Under the leadership of the Greater Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce, I have the pleasure of interviewing past interns from Workforce Solutions, Lamar State College-Port Arthur, and Woodrow Wilson Early High school. One mentee that I have had the privilege of talking with changed the way I view the commonly used adage “it’s not what you know, but who you know”. Ms. Carolyn Holman’s experience with the Chamber serves as an important reminder that “it’s not what you know or who you know, but who knows YOU”.
Carolyn was introduced to the Chamber through Workforce Solutions. Being at the Chamber allowed Carolyn to expand her skills in computer application programs, create bank deposit slips, invoices, decorate tables, booths, and gain knowledge on operating a postal machine to name a few. Carolyn enjoyed working alongside such friendly and uplifting coworkers, which created a positive work environment. Another aspect that Carolyn favored was being able to network with the vast businesses and members she was exposed to through the Chamber. “The Chamber did an outstanding job helping me learn essential skills and experience an office environment”, remarks Carolyn when she recounts her experience at the Chamber. When asked how her overall office skills improved by interning at the Chamber, Carolyn remarked that she felt she was around a 7 prior to her internship. Towards the end of her month-long internship, she felt that her office knowledge had grown exponentially to a 10!
While attending an event through the Chamber, Carolyn was approached by an Associate at Gulf Coast Health Center, who had seen some of Carolyn’s work. Through networking, Carolyn was hired on at Gulf Coast Health Center where she worked for 6 ½ years after her mentee ship at the Chamber. Carolyn’s advice to current and future interns is “to go for everything, learn as much as you can, smile, and be confident! If you’re scared of getting out into the business world, don’t be afraid because it’s a learning experience. The more you’re involved, the better you’ll be!”.
- Kali Murray
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