It wasn’t just the work that Vincent Silveira ’13 enjoyed during his internship at Smart Devine, a full-service accounting and financial services firm in Philadelphia.
“It’s really cool to be a young intern in Philly. You meet other interns, go out after work and enjoy the city. It’s great.”
The Center for Career and Professional Development at Cabrini College helped Silveira secure an internship at Smart Devine, where his abilities were put to the test from day one.
“I was assigned a project and asked to go prove myself. And I said, ‘Yeah, I can do this’ and I did it. Then I was given even more responsibilities.” Besides getting relevant experience in his field, Silveira believes it is also the “small things” that made his internship important to his career success. “You learn how to be in an office and how to navigate office politics and co-workers. Your internship teaches you those small things.” For Silveira, who majored in accounting and finance, the small things landed him in the big leagues. Today, he is living and working in Manhattan as an audit associate at Deloitte, one of the “BigFour” professional financial services firms.
This success has given Silveira some perspective on how to secure a competitive job and succeed at it.
“Your internship during college gets you the job after graduation,” he said. “Your internship also teaches you those important real-world skills you need to thrive at that first job after college.” Without mentoring from Nancy Hutchison, director of The Center for Career and Professional Development, Silveira said that his professional and personal experiences might not have happened.
“The Career Center was really good in making sure my resume was professional and captured my accomplishments. Nancy kept me on track and reminded me when application deadlines were approaching. I might have missed them otherwise. Even after I had the internship, Nancy contacted me twice just to see how I was doing.”
Vincent Silveira ’13 Audit Associate, Deloitte
Lauren Chieffo ’11 knew in high school that it was important for a college to have a strong professional network.
“Most Cabrini business majors land jobs within six months of graduation, because of the strong partnerships that Cabrini’s Career Center has cultivated in the business community,” Chieffo said from her office in Washington, D.C.
“That was a deciding factor in my choosing Cabrini, because the right network made all the difference in today’s job market.”
The Center for Career and Professional Development linked Chieffo to an event-planning internship at the Philadelphia Business Journal. “It was the starting point for my sales knowledge and experience,” Chieffo said. Even before her internship, Chieffo, who majored in marketing and international business, took advantage of the Career Center’s services.
“I went to a few workshops at the Career Center on resume writing and found a good sounding board in the staff when figuring out my career path.” On a trip with an international business class to Washington, D.C., to meet with representatives from the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank Group, Chieffo was captivated by the city and knew it was the place for her.
Her internship supervisor at the Philadelphia Business Journal suggested that after she graduated she apply to their sister publication, the Washington Business Journal. She did so and was soon hired.
“My internship was the connection. The rest is history.”
Lauren Chieffo ’11 Marketing and Sales Manager of Domestic Home Entertainment, National Geographic Society
“When I wanted an internship, I told the Career Center and the next week I had an interview lined up,” Matthew Piontkowski ’11 said during a break between meetings at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
“In fact, the Career Center set up all three of my internships. My resume looks great, with experiences and skills that employers are looking for these days.”
The first interview for an internship that The Center for Career and Professional Development arranged for Piontkowski was in marketing at the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce in Center City.
“The Career Center really helped. I had never even heard of the Chamber of Commerce before the interview,” recalled Piontkowski, who majored in marketing and international business.
His second internship was in event planning at the Philadelphia Business Journal, followed by a public relations internship at Devine + Partners, both also in Center City.
“When you establish connections through an internship it may lead back to a full-time opportunity,” said Piontkowski, who was hired after graduation as a marketing associate at the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce, where he had completed his first internship.
“All students should apply for an internship,” Piontkowski said. “Internships teach you things that you cannot learn in the classroom. In all three of my internships, I was more than just an intern. I was part of a team.”
Piontkowski laughed when remembering those days. “They had me calling the president of a company during one of my roles. An intern, calling a president! Overall, I was able to take what I learned from those three positions and apply them to the work that I do today.”
Matthew Piontkowski ’11 Development Coordinator, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Brittani Williams ’11 credits her internship and The Center for Career and Professional Development with helping her land a great job after graduation while she pursues a master’s degree in counseling psychology.
When she first approached the Career Center, she wasn’t even sure she’d have time for an internship because she was already working full‑time while attending Cabrini.
The Career Center worked with Brittani so she could use her job at American Eagle Outfitters as an internship, opting to ramp-up her responsibilities with that company.
“A requirement of the internship was that I needed to tackle new tasks in the workplace to earn credit toward my degree,” Brittani said. “The Career Center was instrumental in securing me these new responsibilities. Had that not happened, my skills could have gone under‑utilized.”
