Blue Cross Welcomes Its Summer Interns

Blue Cross Welcomes Its Summer Interns

When Paola Camarena first accepted her internship with Blue Cross, she was excited to work for an organization that is dedicated to Michigan’s communities. Yet, she couldn’t help but be slightly apprehensive about its large size.

After her first day at Blue Cross, Camarena realized she had nothing to be worried about.

“Coming into the internship, I wasn’t sure how I would fit into such a large organization,” said Camarena, a student from the University of Michigan working in Diversity and Inclusion. “I soon found out that despite its large size, Blue Cross is very engaging. I’m able to talk to my director every day. It has taught me that there’s always a way to fit in and be successful.”

According to Time, having a productive internship is the first key in landing a fulltime job after graduation. On top of making some extra money, interns develop essential connections and learn real-world skills. With almost three million new health care jobs being added to the economy over the next five years, the Blue Cross interns are getting their feet into the door of a rapidly advancing industry.

Students arrived in mid-May to begin their 12-week program and were handpicked for 60 different areas of the organization. A total of 170 interns from 31 schools made it through an interviewing process that included more than 2,000 applicants.

“Our program is highly strategic,” said Jody Guastella Jones, workforce diversity consultant. “Candidates are screened and selected based on unique niche skillsets that match to their department’s work. Some of the most highly sought after skills are strong analytic abilities, writing ability, advanced Excel experience and programming.”

Most of the students are from Michigan, but attend universities anywhere from California to the East Coast. Some of the interns are bilingual, which is beneficial as Blue Cross grows in individual markets and the customer base becomes more diverse.

Many of the interns participate in the Young Professionals Network (YPN), a group dedicated to engaging interns and other workers interested in growing their employee engagement. At the interns’ first YPN event, we asked five students what they enjoyed most about working at Blue Cross.

I’ve learned a lot from meeting with the lead staff. They’ve given me many new perspectives, and seeing them work efficiently has taught me how to make the best use of my time. My team has been engaging and fun. Billy Comstock, Michigan State University — Operational Performance  
My favorite part is taking part in meaningful projects. For example, my mentor is allowing me to present to new employees, and the confidence from that experience is a vital part of my professional development. Jimmy Sze, Eastern Michigan University — Enterprise Information Technology  Jimmy
I have been able to relate coursework to what I’m learning at this internship, and that’s been very insightful. I’m looking forward to taking advantage of what Blue Cross can offer me educationally. Kylyn Nason, Oakland University — Sales Force Development  Kylyn
This internship has shown me the work environment I can see myself fitting into. Most of the employees I work with share the same mindset as me and are both friendly and knowledgeable. I love the outside activities Blue Cross provides as well. Maria Gabriela Meridith, University of Michigan Dearborn — Underwriting  Maria
Paola Camarena, University of Michigan — Diversity and Inclusion (mentioned above)  Paola

Follow @BCBSM and search #BCBSMinterns to gain some insight into what Michigan’s top companies are looking for from candidates. For more information about careers at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, click here.

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