Ferris State University students gain valuable work experience through internships. Internships also can confirm or redirect career decision-making, provide marketability, develop people skills and enhance classroom learning. Many academic programs require one, but the experience is encouraged regardless to provide students with a better understanding of what will be expected of them in the workplace.
Many students are participating in myriad internships this summer. Meet: Stephannie Michelson
She is: A junior from Saginaw, Mich., majoring in Computer Information Technology
Internship: United States Marshals Service district headquarters in Grand Rapids. The office is the nation’s oldest federal law enforcement agency and the enforcement arm of U.S. federal courts. It oversees court security for judicial proceedings, fugitive and prisoner operations, asset forfeiture, prisoner transportation and witness protection.
Stephannie’s unpaid internship ran from January through May.
What she learned: Stephannie located people with warrants for their arrest by searching computer databases, served people court orders and worked in the cellblock to keep track of federal prisoners.
“I had a new responsibility every time I went into the office. Every day I was partnered up with a different deputy and got to do what they were doing that day,” she said. “I really enjoyed the computer databases-aspect of the internship, because that is what I am majoring in.
“It made me realize how much I really do like my major and how much I am looking forward to the future I will have with it.”
She credits her academic coursework with providing the time-management skills to balance her job responsibilities.
“Without classes, homework and learning new things, opportunities once we graduate would be limited,” she said.
Core value: Courage, “without a doubt,” she said.
“It takes more courage than most people would expect to do what the Federal Marshals do on a regular basis. I was honored to get to work with such strong, courageous and committed individuals.”
On campus: Stephannie is involved with the university’s Student Affairs office and is working the remainder of the summer as an orientation leader, welcoming more than 2,000 new students to campus. She is a leader in the College of Business Torch program, which works to improve student retention and graduation rates, and is an active participant in intramural sports.
She credits her campus involvement with helping her to be more outgoing, particularly with people she doesn’t know.
Her plan: After graduation in December 2014, Stephannie hopes to find a job on the West Coast and continue her education by pursuing a master’s degree in Business Administration.