MBA student and AbbVie intern Michael Mascitti’s advice: Start networking early

Q&A with Michael Mascitti
MBA Candidate '15
Sales Operations Intern, AbbVie

Q. What led to your AbbVie Careers summer internship?
My internship with AbbVie was sparked at the Midwest MBA Career Fair in Chicago. I made a very strong impression on a current director, which led to an on-site interview the following month. I was notified of an offer immediately after the interview presentation. It didn’t take me long to realize what a wonderful opportunity I’d been given.

Q. Which internship program are you doing at AbbVie? What are your responsibilities?
I’m working in the Commercial Analytics & Operations (CA&O) division under Sales Operations. My objective this summer was to make a recommendation on streamlining multiple sales force data tools. The key to my project was truly understanding our field’s use and challenges with the existing platforms.

Q. Tell us about the best part of your internship.
The most rewarding aspects of my internship have been connecting with people, the challenging tasks, and work-life balance. Also, I was granted the freedom to explore and solve my objective as I thought best.

Q. What advice would you give MBA students about the internship process?
My best advice is to start early. Networking begins the minute you arrive on campus. Don’t get me wrong—first-semester classes are crucial, but so are career fairs, workshops, and employer informational sessions. Each professional you meet has a potential for opportunity.

Q. What’s something you learned during your first year as an Illinois MBA student?
During my first year I’ve learned the importance of opportunity costs. Specifically, balancing the trade-off between school curriculum and professional networking/development.