Internship Experience: Jared Lynch, Operations Intern at Target

In this “Internship Experience” blog post series, we will be featuring the profile and thoughts of our students from Syracuse University’s Martin J. Whitman School of Management as they return from summer internships.

Name: Jared Lynch
Graduation Year: 2021
Majors: Supply Chain Management / Finance
Hometown: Lumberton, NJ
Intern Company/Title: Target – Operations Intern

Describe your position and some of your daily tasks? 
My position worked directly with Target’s same-day delivery service, Shipt. My daily tasks revolved around completing three core projects that included competitive analysis, identifying improvements for inventory reporting and also organizing a business review. I worked with a lot of Target’s internal systems, as well as Tableau and Excel to analyze data, find key problems and identify innovative solutions for Shipt.

How did you land your internship?
On Linkedin, I found a Syracuse University alumna that currently works at Target and reached out to her via email asking about any potential summer opportunities. She then forwarded my resume to the supply chain recruiter and I ended up interviewing a few weeks later and getting an internship offer for the summer.

What did you learn from your internship experience?
Through my work with Target’s same-day delivery service, I have learned the importance of having a responsive supply chain to fulfill customer demand, as well as how drastically consumer shopping trends have changed because of COVID-19. My experience has also shown me the importance of having accurate and transparent inventory data that will go a long way in best serving the guest’s needs and providing a satisfactory shopping experience. Professionally, I have learned the importance of making professional connections, especially in a virtual environment. My manager emphasized the importance of making meaningful connections that will last beyond my internship that can serve as valuable references or internal resources if I were to return to Target full-time.

Has your experience changed your plans or career choice when you leave college?
It has definitely made me consider the various fields I would like to enter considering my different interests and skillset. Target is very unique with providing flexibility for employees to switch roles or fields every two or so years, and is something that I found very attractive. I also enjoyed how dynamic the retail industry is and the vast opportunities that exist within a large company. 

How will your internship experience help you after graduation?
Whether I end up at Target or not, the great connections I made throughout my internship will be an extremely valuable asset during my job search. Additionally, I gained a lot of relevant supply chain skills bt completing impactful work for the company that will be attractive to employers. 

How has the Whitman School prepared you for your internship?
The Whitman School has provided me with a great overall understanding of all aspects of a business that has allowed me to understand how my supply chain decisions impact the entire company. Both of my supply chain management classes last fall also provided me with a solid understanding of supply chain strategy and terminology that really help me onboard quickly with my team. My experience and comfort with Excel also served as a great asset when being tasked with analyzing large sets of data. 

What did you enjoy most about your experience?
I was very grateful for the unique experiences that I was able to gain through working with Shipt. I was able to become a Shipt shopper during my internship to better understand the entire process and identify ways to improve their shopping experience. I was also able to go into my local Target store and connect with a team leader. He provided me with valuable insight into inventory issues and reporting enhancements. Both of these experiences provided me with great perspectives and information into my work and truly added value to my virtual internship.

Do you have any advice to students who are looking for an internship?
Start applying early and be persistent. You may not get a response back from every application or email, but it only takes one to spark your internship or career path. Leverage alumni connections and utilize Linkedin. Be sure to make time throughout the semester to apply for open positions and send out emails. When you are interviewing, do your best to learn about the company’s culture and core values, and show that you are interested and passionate about the position and the company. 

Kimmy Kimball