NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Internships inspire NECC students

Students majoring in communications, business and accounting were able to take advantage of the internship opportunities through NECC this semester, gaining real-world experience in their major.

Darian Denis, Brett Davekos and Fausto Caba are just a few of the students who did internships this semester and were glad they did.

Denis, a Business Transfer major, recently completed an internship at Strategic Talent, a recruiting firm and an affiliate company of MFA Financial in Tewksbury.

“This internship is great for students who know what they want and just want to get their foot in the door, but it’s also great for people who have absolutely no idea what they want because it can give them some sort of direction,” she said.

Her main responsibilities were to help the team with research; she would prescreen resumes and make initial calls to candidates to find out what they were seeking.

One of the biggest challenges for her was maintaining a balance between school, her internship, her other job and personal time for herself.

Although it’s recommended that you take fewer classes while you’re doing the internship, she didn’t necessarily listen.

“It’s a lot of work! But it’s all such a positive experience,” Denis said.

One of her favorite parts of the internship class was being able to connect with other people in the same position as she was and expand her network with other students in various fields.

“I am also someone who has no idea what I’m doing after college, so the internship was a great opportunity for me to try out a field to see if I like it, and kind of give me some direction for a future career path,” she said. “Once I got in there and I started doing it, I realized that this is something I could do for years to come.”

Brett Davekos is majoring in business management, but his interest is in the healthcare industry, so he did an internship at Anna Jaques Hospital in Newburyport.

His goal was to figure out what field in healthcare he wanted to pursue, such as nursing, radiology or medical assisting.

Since his internship was more education–oriented, he was placed in various places in the hospital, the two main locations being the Comprehensive Pain Clinic and the Operating Room.

“The duties I had in the pain clinic related to my degree the most because I did a lot of secretarial work such as filing, billing, scheduling and mail runs. However, it wasn’t all office work; my supervisor would have me sit in and see patients with her and the head physician of the clinic would invite me to sit in on some of his procedures,” said Davekos.

In the Operating Room, his main duties were to stock supplies, clean rooms after operations and assist nurses.

During down time, doctors invited him to observe various operations.

His favorite part of the internship was the people that he got to work with, who were knowledgeable and supportive of his education.

“They taught me so many things that I wouldn’t have been able to learn from a classroom; about how to interact with different kinds of patients, such as the elderly, drug addicts or ones going through chemotherapy,” he said.

Every staff member at the hospital expressed to Davekos that they wished they could have done what he was able to do, since many people entering the healthcare industry have limited knowledge of what they are getting themselves into.

When a student’s knowledge is limited to textbooks, it’s difficult for a professor to accurately inform the student of what an actual job in the field would be like.

“This program not only gave me on-site experience, connections and relationships with influential people, but it also helped me pick out that nursing, out of numerous certificates and degrees I could pick from, was the best fit for my work ethic and personality,” he said.

Fausto Caba, an accounting major in his last semester at NECC, did an internship at Bradford & Bigelow in Newburyport, a book manufacturing company. It was his first time working in an office environment.

His two main responsibilities were handling accounts payables and accounts receivables, or paying bills and billing customers.

Each day he would find a stack of papers for him, find invoices, and start working on them at the computer.

Caba’s boss turned out to be an accounting professor, and his boss exposed him to a lot of different parts of accounting.

“There’s no doubt I would recommend this internship to other students. This experience is life–changing,” he said.