Alexandra “Alex” Henke, is a junior EIA major from Johns Creek, GA that has been actively involved across campus in a number of roles. She currently serves as Treasurer of the Ivan Allen College Student Advisory Board (SAB), which exists to build community among and articulate the perspectives of IAC students, while advising administrators about issues that affect the college. In addition to her role on the SAB, Alex is Director of Alumni Relations for her sorority and a GT Housing Peer Leader. After graduation, Alex is considering a career with Teach for America. We asked her a few questions about her internships with the German-American Chamber of Commerce and the Georgia Department of Economic Development in 2008, and how her time at Tech helped her succeed in her internship.
What did you enjoy most about your internships and what did you find most challenging?
Working at the German-American Chamber of Commerce allowed me the chance to use my German and connect with my awesome coworkers from all over the U.S. and Germany. In the consulting department, that meant keeping up with several tasks at once, which required that I become comfortable with extensive cold calling to industry leaders. I found that such an experience really developed my professional skills. The best part of working at the Georgia Department of Economic Development was learning more about international business and marketing (as well as the free Coca-Cola!). The most challenging part of this internship was actually learning more about the filing taxes and securing health insurance in the U.S. so I could provide this information to business professionals relocated to Georgia from abroad.
Tell us about an experience that made an impression on you during your internships.
At the German-American Chamber of Commerce, I came into contact with individuals from a very diverse array of industries. One day I would be talking to someone from an agriculture conglomerate, and the next, to a high-fashion designer in New York. I really learned a lot of interesting things about how different industries function and how to talk to people from all walks of life.
In what ways did your time at Tech prepare you for the internships?
My German classes certainly came in handy interning at the German-American Chamber of Commerce. Both internships required extensive use of research and presentation skills that I developed through some of my very first international affairs classes at Tech.