Intern collageUAB Collat Business students are flooding the local business scene and putting their knowledge to work year round to gain a decided edge and boost employment prospects.

Droves of students from across the region seek summer internships in Birmingham. Collat students have an advantage over students from other universities because they're in Birmingham all year building connections through career events and professional meetings.  When they do score these highly sought after internships, they do not have the hassle of relocating or subleasing their place of residence. Plus, Collat students can continue their internships year round without interrupting their degree track.

Collat Business student, Mason Jones, was rehired for his second year as an intern at General Electric (GE). He has been interning with GE since the summer of 2013, while simultaneously completing his double major in Collat’s Industrial Distribution and Finance programs. “GE is a great company,” says Mason. “The job description of its internship program runs parallel to my curriculum at UAB, allowing me to apply my education on an everyday bases.”

Forbes reports that more than half (51%) of 65,679 undergrads surveyed in the US said that what they would like most from an internship is an opportunity for full-time employment.

It looks like internships are paying off. According to the National Associations of Colleges and Employers’ 2014 Internship & Co-op Survey, 40% of the Class of 2013 graduates with internships was hired full-time by the organizations at which they interned.

“The access we have to local, high quality internships is incredible,” says Rachel Bradley, a Collat Marketing student and intern at Protective Life“The fact, that Protective Life’s home office is in Birmingham, makes me feel like I am at the heart of the company in my own city!” 

Collat’s young people and parents place a high priority on internships and continue to reap the benefits of Collat’s location, but they're not the only ones realizing the importance of internships. reports a 14% increase in the Class of 2013 with two or more internships, and a soaring 80% percent of students surveyed are considering a summer internship compared to 49% in the fall/winter and 51% in the spring. Employers report steady, year-round internship offerings for summer (84%) fall/winter (80%), and spring (78%).

Hear from some of our Collat students interning this summer in the Magic City:

Rachel Bradley, Marketing Minor

Protective Life, Consumer Marketing and Social Engagement Intern

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“With Protective's home office in Birmingham, I feel like I am at the heart of the company in my own city! I am gaining on the job training and experience by doing.”

“I've am also enjoying exploring Birmingham this summer. I've lived here my entire life but I've never really experienced everything Birmingham has to offer. Our city is growing rapidly and we have access to it all in our own backyard!”

Shane Day, Information Systems Major

Southern Company Services, Business Analyst Intern

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“Southern Company Services is a well-respected company that has a wide range of technology uses and needs. I am gaining practical knowledge of how technology can be used to assist a business, and a better understanding of what types of issues must be considered when using technology for business applications.”

“Summer activities that I am enjoying outside of my internship, include catching up on reading and spending time with my friends and family.”

Taylor Earley, Accounting Major

Cahaba GBA, Audit Intern

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“I loved my internal audit class. Interning with Cahaba GBA offers me an opportunity to apply what I have learned in class and gain further knowledge of audit processes to help prepare me for my future career once I graduate. “

“Along with my summer internship, I am taking AC 402 and AC 414, and enjoying playing golf and going to Braves games with friends and family.”

Marcela Florez, Marketing Major and Professional Sales Certificate

Redemptive Cycles, Marketing Specialist Intern

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"Redemptive Cycles' community non-profit programs, especially for the unemployed and homeless, really attracted me to this awesome marketing opportunity. This internship is part of my lifestyle. I bike as much as I work. It's not just an internship for me it’s part of my summer things to do list.”

"Outside of the bike shop, I am taking four classes this summer: MK 445 and 330, IS103 and AC 201, and working on my side jobs for the American Marketing Association as Hospitality Chair for the Birmingham chapter and Sponsorship Chair for the UAB chapter." 

Mason Jones, Industrial Distribution and Finance Double Major

General Electric (GE), Southeast Sales Intern

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"GE is a great company and the description of its internship program runs parallel to my curriculum at UAB, allowing me to apply my education on an everyday basis. The internship is an excellent opportunity to get customer-facing sales experience, while working alongside a professional sales staff. I am able to gain a deeper understanding of the relationship among manufacturers, distributors, and other supply chain members, and further my professional development by building a network of sales mentors and contacts."“In addition to my internship, I am taking classes in anatomy and international marketing, and spending time playing soccer, hiking and fishing this summer “ 

Chelsea Root, Information Systems Major

Birmingham Police Department, Intern


"After getting to know several Birmingham officers through their Citizens Police Academy program, I wanted to learn in depth about the work they do, while simultaneously incorporating experience for my major. Each officer, detective, etc. deals with an enormous amount of information. It's essential to have an effective system that simplifies that information into a format that is easily accessible. While any organization wants reliable information, for the men and women of the Birmingham Police Department, accurate information can make the difference in them going home to their families that night."

"I have already gained a wealth of knowledge from each officer and detective whom I have had the opportunity to work alongside. I have become more familiar with the Police Department's information system as well as the criminal justice system as a whole, and I look forward to learning more throughout the duration of my internship."

"In addition to the Internship, I am also working during the summer. I try to take advantage of the break in classes this summer to read a book other than a textbook."