After dozens of applications, emails and interviews this past spring, when I got a call from Toll Brothers one chilly, late April afternoon offering me a position as a social media intern for the summer, I was more than excited, I was on cloud nine. Despite my mom’s constant reassurance, I was starting to think that getting the dream internship was not going to play out. But once again, as always, she was right (yes mom, I’ll admit it).With junior year under my belt and a week at home in North Carolina spent trying to add some “business casual” to my wardrobe, by mid May it was time to start working. And then, the corporate world hit me like a ton of bricks. Not only did I manage to rack up nearly $100 in toll booth fines (you don’t even want to know how), accidently rip my fire alarm out of the ceiling and dump my lunch inside my new bag all in the first day, but I also was notified that my second day was going to be filled with the marketing department having an afternoon in the park.
Group activities?! When I don’t know anyone?! Toll booth fines?? Holes in the ceiling?? Since when did I become an adult?!
As the weeks passed by in a way that makes you wish there was some kind of slow motion button to press, I found a back roads way to get to work, cleaned the soy sauce out of the bottom of my bag and believe it or not, made it through the afternoon in the park (maybe I was being a little dramatic?). As for the fire alarm, well, there’s still a hole in the ceiling – gives it character. I also started realizing that this was not your average internship, or your average company for that matter. I wasn’t just sitting in a cubicle filing papers and bopping around online every day. I was writing blog posts, creating a Pinterest page and strategy, running Facebook promotions and talking to Toll Brothers marketing reps from all across the country. My managers have probably helped me learn more in the past three months than I have in the past three years. They taught me how I learn best, through experience. They pulled me into conference calls and meetings, encouraged me to speak up and listened when I did, and let me assume responsibility, all while never making me feel like the young little intern.
The people that I watched in the park my second day have become people that I truly admire. They work hard. They care about their company and each other and that’s what makes them successful. I’ve made friends that I hope to keep for a long time and have had experiences that have made me more than ready to dive head first into my life after graduation.
I’ve always believed that you can find the feeling of ‘home’ anywhere. It just takes the perfect balance of people, energy and the right experiences. Suddenly, and a bit unexpectedly, Toll Brothers has become another one of my homes. My social media platforms are like my babies; ones that I very well might be having separation anxiety from in a few short days. Who knew that could happen?
My experience at Toll Brothers this summer has been an unbelievable opportunity and I think that says a lot about the company as a whole, especially the Marketing department. So do me a favor, go ‘Like’ Toll’s Facebook page, follow us on Twitter and Pinterest, and read our blog every week. Keep your eye on my babies because I can say with 100% confidence that this is an astounding company that’s going places, and you’re going to want to be kept in the loop.
p.s. That is a photo of me with our CEO, Doug Yearley!