Intern Spotlight: Staying Colorful in Purchasing
“I wanted to go from studying something black and white, to studying something more colorful,” Mercedes explains when we asked her about her choice to major in Supply Chain and Operations Management (SCOM). “I started as an Accounting major, but found SCOM had more options across the globe for different career paths.” A University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh student, Mercedes Minzlaff, applied to work with First Source Worldwide, LLC as a requirement to fulfill her major. Her passion for international travel is put to good use as she works daily in discovering how the business sources its products and gets them to their facilities effectively and efficiently.
Working with the head of the Purchasing department and the rest of the purchasing team, Mercedes gets an up-front view of the logistics that happen behind the scenes. “This can be a complicated industry, we really focus on the specific nuances of our products to best conform to regulations and standards,” she reflects. “I didn’t realize how in-depth business practices can get until I had to apply my studies professionally.” As she’s worked on multiple projects, she’s been able to gain experiences in many different aspects of purchasing, seeming to fit in well with her love of variety and figuring out how to best accomplish tasks.
Mercedes further described how specific classes she took during her internship directly related to what was happening in the workplace. In her second year of the internship, she saw firsthand how a company plans for and rolls out a full enterprise resource planning system successfully as FSW implemented Deacom systems into their facilities. This led to better tracking and quality control in her department and gave her a taste of what it looks like to be innovative with new systems and utilize intellectual capital resources. “Overall, I feel I’ve gained a good base of what it takes to work professionally so I can get more out of my remaining classes. Now, I can better choose where I want to go after college,” she says.
This summer, Mercedes heads back to Europe on her third study abroad excursion. She’ll spend two months in Germany working in international logistics, her prior two excursions were in France and Rome for ancient history and French studies. When she returns, she’s hoping to combine her passion for international studies and supply chain management into one career after she graduates in May 2016.
Do you envision yourself in this position? Gain similar experience and explore our internship opportunities to advance your career.