Executive intern program expands into second year

From left to right: Junior Darien Flowers, President Leo Lambert and seniors Nicole Morillo and Evan Glover worked together as part of Elon University’s first Executive Intern Program. The program gives students the opportunity to work closely with mentors from Elon’s senior staff. Photo courtesy of University Relations.

Students can find internship opportunities within the campus walls through Elon University’s Executive Intern Program.

The program allows selected students to work with mentors from Elon’s senior staff, develop leadership skills, learn more about higher education administration and work on projects developed by senior staff.

For the second year, the program accepted applications and will conduct interviews throughout April.

Intern Requirements:
Must be in good academic standing
Demonstrate confidentiality
Full-time student will be given preference
No specific major/minor required

This year’s three interns served in the pilot of the program, which was first suggested by junior Darien Flowers. He came to President Leo Lambert with the idea, and the pilot program was created.

Flowers first heard about a similar program at Bucknell University. He said he felt this program was a good fit for Elon because of the university’s strong commitment to experiential learning.

“We didn’t have a lot of opportunities for students to get experience with senior level management,” he said. “This allowed the senior staff to engage with students for a short period of time because they don’t really have a lot of daily interaction with students.”

Flowers worked in the president’s office, senior Evan Glover worked in University Advancement and senior Nicole Morillo worked on diversity with Brooke Barnett. Each student said the internship helped to solidify what he or she hopes to do in the future.

“I have an underlying passion for education,” Glover said. “This experience showed me that at the latter end of my career, I want to be involved in higher education.”

Jeff Stein, special assistant to the president, helped manage the program from the president’s office with Chief of Staff Lisa Keegan.

Stein said he has gotten positive feedback from the students who participated, and the senior staff and looks forward to the expansion of the program.

“We hope it will continue and more students will have this opportunity,” Stein said. “Senior staff was very impressed with these students and both the senior staff and the students have really embraced this experience.”

According to Stein, the program is similar to an apprenticeship experience. Interns work closely with a specific senior staff member from a preferred area of campus, but also meet the entire senior staff.

The relationship he made with the senior staff was the aspect Glover said he liked the most about the program.

“One important part of the internship is you are not just assigned to a mentorship and never meet the person,” he said. “ You have a very deep relationship with your mentor and the other senior staff.”

Flowers said one misconception about the program is that it is only for students interested in higher education. But he said the program can be beneficial to any major.

“I encourage everyone to apply,” Flowers said. “I think for all the senior staff does, something that they do is applicable to every major on campus. The senior staff is also very accommodating, and they will select something that will be beneficial to you.”

Stein said he has received more than 20 applications for the second year.

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