Brittani believes the internship taught her leadership skills that employers seek. “My internship experience prepared me to work with people from all over the world and provided me with customer service skills that every company looks for when hiring.”
When it came to landing that great job after graduation, the Career Center was there for her. “The Career Center assisted me with resume writing, applications, and they even found the job announcement for my current position at University of Maryland.”
Brittani Williams ’11 Senior Military and Veteran Academic Advisor University of Maryland University College
Danielle Alio ’12 admits that her internship in television news for Fox 29’s “Good Day Philadelphia” got the attention of employers after she graduated.
“When I was interviewed for my current job at Princeton University, they were very impressed with my internship experience. They knew that I had learned the necessary real‑world skills to thrive.” Danielle felt her internship prepared her for the demanding work she does today as a multimedia specialist in the Office of Communications at Princeton.
“My internship taught me how to adapt to sudden change in the workplace. Breaking news could happen at any moment. I had to learn to be ready for that big story to come in, whatever it may be.” The personalized attention from Nancy Hutchison, director of The Center for Career and Professional Development, meant a great deal to Danielle.
“Nancy came to visit me one day during my internship and met with my supervisor. I really liked that she met with my supervisor because it showed that the Career Center cared about my progress and success.”
Danielle Alio ’12 Multimedia Specialist Office of Communications, Princeton University
From his office at Delaware Investments of the Macquarie Group where he works in mutual funds, Ryan Kaysen ’10 says his finance internship with Avi Kantor at ING Partners was crucial to his success.
“My internship put me on a path to get the career I wanted,” Ryan said. Prior to Delaware Investments, he worked in various roles at SEI Financial.
For this business administration and finance major, his two‑semester internship put the knowledge he learned in the classroom from accomplished faculty to real-world use.
“I was able to be in client meetings and see how these professionals interacted with clients. That helps me even today.”
The Center for Career and Professional Development was there every step of the way.
“I told the staff at the Career Center about my major and my career goals and they helped me develop my resume and narrow down my internship search,” he recalls.
But the personalized attention and mentoring went one step further. “The Career Center even set up the interview for my internship at Avi Kantor.”
Ryan Kaysen ’10 Internal Consultant Delaware Investments, a member of the Macquarie Group
Kelsey Kastrava ’12 had a clear advantage when entering the non‑profit marketing and advancement job market after four of her five internships were in that field.
“My internships—at Project H.O.M.E., Catholic Relief Services, Cabrini Mission Core, and Cabrini College’s Office of Institutional Advancement—made me more marketable to advancement offices that were hiring,” said Kelsey, who works as assistant to the director of advancement at Mercy Vocational High School.
“Mercy Vocational was impressed with my ability to learn so much in semester-long positions and they were happy to add me to their staff.” In addition to her internships for non-profits, Kelsey was a “10! Show” intern at NBC 10.
It was mentoring through The Center for Career and Professional Development that got Kelsey thinking about what post-graduation career might best fit her interests and how an internship might help achieve her career goals. “My first internship, at Project H.O.M.E., introduced me to the multi-faceted field of fundraising and development for non-profits,” Kelsey said. The Career Center staff was instrumental in securing those internships and they helped Kelsey personalize resumes and cover letters that best defined her skills and real-world experience.
As graduation neared, it was the Career Center that referred Kelsey to the position she now holds at Mercy Vocational High School.
Kelsey Kastrava ’12 Assistant to the Director of Advancement Mercy Vocational High School
“My advisors gave me great guidance on academics, on my career, and on personal things too.
“If they knew someone I should network with, they would put me in touch in a heartbeat. That’s something hard to get at a bigger school.
“I did a summer internship and a co-op in my junior year. Experiences like that help you figure out your career path so that you don’t waste time moving in the wrong direction. They are really valuable, and Cabrini promotes them strongly.
“My senior year business capstone course was a great preparation for the professional world. We focused on the kind of job we wanted and the steps we needed to take to get it.”
Quiana Volney ’12 Business Administration with minors in International Business and Marketing Traffic Coordinator at Jack Morton Worldwide, a leading branding agency
“My internships at Cabrini gave me a competitive advantage to better build connections and have relevant work experience before graduation.
“I had the opportunity to test the waters in multiple facets of the communications world—non-profit management, public relations, and marketing—and get a feel for what best suited my skill set and turn that into a career.”
Ashley Correll ’09 Director of Beyond Insurance® Workshops Addis Intellectual Capital, Tampa, Fla.
“My interest in photography came from Cabrini. I took a class and discovered I had a natural eye for it. After Cabrini I held several jobs, all the time doing photography on the side. I started SP Photography in 2009.
