There is no doubt that résumés showing experiences at top companies attract attention during the hiring process. So how do you get that experience? By landing a quality summer internship.
For Grinnell students, summer internships at TIAA-CREF Financial Services are the gold standard. Interns get to work with high-level staff on challenging projects — for an organization whose values Grinnellians believe in.
Several Grinnell students are accepted at TIAA-CREF each year, and more than 40 Grinnellians have held summer internships there in the past 15 years.
Natalie Duncombe ’15 was a Grinnellink intern at TIAA-CREF in 2013. She says building a mentor relationship with Michael Kahn ’74 was the most valuable aspect of her internship. Kahn is senior managing director of corporate strategy and development at TIAA-CREF in New York City.
“His advice throughout the summer helped me get the most out of my time at TIAA-CREF, and he continued to help me with recommendation letters, as well as career, résumé, and interview advice,” Duncombe says. “Without him and my time at TIAA-CREF, I don't know if I would have been as successful in securing my economic research assistant position at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington, D.C.”
“TIAA-CREF is a particularly great environment for Grinnell students,” says Kahn. “We’re a mission-driven organization. We exist to serve those who serve the greater good, which aligns well with how Grinnellians think about what their role in the world will be.”
Kahn sponsors, mentors, and works closely with the majority of Grinnell interns, whether their student experiences are physically located in midtown Manhattan or at another major TIAA-CREF campus, such as Charlotte, N.C.
David Jutrsa ’15 was also a Grinnellink summer intern at TIAA-CRFE in 2013. “David worked on a potential major acquisition,” Kahn says. “It was a really big deal, and it was complicated. As an intern you’d think you would never get near something that interesting, but he got to work with the core team and was in meetings with our most senior staff.”
Jutrsa, who recently accepted a research assistant position with the International Monetary Fund, says, “The TIAA-CREF internship exposed me to the world of business, and really solidified my interest in finance. I would definitely recommend any Grinnellink internship with TIAA-CREF to students looking to break into these fields and connect what they learn in classes to the professional world.”
The Grinnellink internship program, which builds on connections with Grinnell alumni and friends, is run by the Center for Careers, Life, and Service. CLS plays an integral part in matching students with summer internship opportunities.
Natalie Duncombe ’15 and David Jutrsa ’15 both majored in economics.