Internship Experience: Mingshun Lu, Market Research Intern at Cocoon Construct

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: Mingshun Lu
Graduation Year: May 2020
Major: M.S. in Marketing
Hometown: Taipei, Taiwan
Intern Company/Title: Cocoon Construct – Market Research Intern

Describe your position and some of your daily tasks?
Some of my daily tasks included: making notes during daily meetings with the management team; building contact databases for marketing outreach; refining the company’s market research survey; conducting research, analyzing the data, as well as visualizing and categorizing the findings.

How did you land your internship?
I received an email from Whitman’s Career Center graduate advisor, Christine Waby, informing me of this internship opportunity and I applied for it. A few days later I received an email from the CEO saying she wanted to schedule a FaceTime interview, and I had two more interviews scheduled after that. At the end of June, I got the offer!

What did you learn from your internship experience?
It was a special experience for me to see how a startup company functions at its early stage. I had the opportunity to improve my professional communication and research skills throughout the internship.

Has your experience changed your plans or career choice when you leave college?
The experience didn’t change my career plans after I graduate from Whitman, though it did help me realize the importance of the things you are taught here. It is also important to enhance your software skills and build your connections while you have time and resources.

How will your internship experience help you after graduation?
I have put a lot of work into my resume and interview skills when looking for internships. So I imagine this experience will be helpful for me as I search for a full-time job here in the United States. I’m gaining more experience and becoming familiar with the job-hunting process.

Regarding how the internship experience can help me after graduation, I think it has prepared me for the real world. And also, I got to know what the work environment is like in the states.

How has the Whitman School prepared you for your internship?
My data analysis and decision-making course helped me work more efficiently when using Excel to build databases and analyze the data. I also got to utilize what I have learned from my marketing research course to help the company refine its market research survey.

Apart from the courses I have taken in my M.S. in marketing program, I have improved my professional communication skills during my first academic year. All of those networking events and career fairs provided me the opportunities to talk to many professionals and learn their way of thinking. All of these things prepared me for my summer internship.

What did you enjoy most about your experience?
It was nice to see the work I did was approved by the management team and used in the project, that all my hard work had turned into something real.

Do you have any advice to students who are looking for an internship?
I would say try to start looking for an internship as soon as possible. Be proactive, stay optimistic and keep looking. No matter how many times you fail, you will always learn something. And also, try to utilize the resources you can get from school. The Career Center can help you with your resume and interview skills. Handshake has a lot of jobs posted and all kinds of events you can join to build your network.

Kimmy Kimball