“Cabrini encourages you to be involved in multiple things. I did practicums in radio and video. I worked as managing editor of The Loquitur, and that taught me about time management, being efficient, and communicating. Those are a huge part of running a business.
“Cabrini is smaller, so you have more opportunity for dialogue and discussion. You get to know so many different types of people. You can build your network. That’s great preparation for the way the world is right now.”
Sharvon P. Urbannavage ’03 Owner, Photographer, and Videographer SP Photography
“An internship was never something I thought of as an integral part of my college education until I came to Cabrini College. However, every professor spoke about the importance and benefits that came from participating in the Co‑Op program, but the benefits I experienced were greater than I could have ever imagined.
“During my senior year at Cabrini, I signed up for an internship. The internship I was assigned to acted as a great supplement to the topics I was learning in class. There is absolutely no substitute for “real world” experience, and my internship through Cabrini provided me just that.
“I graduated in December 2009 and was fortunate enough to be offered a full-time position at the accounting firm where I interned and have been working for that company ever since.
“Since graduation I have been involved in multiple mergers and acquisitions, valuations, bankruptcy cases, profits plans, audits, tax planning, and tax return preparation for a wide variety of corporations. None of that would have been possible without the opportunity I was given at Cabrini.”
David Korpel ’09 Staff Accountant MargolisBecker, LLC
“Cabrini gives you all this opportunity at a very young age. Freshman year, I took a radio course and that summer I had an on‑air radio gig at Rock 107 in Scranton, Pa. I learned radio, video, PR, how to pitch an idea, how to work independently.
“Because Cabrini’s a small school, you get a lot of attention, and you get to be really creative.
“When I graduated, I needed to do something with my creativity. I started Trendhungry.com and just kept going from there.”
Jessie Holeva ’10 Fashion Blogger, Media Host, Fashionista TrendHungry.com, Philly.com’s Style Section, QVC, King of Prussia Mall Style Setter Recently quoted by The Wall Street Journal, Shape, and Woman’s Day
“The research experiences I had at Cabrini were absolutely essential for me getting into the Ph.D. program at Drexel.
“Junior year at Cabrini I did research on the immune system of an earthworm. It opened up so many opportunities.
“I was published in two science journals. I presented at three conferences. I learned to analyze peer-reviewed articles. I learned to write a thesis. I learned research technique, and in grad school, technique is huge.
“I’ve finished my second semester at Drexel University and I am an ‘A’ student. Cabrini did an excellent job. I’m happy where I am in life.
“I recently was part of a research team that published ‘Reduced Mammalian Target of Rapamycin Activity Facilitates Mitochondrial Retrograde Signaling and Increases Life Span in Normal Human Fibroblasts,’ in the journal Aging Cell (Vol. 12, Issue 4).”
Timothy Nacarelli ’11 Ph.D. student, Drexel University Molecular and Cellular Biology and Genetics
“I knew my internship experiences were an advantage, but I didn’t realize how valuable they would be until I found myself interviewing for full-time positions as I approached graduation.
“Through my interviews, I found myself feeling confident and prepared to tackle the entry-level jobs at hand.
“Furthermore, I had a portfolio chockfull of applicable projects that served to not only back my resume, but proved that I had already successfully handled many of the responsibilities expected of the entry level position. I had two and half years of diverse internship experience at the region’s top public relations and advertising firms.
“Because of the structured program put in place by Cabrini’s co-op/career services team, I found that my internships were of superior quality, and that made a significant difference when I began my job search.”
Laura Van De Pette ’07 Senior Account Executive Brownstein Group, Philadelphia
“Cabrini taught me to keep an open mind, work your hardest, and be respectful of others.
“One of the best things was having projects where we’d go into the field and talk to working professionals. We’d see how things are in real life.
“And a lot of my professors held positions in the field, so they could say, ‘OK, this is how we handled this situation when I was at company X.’
“At Cabrini, you learn how things really work.”
Justin DiPasquale ’10 Double Major in Human Resources and Finance Associate Financial Advisor, Alan Barlow & Associates
“Since I was little, I’ve always wanted to be a teacher. Seeing children excited to learn—that’s what makes me want to go to work every day.
“At Cabrini I learned to create lesson plans, teach to different learning styles, use technology, figure out students, and communicate with parents. I had field experiences in public schools, private schools, special education, and English as a Second Language.
“I wouldn’t have my job without those experiences, and I wouldn’t have had those experiences without Cabrini. I worked hard, and it paid off. I’m doing what I always dreamed of, and it feels pretty wonderful.”
Jessica Westbrook ’09, ’13 Double-major in Elementary Education and Special Education; Master of Education Second-grade teacher, Woodlyn Elementary School