Business

Johnathan Medina, Tech Advocacy in DC

This fall I had the opportunity to intern with a trade group called the Internet Association (IA). IA focuses on advocating for its member companies in Washington D.C. and state governments throughout the country. IA’s member companies include some of the largest technology firms in the world like Google, Facebook, Amazon etc. My co-workers had all worked in high levels of government from being a Chief of Staff to Nancy Pelosi, to running multi-million-dollar digital technology acquisition programs. Being around such talented and knowledgeable people helps you better understand the reality of different career paths.

Johnathan Medina
Johnathan Medina

My role on the team was as a Government Relations intern where I worked with the Policy and GR teams to analyze legislation, cover hearings, and produce reports that would be sent to policy professionals at our member companies. This was an eye-opening experience being involved directly in Washington D.C. politics and learning how policy is developed and advocated from a business perspective. Most of my portfolio was working on Cloud-Computing technology and the discussion surrounding its regulation for financial services and institutions. Through this project I was able to learn more about the industry, which was very important in helping me land my future job. One of the skills I developed strongly from the experience is being able to read legal language and think with the mind of a lawyer. Compliance is a mix of policy and law and it is a field I am excited to be part of as it grows.

My personal time in DC was very rewarding as well since the city offers a nearly non-stop slate of activities. I enjoyed being able to attend events in DC from the numerous organizations and the opportunity to connect with other alums is unparalleled. The experience was also helpful in discovering what you actually enjoy doing on a day to day basis which is more valuable than anything else in the end.

Johnathan Medina is a recent graduate of the MAIR program. He also interned last summer at the European Institute of Asian Studies as part of the The European and Global Internship Program in Brussels.

MAIR Program at the Maxwell School
Maxwell-in-Washington Program

Johnathan Medina Researches Fintech in Southeast Asia for the EU

Erica Rawlins Learns to be Adaptable in PR

I spent my summer interning with The Brandman Agency. It is a global public relations and digital marketing agency located in the core of the city that never sleeps. I have had the opportunity to work with numerous luxurious travel and lifestyle brands from all over the world.

Erica Rawlins
Erica Rawlins

This internship provided the opportunity to learn behind the scenes of branding for a client from the business and communications perspective. I’ve learned that it is imperative to understand that the world of communications isn’t predictable and as a practitioner one must be adaptable. Furthermore, this was my first time working with an agency. The day to day duties differ and I embrace tackling different problems every day.

The international relations aspect of my degree program provides a different perspective as to why and how global clients interact with their stakeholders. It’s truly fulfilling learning the intricate details of the travel industry because it’s impacted through policy, economics and brand awareness. Many of my family members are direct recipients of the changing tides of the travel industry, I am so fortunate to do work that impacts many families that look just like mine.

One of the highlights of my experience was sitting down and having an intimate conversation with the executive team. The leaders of the agency are all women and it gave the interns (a total of four of us) the opportunity to ask seasoned professionals their advice navigating a career in travel. Working on teams led by successful, humble women is inspiring. I’m grateful for this experience and network of persistent women.

Erica Rawlins continues to intern in New York City at APCO Worldwide, while completing her joint MAIR/MSPR degree at the Maxwell and Newhouse Schools.

MAIR/MSPR Program at the Maxwell and Newhouse Schools

Robb Woodruff’s Professional & Cultural Experience in Southeast Asia

Singapore is a unique city that offers a cosmopolitan experience in the heart of Southeast Asia. Culturally, it is a mix of neighboring Asian nations such as Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. There is a parallel to the New York City metaphor of a “melting pot” of people, religions and cultures. This can be seen especially through all the different types of food that you can find in the food centers.

Shifting from academic life to professional was an adjustment but a welcome one. I worked in the finance department of Pratt & Whitney, an American aerospace firm that produces jet turbines for commercial and government aircraft. My work focused on performing invoice price verifications, asset inventory identification and management and generating comparative tables for hours workers logged. I was fortunate to have supportive coworkers that assisted me with understanding the different tasks and projects that were assigned to me.  I ended each day at 4:50pm which left me time to enjoy parts of the city with some daylight still left.

