By Rishi Banerjee
Nobody knows what to expect at a new job, or in my case, a new internship. Prior to interning at AINS an Information Technology and Services company in Gaithersburg, MD, my only work experience was an internship at a research laboratory. I knew that my work here at AINS would be entirely different from anything I had ever done before. However, I never would have expected to enjoy interning at AINS as much as I did.
From my very first day with AINS, I was welcomed as a member of the team, and it was clear that they would look to rely on me for important tasks. I was able to hit the ground running and immediately start working on a project that would contribute to the company’s strategic direction.
I was assigned a research project about the competitive market space for a product offered by AINS. After translating my research into spreadsheets and presentations, I was able to present to lead development members my findings and recommendations for potential market opportunities. Within one week, I saw the impact of my work on other employees and the decisions they would make for the product’s business plan.
I was then asked to conduct a research project focused on a new product space for AINS. After completing this research project, I was quickly made a member of the product team. Immediately, I was included in team communications, meetings, and some client conversations. As part of this team, I worked on data validation, system testing and created workflows, while continuously conducting research. Throughout this whole process, I felt comfortable walking into each team member’s office to either offer some new insight or ask any question without any need to set up a meeting. That accessibility was an entirely unexpected benefit of interning at AINS.
But, while the work was rewarding and challenging, it had been only one part of my intern experience. In addition to my professional growth, everyone at AINS has helped me to grow personally. My co-workers made it a priority to invite me out to lunch as a way to learn more about me and make me feel more comfortable. I enjoyed talking with them and listening to them talk about their experiences ranging from their lives at AINS, to their families at home and watching Game of Thrones.
Over the past nine weeks, I have had a better experience at AINS than I could have ever imagined. I am returning back to college with a summer filled with experiences that I will always treasure. I plan to return again during my winter break, which I’m looking forward to as I’m sure I’ll have all new opportunities to learn and be useful to the company.
There are many reasons to consider interning at AINS, but perhaps none is more worthwhile than having the unique opportunity to be challenged to go outside of your comfort zone and hone professional skills to impact meaningful projects. I could tell my work was valued each step of the way by the frequent feedback and encouraging comments of my team members. Interning at AINS made me truly appreciate and enjoy contributing the team – and it can do that for you too.