SOCORRO, N.M., Feb. 7, 2000 -- Two students in New Mexico Tech's Management Department will have an opportunity to spend the summer of 2000, and subsequent summers, working as interns for United Airlines in Portland, Maine.
"United offers a lot of internships, but this is the first one specifically for management students at Tech," said Dr. Peter C. Anselmo, Associate Professor of Management. "This will expose our students to the world, and introduce the world to our department, as part of an ongoing and never-ending effort to market the department and find real-world opportunities for our students."
Paul Torres of Socorro, a member of the Management Department Advisory Board, agreed. "I think it's great," he said. "(The program) will be very valuable for the students."
Anselmo said the student interns will spend the summer at the Portland International Jetport in Portland, Maine. The United operation at Portland also provides ground handling for TWA and Air Nova, an Air Canada express carrier. "The Jetport is very busy in the summer, because that area is a popular vacation/summer home spot for people on the East Coast," he said.
"We hope this will be the beginning of many internship opportunities for our students," he said. "Right now we're working on securing other internships with several large employers in New Mexico."
The United Airlines internships are being offered through Bob Stapp, United's General Manager for Customer Service in Portland, and a member of the New Mexico Tech Management Department's Advisory Board. Stapp's son, Ian Stapp, graduated from Tech in December with a Bachelor of Science degree in Management.
"He liked what he saw when he came down here, and is really sold on our degree," said Anselmo of the elder Stapp, who has been on the Advisory Board since October 1998.
Anselmo said the internship offer was the result of a meeting with department faculty and the board. "We were brainstorming ways to promote our students. Bob said, 'I'll hire two this summer. If it works out, we'll do it every year,'" said Anselmo.
Traditionally, student internship programs are "pipelines to the outside world" that very often lead to job offers, said Anselmo. "And that's the bottom line: Jobs for our graduates."
According to United Airlines, each internship is comprised of two major components, including basic job duties such as loading and unloading baggage, and assisting customers at the ticket counter and departure gate.
The second component involves spending regular, structured time with the general manager learning about management and personnel issues, organization culture, and work processes within a large, complex system.
Interns will be paid $8.75 an hour for a 30-hour week (an increase is pending). In addition, interns will be awarded one, free, round-trip pass to any United destination in the United States for each month of the internship. Even so, "The students won't be doing it for the money," Anselmo said. "They'll be trying to get experience and contacts."
Anselmo also is working to enlarge the Management Department Advisory Board from its present seven members to 12, including one Tech alumnus. "I hope to have this done by late spring, in time for the board's next scheduled meeting," he said. The board meets twice a year.
The department goal is to have a variety of internships to offer its students. "Take Bob Stapp, for example," said Anselmo. "He likes the unique degree we offer, and thinks that the skills and techniques our students learn here at Tech give them what they need to be successful in their working lives.
"First, there's Tech's basic science and math foundation, and then there's our own department curriculum with its strong emphasis on problem-solving," said Anselmo. "We do a lot of projects oriented toward developing cognitive, analytical skills that are both qualitative and quantitative," he said.
Tech management graduates, he added, have found jobs as systems analysts, financial analysts, stockbrokers, and accountants, among others.
"Nearly all of our graduates are doing well, and more than a few are doing quite well financially," said Anselmo. "One December graduate took a job with a starting salary that is higher than any of his professors are paid."
Tech students wanting additional information should contact Anselmo at 835-5438 or e-mail him at email@example.com.
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