Robb Woodruff with Singapore program participants
Robb Woodruff (back, 2nd from L) with SU Singapore program participants and Program Director, Professor Gary Lapoint (middle, 2nd from L) plus fellow Maxwell MAIR student, Mark Aludino (middle, 1st from L)

Despite being a small island, there are many areas to explore in the city and always something new to see. Our program group was fortunate enough to travel to Malaysia and Indonesia as well. In Malacca, there were bike taxis decorated in vibrant colors and booming stereo systems. It was fun to see the wide array of taxis, and how the drivers chose to personalize them. Indonesia was a nice escape to a little resort with an amazing beach. The water was piercingly blue, and crystal clear which made leaving after two days even more difficult. All in all, the Singapore program was an amazing experience that gave me professional and culture experience in Southeast Asia.

MAIR Program at the Maxwell School
Singapore Summer Internships Program
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Mark Aludino Delves Into Supply Chains in Singapore

With its bustling ports and world-class airport, Singapore functions as a hub in the Southeast Asian region. As such, goods transit through the island making it a haven for logistics companies, such as the YCH Group, where I interned for the summer. This opportunity to be part of Singapore’s largest home-grown supply chains company served to complement the year I spent at the Maxwell School under the MAIR program.

As an intern for the Consumer Lifestyle and E-Commerce Department, I was tasked to provide oversight on the company’s budding e-commerce hub, which provides added-value services for various consumer goods. With this responsibility, I split time handling business development affairs at the office level and experiencing first-hand the e-commerce operations at the warehouse. Through this attachment, I observed the intricate links in the supply chain process that enables an order made online to be delivered to the end-customer. What seemingly looks like a straightforward flow is riddled with partnerships and sharing of responsibilities between different stakeholders, from the producer to the warehouse team to the last-mile provider.

Mark Aludino at YCH Group
Mark Aludino (left) with a fellow SU student intern

During my stay, I regularly produced and updated two outputs: the E-Commerce Issue Log and the Evaluation of YCH’s Last-Mile Service Provider. In the log, I highlighted the concerns that negatively affected the timeliness and accuracy of the picking, sorting, and packing of products while informing the department of the most common problems as reflected in the statistics I provided. Even more, in the evaluation of the firm’s last-mile partner, I kept track of their performance to ensure that they are meeting the agreed-upon requirements. In fact, one of the highlights of my internship was presenting these data in a high-level meeting with our last-mile partner.

While I was mainly attached to the e-commerce arm, I was also brought in to provide my insight on contracts, where my governance training proved handy. It was then that I realized that there is a need to balance parity and business decision-making under this private setting. Overall, through SU’s Singapore Program, I increased my knowledge of logistics and service provision, which are crucial in international development.

SU Singapore Students 2019
Mark Aludino (2nd from left) and fellow Singapore program students.
MAIR Program at the Maxwell School
Singapore Summer Internships Program
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Yue Chen Has Front Row Seat on US-China Trade

Over the spring, I served as a communications intern at the US-China Business Council (USCBC) in Washington, DC. USCBC is a private, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization of approximately 200 American companies that do business with China. Its mission is to expand the US-China commercial relationship to the benefit of its membership and, more broadly, the US economy.

Based on my background in international relations and public relations, I helped the communications & publications team at USCBC with daily news updates and social media management. I also helped interview Chinese scholars and translate documents into English for the publication in USCBC’s digital magazine – the China Business Review. Since the U.S. levied its first round of punitive tariffs in 2018, tensions have emerged between the U.S. and China, becoming a major global concern. It was a valuable opportunity for me to intern at USCBC around this period of time as I was able to obtain the first-hand materials and pay close attention to US-China trade issues.

In addition, I was very fortunate to have joined and helped with USCBC’s events and gained precious insights on US-China relations. When Chinese Premier Liu He visited Washington, DC for trade talks with President Trump on January 31, USCBC held its premier conference – Forecast 2019 – on China’s business and political environment and discussed the prospects of trade negotiations. On the Forecast, experts from think tanks, the US Senate and the US House of Representatives talked about the most focused on issues about US-China relations such as cybersecurity, intellectual property, tariffs and subsidies, etc. USCBC also co-hosted the US-China Innovation Forum with CSIS, where American and Chinese representatives from industry, finance, government and think tanks discussed how to best foster, protect, and advance innovation.

Thanks to the Maxwell DC Program, I am here to pursue my public diplomacy practice at the heart of global policy in Washington, DC. Interning at USCBC was a great chance for me to explore US-China trade relations and lay the foundation for my future career.

USCBC Forcast 2019 conference

Yue Chen is a recent alum of the joint MAIR/MSPR degree where she studied at the prestigious Maxwell and Newhouse Schools at Syracuse University. She formerly interned at Temasek’s Stewardship Asia Centre through SU’s Summer Internships in Singapore program.

