Beyond the classroom: How students are spending their summer

Photo Courtesy: Benefits of Internships

As we enter the third week of the coveted college summer break, Florida A&M University’s students are gearing up to embark on enriching experiences for their professional and academic careers with internships, conferences and study abroad trips.

Nissa Phillip, a rising sophomore public relations major, will attend DevCon this summer in Atlanta, Georgia, hosted by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. According to TMCF, the conference will be held over the course of three and a half days and will aim to enhance the professional aspirations of freshmen and sophomore students who have the potential to transform the corporate, governmental, and technical fields while enhancing company performance.

“Personal branding is especially important in communications fields, and I hope that will be a major focus of this conference,” Phillip said. 

Senior computer engineering student Jeremiah Gauthier will take his talents to Verizon this summer as a network engineer intern. While there, he will design, implement, maintain network infrastructure, troubleshoot issues and optimize performance. Gauthier found out about the role while attending the Black Engineer of the Years Awards as a student speaker. 

“Advancing my career means not only achieving personal success but also creating opportunities for others and contributing to a more diverse and inclusive engineering community,” Gauthier said.  

Taylor Bennet, a second-year psychology major and criminal justice minor, is spending her summer abroad in Rome, Italy, studying with John Cabot University. 

Bennet plans to take courses in public speaking and painting while also spending time exploring historical sites and other cities in the country. The opportunity arose for Taylor through the FAMU Education Abroad website, where the university offers a discount for their students. 

“I am really excited to get involved in the culture in Italy,” Bennet said.  “I’ve been able to learn a little bit of the Italian language and that has been really exciting.” 

Senior physical health fitness student Gabe Jean-Simon plans to set sail with Carnival cruise line as an activity host intern. 

In this role, Jean-Simon will ensure guests are having a blast as he hosts parties and events for the summer. The cruise line will allow him to travel to several tropical destinations like Jamaica, the Bahamas, and Grand Turks. 

“This experience will give me the best opportunity to get my foot in the door in the entertainment industry and further my career as an entertainer,” Jean-Simon said.  

Earl Hankerson IV, a third-year food science major with a minor in nutrition, will participate in two programs this summer break, first as a camp counselor for the Florida State University’s Care Program working with 9-12th graders as they explore the university and the Tallahassee area. 

Secondly, Hankerson will partake in FAMU’s Undergraduate Rattler Research Program, where he will be able to research a diverse line-up of topics over the summer. 

“It all starts about presence, and what you bring to the table even down to the little things,” Hankerson said.