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Internship to help Drake students get global business experience

News Photo
Rachael Brenner and Jacob Heller

MEDIA CONTACT: Tory Olson, 515-271-1834, tory.olson@drake.edu

In an effort to mirror global business today, Drake
University students will face after graduation, the College of Business and
Public Administration recently developed the International Business Internship

“Students need to be prepared to enter the work force
equipped with experiences to complement their academic preparation,” said
Annette Watson, career development manager.

The program, which launched in spring 2009, involves host
internship sites at Kemin Industries and Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc.

Drake students Jacob Heller, a senior finance and
accounting major from the Twin Cities, and Rachael Brenner, a junior accounting
major from Prairie Village, Kan., are the first students to participate in the
program. Heller will work with Kemin and Brenner with Pioneer.

“I am very eager to work with a company that focuses
on more than just the United States,” said Heller, who studied abroad in
Amsterdam and is trained in Dutch and Spanish. “I think this will be an
incredible opportunity to learn how the domestic and foreign operations of an international
company fit together.”

“I see this internship as a great opportunity to
explore my profession,” said Brenner, who speaks French and Spanish.
“I am also confident that Pioneer Hi-Bred will be an important step in
helping to make me a future business leader.”

Both students will complete a local internship with the
companies this summer and will continue to work part-time throughout the
following academic year. The students then will be eligible to work the
following summer at one of the companies’ overseas locations.

The overseas locations will be decided on a case-by-case
basis with each students major and each company’s business needs in mind.

“Drake tailored and promoted the program to create
good matches,” Watson said. “We are very excited to have these two
companies partner with us in making the program a reality.”

Students in their sophomore year are eligible to apply for
the internship program. Pioneer and Kemin will hire interns based on criteria
including GPA, major and transcripts.

“I think that my accounting and finance classes have
given me the necessary technical and critical thinking skills to perform on the
job,” Heller said. “More importantly though, the very high number of
international students in Drake’s College of Business and Public Administration
helps me learn a lot about other cultures.”

“Drake’s business curriculum is designed for
practical hands-on learning,” Brenner said. “I believe these
business courses have prepared me to better understand Pioneer’s business environment.
From Drake’s courses and this internship, I expect to have a clearer
understanding of the global business setting.”

The travel arrangements for students going overseas will
be made possible thanks to a donation from Dwight “Joe” Dollison,
BN’68, and his wife, Diane. Dollison has been an active member of the college’s
National Advisory Council.

“Today’s corporations operate in a global
environment,” Dollison said. “To remain competitive, it is
important for them to hire employees with a strong understanding of what it
means to work with people of different cultures, business objectives and

“With our support of this program, Diane and I hope
that we can assist efforts to better prepare Drake students to operate in this
competitive environment and bring a strengthened international skill set that
benefits both the student and the future employer.”

For more information about the internship program, contact
Annette Watson at 515-271-4715 or annette.watson@drake.edu.