. With the Career Advancement resources the College offers, such as individual career advisers and the Jeff Metcalf Internship Program, many first-year students partake in internships around the world. Other students dive into research opportunities with UChicago professors and graduate students. Below, I’ve highlighted a few of my peers who are doing some cool things this summer.
Through the Metcalf Internship Program, Kathryn, a friend from my House, is interning at a finance firm in New York City. Closely related to work in investment banking, her responsibilities include analyzing financial statements, writing business reports, and planning pitch decks for presentations. While Kathryn is still considering which type of financial career she might want to pursue, her internship has strengthened her desire to go into investment banking in the future.
“I've really enjoyed the close-knit environment of the internship, and the opportunity to meet other students and professionals in the New York City area. I've been able to gain valuable experience evaluating businesses and analyzing industries.”
Samuel, another friend from my House, is interning in Singapore with a design strategy company. Throughout the internship, he gets to learn about branding strategies, product design, and marketing research. As an Anthropology major, he gains valuable experience through his work, as it blends ethnography with cultural research and creative thinking.
“I’ve enjoyed learning from the diverse backgrounds of my coworkers, half of whom are international. My work involves bicultural interactions with people from all walks of life in the Southeast Asian region. It’s personally satisfying to hear about the intimate details of the product use in their everyday lives and to plan how we can improve their quality of life.”
Another option many first-years consider is getting involved with research throughout the summer. My friend An is researching with a professor at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, a lab operated by UChicago. Through testing samples of aluminum manganese to find its critical temperature, An and her fellow researchers are able to figure out the optimal material to use for the South Pole telescope. An’s responsibilities also include sketching up parts of tools in an engineering software so that a company can produce the parts for the researchers.
“As someone who’s never done research before, working with Professor Chang has been an incredible learning opportunity. I’m amazed by the hands-on experience that I get to be involved in, whether it’s learning how to set up samples in the cryostat, manipulating data, or participating in the South Pole Telescope team meetings.”