This week’s featured Starlight Senior will soon graduate virtually from the UMKC Bloch School of Business. He excelled as a member of Starlight’s 2019 class of Bob Rohlf Interns, and now he is set to return this summer as a Starlight Operations intern.
Senior, University of Missouri-Kansas City
2019 Starlight Bob Rohlf Intern, Information Systems
Favorite college experience/memory:
My study-abroad program in London with the UMKC Bloch School in early summer 2019.
This inspired in me a passion to travel and experience new cultures. I grew immensely as a person while experiencing and exploring the diverse and unique culture of London while also making professional visits to a variety of businesses, including companies with Kansas City ties such as Cerner UK and VMLY&R. I have since traveled to Barcelona, Paris, New York City, Chicago and Israel.
What you’ll miss most with school being closed:
I will certainly miss the incredible friends I made and the organizations I was involved in.
It was difficult seeing some of my close friends move back to their hometowns eight weeks early, but I am grateful for the countless memories I have with them throughout college. I also miss my community service involvement in Alpha Phi Omega, a national service organization headquartered in Kansas City. I serve as VP of Fundraising and was looking forward to hosting more fundraisers that were cancelled due to campus and business closures. I also was a founder of a Colony of Phi Gamma Delta, where I served as the first treasurer and now as historian.
Best experience/memory with Starlight:
My favorite times at Starlight last season were undoubtedly the event nights. Working in that environment during Broadway shows and concerts was exciting and fun.
As last summer’s Information Systems intern, I interacted with almost every employee across all departments, and I enjoyed each moment. I also enjoyed the activities provided by the Bob Rohlf Internship program; as a business student, it was extremely interesting hearing from Starlight employees about their career paths during brown bag lunches, visiting leader.
Advice you’d give to college students to make the most of their internships:
Fully commit yourself to your company and push yourself to be the best employee you can be.
Try to make a positive impact in your organization or department. Don't be afraid to ask questions, get to know colleagues or take on challenges. If you feel like you aren't busy enough or don't feel challenged with your work, ask your supervisors, colleagues or even other departments in your organization if they would like help with any projects. That willingness to help and commitment to the organization can go a long way for you.
Plans following graduation:
My immediate plan is to return to Starlight in May as a summer Operations intern in May. I loved working at Starlight and could not be more excited to return!
Following this second internship at Starlight, I plan to teach English to young students in Israel. I love travel, experiencing new cultures and making positive impacts in peoples' lives. Living abroad is a dream of mine, and I believe this is the right time in my life to take on that challenge and pursue that dream. Following my return from this program, I hope to pursue a career path in the live entertainment industry.
Favorite musical and why:
I saw Hamilton while I was studying abroad in London. My favorite aspect of the production is the style of music. Hip-hop and rap are not traditional styles for musicals, but I found that the modern beats and lyrical wordplay made the historical storytelling highly engaging.
A favorite saying:
“The darkest nights make the brightest stars.” – Witt Lowry
While I think this quote applies well because stars shine at night on Starlight’s stage, the saying is much deeper. While life brings difficult times such as the ongoing pandemic right now, difficult times are when the biggest impacts can be made. I believe it’s important to strive to make positive impacts on others’ lives because you never know what they’re going through. Even the smallest generosities in simple interactions can change someone's mood, week or even life.
How Starlight will be a part of your future:
During my internship last summer, I learned that my parents’ first date was at a Starlight concert in the 1980s. I think the fact that I ended up working at Starlight without knowing this was destiny.
Starlight will always have a special place in my heart, and I am excited to return as an Operations intern this summer. After that, I will look forward to keeping Starlight close to me and returning as a guest.