Ever since she can remember, Gustavus senior Marley Clark ’14 has loved spending time in cars. So it should be no surprise that Clark, a management major, decided to spend her summer in Michigan – the automobile capital of America – completing an internship with Chrysler Group, LLC.
“I have always wanted to work in the automotive industry so over fall break I applied to every marketing and sales internship at every major automotive company I could think,” the Glencoe, Minnesota native said. “The Chrysler Group, LLC Dodge Brand Internship specifically caught my eye though.”
Clark had an initial interview on Skype and was then flown to Detroit for a second interview. A week later she received a call that she had been offered the internship. “I was so excited, I cried,” Clark said.
As a Dodge Brand Intern, Clark has had a chance to work on several projects, mostly related to the Dodge Dart and Dodge Challenger models.
“Right now Dart is working on getting future product plans approved, so I have been researching and developing spreadsheet data for that,” Clark said. “I do a lot of research on competitors to compare their prices and features to ours. Through it all I am developing a ton of product knowledge.”
Clark and another Dodge Brand Intern were charged with creating a presentation to a large group of other Chrysler interns as a part of a case competition.
“It was a huge presentation that focused on Dart’s current products and marketing, as well as areas for opportunity,” Clark said.
Along with work in the corporate office, Clark has also had the opportunity to drive several dodge vehicles including the Charger SXT, an Avenger R/T, and a Challenger R/T Plus Blacktop Edition.
“We went to Chrysler’s test grounds and got to drive vehicles, off-road in Jeeps, and have professional drivers take us in SRT vehicles on the racetrack,” Clark said. “I was in a Challenger going 175 miles per hour!”
Clark says that valuable courses in the Economics and Management Department along with leadership experience that she developed through her involvement in a sorority helped her to secure the internship and thrive in the position.
“I am part of the Tau Mu Tau sorority and I am also Inter-Greek Senate Co-President. I have used my experience in these positions for numerous answers to interview questions,” Clark said. “Being in both groups has given me amazing leadership skills and social and networking opportunities.”
Clark is also part of the College’s Alumni Mentoring Program, which seeks to provide economics and management majors with relevant business information and experience through personal and professional mentoring relationships with successful Gustavus alumni.
“Being a part of this program has also been extremely helpful,” Clark said. “I received my mentor right before I started going through the interview process at Chrysler and it was extremely helpful. I can ask my mentor anything and she is always there for me.”
Clark points to two classes – Operations Management and Organization Behavior – that have been most beneficial to her during her time at Gustavus.
“In Kristian Braekkan’s Operations Management class I learned about forecasting, and that is helpful in my internship because I am dealing with sales projections. Kristian is also my advisor and has helped me so much by answering questions about interviews, internships and anything else I come to him with,” Clark said. “Kathi Tunheim’s Organization Behavior class is the best class I have taken. It has taught me so many different things from working in a group to public speaking and networking. Everything she teaches in this class has purpose and is helpful and useful in the business world.”
Like so many other Gustavus students, Clark has been able to take the knowledge she has learned in class and translate it to the real world at a highly competitive internship before earning her undergraduate degree. She knows that experience will be an asset for her when she starts to apply for a full-time job next spring.
“My internship has taught me that I really love spending my time researching and learning more about vehicles. If I could get into a position where I could continue doing that, it would be great,” Clark said. “I also learned that I really enjoy working in a corporate office. I enjoy the energy that comes from working in such a large place with so many people.”
Media Contact: Director of Media Relations and Internal Communication Matt Thomas