MAIR/MSPR Program at the Maxwell and Newhouse Schools
Maxwell-in-Washington Program
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Sören Reischert Takes a Year for Professional Experience

Being on the Atlantis program, a partnership between Syracuse University and the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, means that studying at Maxwell only formed the first half of my postgraduate studies. But instead of finishing my studies in Germany immediately after completing my coursework in Syracuse, I decided to take a year out in order to gain some more professional experience. The first of three planned placements took me to Dublin, Ireland where I worked as a research assistant in Teneo’s strategy team.

Sören Reischert at Teneo Networking Event

Teneo is an international advisory firm integrating the disciplines of strategic communications, investor relations, financial advisory, corporate governance advisory and political & policy risk advisory among others. As part of my role, I worked on a wide range of projects and my tasks included everything from stakeholder analysis over media monitoring to pitching press releases to Irish national newspapers. One of my favorite tasks was certainly participating in brainstorming sessions at the beginning of new projects. Teneo’s approach to making business ties in exceptionally well with my studies in Public Policy and International Relations. This is because Declan Kelly, the founder and CEO of Teneo, has always understood that being successful in today’s world means working across borders and connecting experts from all disciplines.

Former Irish Prime Minister John Bruton (right) discusses Brexit with British public servants, Irish business representatives and Teneo employees

Teneo also offered brilliant networking opportunities as the company has offices all around the world and works with the world’s biggest and most influential companies. I even had the opportunity to meet some leading Irish and European politicians as well as international sports personalities. Lastly, Dublin is a great city full of friendly people and interesting history.

I would encourage everyone who is thinking about a professional year to do so, as it brings invaluable experiences and enables you to approach the second year of your studies with a new perspective and clearer understanding of where your degree can take you. My next step will lead me to London where I have two more placements in communications firms lined up.

Soren Reischert is a MAIR/ATL student in the Atlantis Transatlantic Dual Degree program completing the MAIR degree from the Maxwell School in Syracuse and an MPP from the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. He formerly interned at YCH Group in Singapore and is currently interning at Quiller Consultants in London.

Quick chat with players of New Zealand’s Rugby team, the All Blacks, during a photocall

Atlantis Transatlantic Dual Degree Program

The Maxwell School

The Hertie School of Governance

Sören Reischert, Hard Business Talks in Singapore

Carol Tojeiro, Doing Business at World Bank

This summer I had the opportunity to join the Doing Business department at the World Bank. Doing Business is an annual flagship report which measures business regulation in 190 economies. Each economy is ranked according to 11 sets of indicators. There are combined into an overall “ease of doing business” ranking.

Read the Report: http://www.doingbusiness.org/en/reports/global-reports/doing-business-2019

I was part of the Registering Property indicator, where I worked with my team to measure the time, costs, and procedures needed to conduct a transfer of property between two local parties. We closely followed the Doing Business methodology, which you can read more about on http://www.doingbusiness.org/methodology.

Working in the Doing Business department was a truly rewarding experience. It did not only enhance my communication and analytical skills but also taught me about the strategies and components that go behind a ranking report. The working environment was also very international, which made me feel very welcome and taught me about other working cultures.

Carol Tojeiro at World Bank

MAIR/MAECN Program at the Maxwell School

Maxwell-in-Washington Program

Carol Tojeiro Featured in Cornell Policy Review

Carol Tojeiro at the UN Migration Agency in Ghana

Maxwell Programs in East Asia

The Maxwell School offers a variety of opportunities to study or work in East Asia. Through Syracuse University’s partnerships with foreign colleges and companies, students have the chance to live, work (and play) in some of the biggest cultural, political or business centers in the region. Funding to offset airfare and any changes in the cost of living are offered for all opportunities, and is quite generous in some instances.

Beijing. (nemomemini @Flickr)

The Beijing program is offered each fall. Syracuse University runs a center in Beijing in partnership with Tsinghua University, the most prestigious university in China. Tsinghua is located in Beijing’s Wudaokou neighborhood, a student area home to several universities. Maxwell students have the option of taking courses through the center – which offers SU courses taught by SU faculty – or taking graduate courses in English at Tsinghua’s School of Public Policy. Participants can enroll in courses across the social sciences, including Anthropology, Economics, History, Political Science and Public Administration, most of which are China-themed. On top of courses, part-time internships are also available for 1 to 3 credits. Past placements include Chinese NGOs, PR firms, the US Embassy in Beijing and various Chinese research organizations.

