October 23, 2023 – Stony Brook University’s Career Center hosted its annual National Diversity Internship Panel last month in the Student Activities Center (SAC). The purpose of the panel was to connect underrepresented and underserved students with third party organizations that have connections to paid internships at corporations across the country.
Representatives from five different organizations attended, including Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT), Forté Foundation, Emma Bowen Foundation, T. Howard Foundation, and INROADS.
Leaders from student groups kicked off the panel alongside Kimberly Dixon, the Career Center’s director of Employer Relations and Diversity Recruitment. Attendees briefly heard about each student group present: the Caribbean Student Organization (CSO), Black Womyn’s Association (BWA), Black Student Union (BSU), Colorstack, Latin American Student Organization (LASO), Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE), and National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE).
After introductions, the discussion began with MLT Recruitment and Admissions Manager Bedilia Ramirez, Forté Director of Development Krystal Brooks, Emma Bowen Foundation’s Dean of Student Affairs and Talent Acquisition Manager Claribel Nunez, T. Howard Associate Manager Dezanae Boston-Bernier, and INROADS Senior Manager Jose E. Santiago.
“I believe the panel was excellent,” Dixon said of the discussion. “[The panelists] did a very good job of not only highlighting the internships they have available, but also full-time opportunities for the seniors in the room. They are known for internships, but most of them also connect students to full-time opportunities through their clients.”
Once the main discussion finished, the room was broken up into small groups, allowing students the chance to ask questions and network directly with panelists. The five panelists shared their positive experiences interacting with attending students, as well as their commitment to getting more Stony Brook students involved in the opportunities they offer.
“I love the part where I literally get to just sit and talk with students in a group setting,” Boston-Bernier shared. “My goal is to have as many Stony Brook students apply for our program as humanly possible.”
Jaiden Francis, a sophomore Mechanical Engineering major and the NSBE programs chair, expressed his appreciation for the employers who ventured out to campus for the panel. “Just having these employers come and show us a pathway that’s available, that’s definitely a big takeaway, because all these companies that came, they are definitely here to help us.”
NSBE President Joshua Szala added, “Being that we’re getting personal information from a lot of these recruiters at such a high level in their companies, really shows that they truly mean it when they say that they want to work with us, and they want to help us out.”