I am currently sitting 240 feet up in the air in the Empire State Building while I visit ZS’s New York office from my home office in Philadelphia. The breathtaking views around me—both in New York and Philadelphia—only begin the list of unexpected surprises I’ve encountered since starting my internship as a Strategy Insights & Planning intern.
Not only did I learn I would be working high above the city on the 35th floor with views of downtown Philadelphia and the Delaware River, I also realized I would be given a lot of responsibility, even as an intern. At ZS, interns are given the same responsibilities as full-time associates—there’s no such thing as coffee-grabbing or document-filing roles here. In my first few weeks, I had already conducted analyses, sat in on calls and created decks for a client project. It’s refreshing to be presented with such high expectations, and even more fulfilling when I reach them. I can’t begin to describe the sense of accomplishment (and rush of relief) I felt when a client specifically called out one of my slides as their favorite.
ZS offers numerous avenues for exploration. Outside of client projects, I’ve also worked in the oncology and behavioral insights spaces—areas of personal interest—and delved into ZS’s current insights in both fields. Between online seminars, lunch TED Talks and workshops on topics such as public speaking and effective communication, there are countless opportunities to pursue new topics.
Beyond the floor-to-ceiling windows of the office and project work, ZSers find a way to have fun. In June, we participated in an all-day ZS Cares day of service in Philly where we partnered with the SHARE Food Program to prepare an upcoming food package shipment. And just last week, the interns piled onto a bus, armed with a loud Bluetooth speaker, for a day on the beach at Point Pleasant filled with relaxing on the shore, beach volleyball and ice cream on the boardwalk.
And finally—it’s been said before, but I’ll say it again—the people of ZS have been the defining point of my internship. ZSers are overwhelmingly approachable, and I have no fear going up to anyone in the office for advice on slide design, help on an Excel function or even for a tutorial on how to work the intimidating gourmet coffee machine.
I can’t believe that my internship is ending in just a few short weeks, but I’m thankful for the opportunities I’ve had so far to soar to new heights with ZS!
This post was written by Annie, a student at the University of Pennsylvania studying psychology. This summer, she's interning at ZS’s Philadelphia office.