In today’s blog, we are featuring Fernanda Garcia, a former marketing intern who now serves as a Marketing Coordinator at Harmony Venture Labs. Fernanda was born and raised in Santiago, Chile. She moved to the United States in 2017 to pursue her Bachelor’s in Marketing and Management. In her free time, she loves to be outdoors, visit local coffee shops, read books, and listen to music.

We can all agree this year has been far from normal, and the stress of transitioning from college into the workforce has been riddled with uncertainties and challenges that the world we live in brings. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, COVID-19 has changed not only the way we see the world but the way in which we approach every aspect of our lives.

I graduated from Spring Hill College in May of this year. During the months leading up to graduation, the pressure to line up a job was growing and without an internship on my resume, I was having a hard time validating my skills to land an entry-level job. At that moment, I knew two things. First, I was passionate about marketing and eager to be given the opportunity to learn more about all that it entails, and second, I wanted to move to Birmingham, Alabama by the end of the summer. I didn’t realize that an internship could even be part of the equation that could help me achieve my goals. As time went on, one day the talent acquisition specialist at HVL reached out to me on LinkedIn and said just what I needed to hear — that the company she worked for was looking to bring on a marketing intern, and whoever they selected would be able to gain valuable experience to add to their resume. Even better, she mentioned that HVL is scaling, and there could be a possibility of a full-time opportunity following the internship. Surely enough, three weeks later, I decided to take a leap of faith and accepted the available internship and signed a year lease in Birmingham.

In my short time as an intern at HVL, I not only grew my skill set but also my confidence.  An internship benefits you in more ways than one. Yes, you build your resume and knowledge base. But you also gain the critical experience of a real-world work environment and employee culture. The team at HVL is supportive and encouraging. They put trust in me to do great work, and mentor me when I need support. And regardless of title or experience, you are a key member of the team. This inviting culture has helped me grow as a person and has opened my eyes to the fact that is possible to work for a company where every voice is heard and all feedback is welcome. If you want to learn by experience, are open to constructive dialog, and want to be exposed to every aspect of a business, then our MVP Internship Program could be right for you. 

As a marketing intern, I worked in collaboration with different functional areas of the business such as Design, Advisory, and Operations. My responsibilities varied from content creation to social media and promotion plans. To me, an internship is as much about alleviating the workload of your manager as it is about learning from every process, task, and playbook you have available. It’s a two-way street—to gain value you need to add it, too.  If I had to choose one thing I respect most about the culture at HVL, it would be everyone’s willingness to give and receive advice, and how we all pitch in to help achieve our shared goals.

Now you’re probably wondering why I began my story with the pandemic. I’ll tell you why. COVID-19 might have the world on edge and wondering when things will go back to normal. But the truth is, in all difficult situations, the best way forward is to adapt to your environment.  Businesses have had to evolve and technology has had to deliver. Learning from an organization that was created within the uncertainty of the pandemic and gaining knowledge about the SaaS Industry and its rapid evolution has been an opportunity to refine my skillset for the future. Full disclosure? If you had asked me two months ago why I choose HVL, my answer would have probably been something like, “the recruiter and interviewers seemed nice, so why not?”  Now that I’ve joined the team, I’ve seen how much value I’ve gained in such a short amount of time. I’ve had the chance to grow as a person, make connections, and have discovered my strengths and areas for growth.

Now, I could sit here and say I regret not taking on internships in college–but that wouldn’t be true. I don’t regret the choices I made, because if there’s anything I have learned, it’s that living in the present is the best way of truly living. And if you are willing to take a chance and trust your abilities, the rest will follow. I challenge you to embrace internships (and all opportunities!) with an open mind and remember that we are all learning.  Whether you’ve been in the industry for 30 years or are fresh out of college, the world is constantly changing, and so are you.  We are all students in one way or another. That’s something that’ll never change.

Ready to learn how you can grow your knowledge and skillset in the B2B SaaS industry? Check out our MVP Internship Program today.