After a tumultuous 2020, we at M. Holland were thrilled to bring in a 2021 cohort of summer interns. We strive to give our interns experiences they can carry throughout their future careers, and this year was no exception. Our interns worked across M. Holland’s departments, from supply chain, marketing, sales and engineering, and came from a wide array of universities, including the University of Alabama, Washington University in St. Louis and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. This year’s program was hybrid, allowing interns to work remote and in person at our headquarters in Northbrook, Illinois, or our Technical Innovation Center in Easton, Pennsylvania. Despite the challenge of working during a global pandemic, our 2021 class of interns excelled and gained valuable new skills.
Greg Watkins, senior talent acquisition manager for M. Holland, explained that internships aren’t just about a way to gain additional help. “Our program is curated to help these budding professionals gain the skills needed to be successful after graduation. It is also a way for us to invite them to join us at M. Holland,” Watkins said.
We aim to provide a robust program and give our interns many opportunities to try new things and grow. Every year, we ask the interns if the program met or exceeded their expectations and whether their time with us was fulfilling, memorable and educational. Melanie Ji, one of our accounting interns, said, “The internship gave me a diversity of experiences…through this internship, I was able to gain these experiences as well as co-workers who never fail to make me laugh or smile.”
The interns worked on several exciting projects this summer across all our functions: human resources, finance, engineering and R&D, operations, and marketing and sales. Some of their projects included assembling a massive 3D printer, creating financial reports and gathering marketing data. Interns brought their insights, wisdom and hard work, and in return, M. Holland helped provide some of the tools and skills they’ll need to succeed in their future careers. “I really enjoyed being able to create something that can be used in the business after I leave,” shared Emmett Wilson, our purchase planning intern.
Besides learning about the plastics industry, our interns learned several important lessons, both professionally and personally, including understanding the value of a collaborative work environment and the importance of asking questions. “I felt as if everyone was focused on watching one another succeed, and they welcomed questions,” said Tedi Nati, a finance intern for our treasury team. “Having been in that kind of environment which fosters teamwork, going forward, I’ll be making sure that I bring that same mindset wherever I go.”
Another benefit of working with a large, collaborative team is gaining mentorship from experienced pros in their fields. “I was able to hear so many opinions from various fields, which helped broaden my own perspective about business and my future goals,” explained Rachel Tang, a planning and development intern.
Sean Good, a technical services lab intern, described his time at M. Holland and told us about what he expected before the internship started. “The only expectation that I came in with was that I wanted to learn about plastics,” Good said. “Without a shred of doubt, I did. I learned way more than I ever thought possible.”
Our internship program is part of our larger commitment to developing future plastics professionals. The plastics industry rests in the hands of the future, and we at M. Holland want to do all we can to help cultivate growth and development.
We want to thank each of our 2021 interns for bringing their insights, wisdom and hard work. We feel honored to have played a role in their future success by providing the tools and skills to help set their professional paths.