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A Day in the Life as a Quicken Loans Intern… Kind Of.

As an intern at Quicken Loans, I was lucky enough to be placed on the best team in the company – Ready For Lift Off. Overall, this team manages the internship program at QL, which was composed of more than 1,000 interns this summer. This includes everything from talking to every single one of the 15,000 candidates that applied for the internship program, planning countless events to show the interns around Detroit, organizing travel and housing for those interns coming from out-of-state, and much, much more. I came onto this team as a social media intern under my mentor Kristina Green but learned so much more than how to use social media as a recruiting tool instead of a marketing tool. I started this post as a way to describe an average “day in the life” on the Ready For Lift Off team, but honestly every day is a different experience. With that being said, I am deciding to use this post as a way to highlight some of the epic things I did this summer.

As a QL Intern I:

  • Attended Jump Start | Everyone’s first day at QL and their Family of Companies in Detroit is pretty similar. You have a day filled with training on QL and their culture, get your badges, set up your computers, voicemails and emails, tour the QL campus eat great food, drink plenty of Red Bull and meet your new team for the next 3 months.
  • Spent the Day Learning About Our ISMs | Simply put – the ISMs are what we are, what makes QL click, the ideals we team members live by. Every team member takes a paid day off work to hang out at one of the awesome casinos/event centers downtown, eat even better food, drink even more Red Bull, and listen to our founder Dan Gilbert and CEO Bill Emerson speak all day. It may sound somewhat boring, but trust me it is not. Listening to Bill and Dan speak so passionately about these ISMs really sparks inspiration amongst the team members. At the end of this day, all you want to do is “do the right thing” by “raising your level of awareness” and finding “the inches we need that are everywhere around us.” Check ‘em out here.
  • Participated in After 5 Events | Alongside all the awesome events that I will touch on in a few moments, After 5 is an organization in Detroit that strives to bring young professionals together through events and networking opportunities. Through After 5, I was able to meet Michigan Governor Rick Snyder (check out this selfie!), meet other interns, and learn more about living, working and playing in Detroit.
  • Enjoyed Company Perks | Even as interns, we are lucky enough to take advantage of the fantastic perks QL and its FOC offers team members. You’ll have to “believe it to see it” (catch that ISMs drop? ;)), to understand how many discounts and benefits we receive in downtown Detroit and at many online retailers.
  • Attended Intern Events | Throughout the summer, the intern team puts on about 5/6 big events for the interns as a way to get us out exploring in Detroit and mingling with each other. Some of these include a Tigers game, tour of Ford Field, Show & Tell (bring your parents to work day), Tweet Up, RiverDays and bus tours around the city. The best part about these events is there is always free (good) food included, swag is usually received and you get to leave work and still get paid! They are definitely something to look forward to!
  • Took Advantage of the Housing Option | Quicken Loans is awesome and they came through yet again. I was coming from out-of-state and for any intern in my boat, they offer 50% housing at a local university, in my case Wayne State University. I had the option of a single room or sharing, but since I didn’t know anyone I chose a single. But this was a perfect solution to coming to a city where I knew everyone. We all got to play together after work and there a real sense of community. Plus there were shuttles that took us to work everyday!

As an Intern on the Intern Team I:

  • Was Up, Close & Personal with the Intern Events | All of those awesome events that I just mentioned were coordinated and executed by my team. So many of our days were spent packing swag bags, ordering food for the interns, choosing shirt colors and planning the most efficient way to register over 1,000 interns within 30 minutes.
  • Took Home Extra Swag | As mentioned above, interns get it all at the events – food, shirts, bags, toys, ice cream. Being on the intern team means when the fun is over, we get to clean up and anything that’s left over, we got first dibs on. I think I have a t-shirt in every color of the rainbow and popcorn to last me a lifetime!
  • Spent the Day at Cedar Point | After our team reached (and exceeded) our goal of 1,000 interns we got to pick a reward and we collectively chose Cedar Point. Our whole team got the day off to ride roller coasters, eat greasy foods together and take line selfies. It was da bomb!
  • Received Insider Information for Success | Being surrounded by recruiters all day, we hear a lot. We pick up on do’s and don’t’s of interviewing, best practices for our resumes and an overall “backstage pass” to the hiring process. This information will definitely be helpful as I start applying to full time positions throughout my senior year.
  • Made Everyone’s Friday a Little Better by Passing Out Free Ice Cream | This point goes along with all the extra stuff we sometimes accumulate after events. After our Tweet Up event we had almost 500 ice sandwiches/sundae cones/ice cream bars/popsicles left over and myself and two other interns were allowed to go to as many floors/buildings as necessary to get rid of it. We pushed the cutest ice cream cart around right before lunch and passed out ice cream to team members. It was one of the best days of my internship because who doesn’t love free ice cream?!?!
  • Slow Rolled | Detroit Bike City’s Monday night Slow Rolls were huge with my team. There were always at least a few people going every Monday. But on a few occasions, we all rolled together and it was super fun. Getting outside of the office with your team can be so great for building up team chemistry even more. I loved it.

I’m sure that I didn’t cover everything and of course we did work too. I focused on a few summer projects and campaigns on my own and with other interns. But I just wanted to try to iterate what my summer was like. I came to Quicken Loans for an internship – some experience that I could add to my resume. What I left with was so much more. Stay tuned!

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10 Weeks Late

I arrived home from my marvelous time studying abroad on May 17th, just over 10 weeks ago. On May 21st, 4 days after returning home, I wrote this post.
I have been meaning to write this post since May 22nd. So here it finally is…

Returning home from abroad, there are a lot of things running through your head. What has changed? When can I see my friends? How do I unpack all this? Can I sleep for a week straight? Am I registered for classes? When can I go back? Do I ever have to leave my bed again? …and so much more. A whirlwind of feelings takes over and you realize returning home is the same as you remember it, but totally different at the same time.

But I wasn’t home for too long to see if these feelings stuck around because less than one week later I was starting my summer internship at Quicken Loans. I proceeded to unpack my suitcase from abroad and re-pack it within the same day (which could have been a blog post of its own). I spent a few days basking in the evenings and meals spent with my family and friends before loading up the car and heading north towards Michigan.

I parked outside my new home for the summer – Leon H. Atchison Hall at Wayne State University and started unloading my car. After an hour or so of moving in, I realized a few things: 1. There was no shower curtain. 2. There was no overhead light (AKA – I needed to buy a floor lamp pronto). 3. We had air conditioning #winning. and 4. The Detroit Police Department takes parking very seriously. I was slammed with a $20 parking ticket within an hour. But I didn’t have time to stick around and debate it. It was Memorial Day weekend and I was on my way to my first adventure post-Spain – Saguatuck, Michigan, (located on the western side of the mitten on Lake Michigan) with Zak and a whole bunch of Googlers. I had no idea what to expect, but isn’t that what makes adventures the best?!

And what an adventure it was! Memorial Day weekend was filled with cabin food, charades, sunbathing, Settlers of Catan and new friendships – more than I could have ever anticipated.

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Now fast forward to Tuesday, May 27th. Ten days after I had landed in the states and I was catching the shuttle from Wayne State to downtown Detroit for my first day as a Quicken Loans intern. Boy, was I in for a ride…