I am pleased to share the story of young three interns as they navigate the Oneida Nation’s Internship Program and share their experiences. The interns attend different colleges and have varying majors, but this summer they worked together on a common goal, getting more followers for the Oneida Nation’s official social channels. The internship program connects students the Oneida Nation and its multiple departments, programs, and enterprises. They learn more about the Nation and its processes, get relevant work experience, and ultimately decide the course of their future. Mason Thomas shares his thoughts on the experience he’s gained in his two internships with the Nation.
Mason Thomas a junior at UW-Green Bay, is majoring in business with an emphasis on management. He learned about the program from the Intercultural Advisor at his school. Working with fellow interns, Lexy and Tyler, on a campaign to generate more followers for the Oneida Nation’s social channels, he had several assignments. “I found these assignments helpful”, he said of the #subscribe4yourtribe campaign, “I learned a lot about what needs to be done when advertising your brand.” He found value in learning how to maneuver through some of the Nation’s processes. Not a stranger to Oneida, he was an intern at the Division of Land Management, where the Oneida Human Resources Department (HRD) placed him last summer.
The Oneida Nation’s HRD houses the internship program. The purpose of the program is to recruit and place college students within a department that will provide them with the opportunity to gain meaningful and helpful work experience related to their degree. “We hope will enhance their resume for future employment opportunities within the Oneida Nation” said HRD Specialist, Jennifer Garcia. Lexy Bursiek intends to use her professional experience with Oneida in her school work and future positions.
Alexandria “Lexy” Bursiek is a junior at Marquette University where she studies journalism. In addition
to the #subscribe4yourtribe campaign, she worked on a short YouTube video series about Oneida’s enterprises. She had the opportunity to meet in a professional setting with Oneida’s business leaders from Gaming, Radisson, Bay Bank, and Thornberry. “I intend to use the knowledge I’ve gained to improve my school work and carry the stronger lessons on to future jobs”. Lexy grew up in Kimberly, Wisconsin and was eager to participate in the Oneida Nation Internship Program. When a little postcard showed up in the mail, she thought, “how perfect an opportunity”. She began by filling out an application and that began the process!
Students who are recruited are encouraged to apply to the program they are interested in, based on their area of study. They must submit their unofficial transcripts and Background Information Disclosure (BID) Form. If the student is a high school senior they need their acceptance letter for fall semester and BID form. All the information is gathered and reviewed by a committee consisting of at least three HRD representatives. Once interns are chosen they must complete a pre-employment urinalysis and paperwork for the position. The program helps students determine, or at times, confirm what career path is a good fit for them. Tyler Fabricius shares his story about how the Oneida internship program helped confirm that he is on the best career path.
Tyler Fabricius is a senior at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia. His major is marketing, and his experience with the Nation helped push him towards his career choice. He did
dataentry and article writing for the Legislative Review Office (LRO), who works for the Legislative Operating Committee (LOC). Both tasks involve preliminary work, like researching Oneida’s laws and policies. However, he confirmed his passion for marketing was confirmed by the work he did on the #subscribe4yourtribe campaign. Tyler put some of his training in strategic marketing to use through his role on the campaign employing concept like, Guerrilla Marketing in these campaign ads.
Guerrilla Marketing is an advertising strategy that focuses on low-cost unconventional marketing tactics that yield maximum results. (source: creativeguerrillamarketing.com). Tyler’s success on the campaign was measured in getting 253 new Instagram followers in a short time.
The social media campaign called, #subscribe4yourtribe aimed at getting more followers on the Oneida Nation’s social channels; Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter. This project consisted of strategic planning, budgeting, creating print ads, ordering promotional items, and outreach events like the Oneida powwow and the Farmer’s Market. They also learned the importance of collaboration, reaching out to the various entities that would help them achieve there goals.