Young Gun Spotlight: Lillian Gabreski
By: Guest Author
As a fellow at the Cornell Institute for Public Affairs, I needed to take a summer internship as part of my Master’s of Public Administration degree program. I thought it was the perfect excuse to spend the summer in Cape Town, a city I fell in love with during a study abroad at the University of Cape Town two years ago while I was a political science major at Penn State.
My program didn’t have any current contacts in Cape Town, so I set forth to find the right place on my own. When I found Eventerprise, I thought it might be too good to be true. The structure of the program, the prompt response I got to all of my queries, and the kindness (#kind&assertive) and strong work ethic I saw in the office were all more than I was asking for when I was looking for a place to spend my summer. I can now only say that my impression of the company has grown tenfold.
Over time, I’ve found the only way I can piece together my array of interests and experiences is under the policy umbrella. At Cornell, I specialize in community and international development, and I’ve specifically become interested in the way private businesses and enterprises impact and empower localized economic development. Even as a global digital platform, Eventerprise provides a huge service for local event suppliers, by giving them leverage via maximizing their exposure and digital presence. It also does a great service to people attempting to put together or plan events, by allowing them to transparently review event suppliers and thereby instill accountability into the events industry.
Coming into my internship as a Content PostGrad, I was prepared to put my interests on the backburner in order to work on content and business strategy the company needed most urgently. However, I quickly learned this was not to be. I was not just able to write content that related to my interests regarding socially responsible business and women in tech and VC, but was also granted full reign of creating and executing a corporate social responsibility project (South Africa’s Got Digital Talent), which I built from the ground-up with our CEO, Gotz, and with major help from many other members of the team. I can say with confidence that I could not have found a better place to actually learn and grow than Eventerprise, in that at a legacy company I would have never been given the opportunity to actually meaningfully contribute to a large-scale program such as this, let alone lead it to execution.
I’ve gained experience in tech, startup culture, investor relations, HR, AI, digital software, and lots in content marketing – concepts I knew nothing to little about before starting my internship. I’ve also developed confidence in my ability to manage and execute a project with numerous stakeholders, whether they be internal or external. I’ve been able to sit in on meetings with people from across the industry and learn about building strong partnerships and meaningful business connections. In constructing our corporate social responsibility project, I held meetings with and spoke to people from both the private and public sectors, and was able to leverage multiple concerns and create a functional proposal for action. I’ve learned so much about so many different aspects of business operation and strategy as well as working across sectors to accomplish results. With people from all over the world working at the Cape Town hub of Eventerprise, I’ve also learned quite a bit about how to interact and work together in a truly global environment.
Most importantly – the team at Eventerprise are some of the most genuine people I’ve ever met. Eventerprise has inspired me based on their fair and admirable business ethics and their constant drive to motivate each other to do their best work. I never dreamt that I could find a place where my idea of the potential net positive impact of private sector firms could be realized, but I definitely have seen that and more in the short time I’ve been working as a PostGrad here. The educational opportunity at Eventerprise is truly unparalleled to anything I’ve ever experienced, and I feel it’s one that any student should have when preparing to pursue their chosen career, whatever that may be.
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