Singapore. (Copyright: Google)

The Singapore program is a summer internship program. As Singapore is one of Asia’s leading international business hubs, students typically work full-time at finance, business or trade-related organizations. Past placements have included US multinationals, TEMASEK (a Singapore sovereign wealth fund), and the American Chamber of Commerce. Maxwell students can take up to six credits – their internship and an independent study.

Seoul. (HR AN@Flickr)

The Maxwell School also offers fall programs at local universities in Seoul or Tokyo. Both programs offer a diverse set of social science courses, in an Asian context. In Seoul, graduate students take International Relations coursework in English at Yonsei University or Korea University. It is possible for students to intern while studying, but this program does not help with placement. Students interested in studying in Japan can do so at Waseda University’s Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies, located in downtown Tokyo. No Japanese language skills are required, but students must enroll in Japanese language courses while studying.

The Maxwell School’s List of Global Programs

SU Beijing

Singapore Summer Internship Program

World Partner Program in Seoul

World Partner Program in Tokyo

Alejandro Icazbalceta Interns at the US Small Business Administration

Alejandro Icazbalceta graduated from the Maxwell School in 2017 with an MA in International Relations. He participated in the Maxwell-in-Washington Global Program in the summer of 2017.

This summer, I had the opportunity to intern in Washington DC at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA).

The Small Business Administration (SBA) was created in 1953 as an independent agency of the U.S. Federal Government to aid, counsel, assist, and protect the interests of small business enterprises. The mission of the SBA is to reach into the corners of the United States to promote entrepreneurship, small business growth, and to strengthen the U.S. economy by providing the critical funding, counseling, oversight, and administrative support to small business.

The most relevant of my tasks were:

  • Oversaw the policies, regulations, and constraints that affect small business creation and expansion
  • Develop recommendations, policies, and technical assistance tools for small businesses
  • Participate in international trade projects
  • Development of entrepreneurial initiatives to support the creation of small business
  • Meetings with foreign business delegations

This internship experience was an incredible tool for my professional profile since most of my previous professional experience was mainly in the Mexican governmental sector designing public policy projects. However, the most effective policy against poverty, marginalization and inequality is labor income. Thus, the SBA was the best place for understanding these factors and how they interact together to create economic prosperity.

Alejandro at the SBA.

Finally, my internship at the SBA provided me with a greater understanding about how to strengthen small and medium enterprises, which in the end means greater levels of prosperity and opportunities for lower social classes. Moreover, this internship taught me that an effective government with a dynamic private sector is the most powerful combination for economic and social progress.

Maxwell MAIR Degree

Maxwell-in-Washington Program

Alex Macdonald Gains International Business Experience in Singapore

Alex is currently completing his joint MAIR/MAECN, which is a Master of Arts in International Relations and a Master of Arts in Economics. His internship was completed as part of the Singapore Summer Internship Program.

When we discuss the pivot to Asia in international relations, we usually refer to a realignment of US foreign policy. However, over the past twenty years, unprecedented Asian economic growth has led the whole global economy to pivot to Asia. While China usually takes the spotlight, the so-called “Asian Tiger” countries have played an essential role in this transformation. Exemplary of these countries is Singapore, which in the past fifty years has gone from being a minor colonial trading post to becoming one of the world’s most important ports and a major global financial hub.

Alex with some of his Pratt and Whitney co-workers at the Geylang Serai Ramadan bazaar.

This summer I had the opportunity, through S.U. Abroad’s Singapore program, to immerse myself in the vibrant business culture of this incredible country. I spent the summer as a finance and management intern at Pratt and Whitney, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of military and commercial airplane engines. In my role, I was given a variety projects on which to work ranging from regular finance-related tasks, such as maintaining the monthly profit and loss report, to process improvement projects aimed at streamlining production, purchasing, and shipping to deal with the large amount of growth the company is experiencing.

In addition to the many finance and management related skills which I was able to further develop in my role, the opportunity to finally work in a region of the world which I had studied academically for so long was invaluable. As someone who hopes to work internationally in the private sector, this internship exposed me to a very different business culture from what I was used to and has given me a solid experiential foundation for my future in the international business world.

While I was in Singapore, I was also lucky enough to be able to take advantage of its proximity to the rest of South-East Asia and was able to do some traveling in my time off from work. Overall, I am very thankful to have had this opportunity to work in Singapore this summer. It was an amazing experience and has reaffirmed my interest in working in Asia as well as sparking an even deeper interest in South-East Asia in particular.

Alex at Singapore’s famous Gardens by the Bay.

Singapore Summer Internships Program

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