Interns - The King of Bling


Paying It Forward And Watching Them Run With What You Give Them!

I have the privilege of working in a company that believes in giving back. One way that we do that is with our college intern program. This summer twelve students who are about to enter their senior year, were selected from a pool of over 250 applicants. These students have had the opportunity to experience a slice of the real world in their chosen areas of study and interest, earn some money to help with their education expenses, while gaining valuable insights that will help to set themselves apart as they begin their future career journeys. It's been my pleasure to have had the opportunity to serve as a summer mentor to four of them. 

One of things I especially enjoy is seeing an intern take what is being given to them in the form of advice and counsel, and watching them make it their own. It's rewarding on many levels to watch them take new risks, gain new experiences, and see things through a new set of lenses. I like to think that they are discovering how to think differently and see the edge.

bling joshOne of our interns, Joshua, has chosen to prepare for a business career with a focus on marketing. He was selected to serve as an executive intern charged with the responsibility of identifying and evaluating every possible customer touchpoint - the obvious as well as the obscure. He joined the newly formed PEMCO merchandising team and could have easily been overwhelmed by the collective years of experience that was in the room. But that was not the case. In fact, Josh was dubbed as the teams "king of bling."  (He's got a pretty awesome shoe collection too!)

Josh, like so many of the PEMCO interns, showed drive, ambition, creativity, and a motivation to succeed. Most importantly, he learned to look beyond the obvious to see what others don't . He learned to ask could questions, listen to the answers being given, and to view things from multiple perspectives. The story of the "quarters edge" clearly had a special meeting to Josh.

As students have come and gone through the PEMCO internship program, I've heard a lot of thank yous and I've received many notes of appreciation. The truth is that these kids recharge my batteries. They remind me of what it's like to be curious and to ask "why not?" 

Meet Joshua Sloan:

I asked Josh five questions about himself.  These were his responses.

Hometown - Bellevue, Washington

Hobbies: Playing and watching just about every sport on the planet. Reading classic novels. Watching movies (my favorite is Star Wars). Watching TV shows (I love Breaking Bad). Playing Video Games. Traveling.

University: I attend The George Washington University in Washington D.C.

Favorite Quote: My favorite quote is: "Happiness does not lie in happiness, but in the achievement of it" - Fyodor Dostoevsky

Role Model: My role model is my mom - Michelle Sloan. As for a reason why my Mom is my role model, well it’s pretty simple. She has been living her life - for a very long time - while at the same time battling cancer. The thing she always says to me is that she lives her life with a side of cancer. She doesn't let the cancer dictate what happens to her for one second. Of course she goes in for treatment all the time and yes she has to do a bunch of things because of it, but she doesn’t let it hinder her ability to be a mom and good friend. It puts everything in perspective, and allows me to discern the differences between what is really important and what isn’t. No matter what is happening to me, chances are there is something worse (happening to someone else).

Find out more about Joshua by visiting and/or connecting with him via LinkedIn: Joshua Sloan

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The Fine Print

Rod Brooks (that's me) is VP & CMO of PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company and serves as Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA).  It's important to disclose both of those relationships and to be clear that this is my personal blog where I share thoughts and opinions that are solely my own.  Contact me!

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