Feature Stories 2016: Sarah Lavalette: Internships in human resources

Feature Stories 2016: Sarah Lavalette: Internships in human resources
Sarah Lavalette: Internships in human resources

Sarah Lavalette '16 completed internships at the UMass President's Office and the Rockport Company.

Year: Class of 2016
Major: Management/Organizational Leadership
Hometown: Wallingford, CT
Internships: UMass President's Office, The Rockport Company
Leadership: President, Alpha Sigma Tau sorority
Next steps: Career in human resources

Preparing for a career in human resources

Both of my internships as a human resources (HR) intern gave me confidence in my career path.

While I enjoyed studying human resources and organizational leadership, it was hard to tell if it would be the right path for me simply based on my classes. Now that I have real experience in the field, I know that it’s the right path for me and that I'll enjoy a career in human resources.

One of my biggest fears about graduating was that I would have the necessary knowledge, but not the necessary skills and experience to start my career. I don’t feel as worried now that I've worked hard to find different internships that have given me a wide range of experience in the field.

I’ve been able to learn about recruiting, policy writing, onboarding and training, personnel issues, benefits and compensation, and many other aspects of HR.

Now that I have both knowledge and experience with these things, I feel prepared to start working after graduation. I’m more confident that I’ll be able to complete the necessary tasks and responsibilities my job requires.

Finding career advice

Go to the Career Development Center (CDC). The advice you can get from them about your resume, cover letter, interview skills, and your career path in general will be extremely valuable.

After getting help with my resume at the CDC, I received calls from three different intern programs asking about interviews.

You may think you’ll never get a certain internship, but you could be surprised. It’s worth applying because you could end up with a really great opportunity at an amazing company.

Building leadership skills

I was president of my sorority, Alpha Sigma Tau. It was an incredible experience that gave me the opportunity to really work on my leadership skills.

It also gave me many opportunities to volunteer and help the community. I learned so much and gained great networking opportunities by being part of this organization.

More information

Career Development Center