The Ohio State University at Marion

Someone will find direction through internship opportunities

Like many young people, Marion native and Ohio State Marion student Jasmine Gaffney graduated high school faced with tough decisions about her future. She experienced the common uncertainty of where to go to school, what to major in, and her chosen career path after college.

She applied to and chose to attend Ohio State Marion, which at the time she saw as a back-up option. Fast-forward to 2018, the senior business management and administration major, now sees Ohio State Marion as one of her best decisions. Why? The connections she made through Ohio State to the community and subsequent paid internships with Ohio Health and Modern Woodmen of America have led to a decisive pathway for her future career.

Gaffney now sees value in many of the courses she has taken over her college career. She takes pride in the academic rigor the campus offers, and the knowledge that her degree will be respected world-wide. More than that, she shared, the connections made on campus are now paying lifelong dividends.

“I realized (Ohio State) Marion is nothing like I thought it was,” she said. “I made all these (professional) connections and I made so many friends the first semester that were genuinely good people that I had never met before. It is so much more affordable,” Gaffney added.

It’s those connections, and her growth at Ohio State Marion that have allowed her the opportunity to work two long-term paid internships, which she deemed crucial to her future career prospects. Gaffney explained, when you make connections in the community, you are more marketable from an experience standpoint, and it helps you find your direction.

“For a business degree it looks really good to have an internship. It just makes you look really credible on your resume,” said Gaffney.

Because of her grandfather’s strong community ties, service, and influence, Gaffney developed that same sense of giving back.

“Knowing people and getting involved in the Marion community and inside of Ohio State Marion is the biggest thing,” Gaffney advised young students entering college.

“If you don’t get internships, I honestly feel like it doesn’t prepare you. College classes prepare you to a certain point from the knowledge base, but to get the experience and the hands on, to know how to interact with people, or talk with people,” she explained, students need to seek out internships.

“Even simple things like handshakes,” Gaffney maintained, are part of the internship experience. “You can be taught handshakes and how you are supposed to do them, but if you don’t practice them, you are not going to know and you are going to have a little weak handshake,” she said. “If you don’t have an internship or a job, it doesn’t prepare you as well.”

Her first internship was with Modern Woodmen of America in the financial sector. Her current internship, which began August 2018 and ends January 2020, is in the area of communications with Ohio Health. Gaffney felt taking part in multiple internships helped her get separate, but unique, career perspectives of business from the different fields. Gaffney now sees herself making the most of her skills, while helping others.

Gaffney explained that her focus at Ohio Health is on both internal and external communications. During her first semester on the job she has focused primarily on internal communications, doing e-boards, newsletters, news releases, flyers, and memos.

She shared that she communicates frequently with OhioHealth network facilities across the state, from Riverside and Grant Hospitals in Columbus to Grady Memorial Hospital in Delaware, Morrow County Hospital, Ohio Health corporate offices, and of course Marion General Hospital and all Ohio Health facilities in Marion County.

Gaffney is on track to graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration through Ohio State’s prestigious Fisher College of Business autumn semester 2019.

“It’s so credible. It’s looks amazing,” said Gaffney of her degree. All of her classes and the practical experience she gained were made possible because of her decision to attend the Marion campus.

Gaffney now has a long term direction for her career thanks to her internship opportunities made available through Ohio State Marion.

“Right now I would love to be a manager or director at Ohio Health in the area of communications and media relations. I really, really like it,” she said. “I love everything they do. I like the community aspect of everything.”

“They are a very value, focused organization,” Gaffney added. “That’s why I really want to work for them.”

With such a broad base of experience and graduation around the corner, Gaffney sees her degree, experience, and personal growth as tickets to a future her grandfather can take pride in.