A Look in the Rearview Mirror: Intern Reflection 2022

This summer, SpotHero crafted an immersive internship experience for young professionals to learn, develop, and grow in their time at the Chicago office. Eight interns and one extern shook things up this summer, creating space for unique projects, lots of fun, and opportunities to showcase their success.

The People Team made sure to develop a thorough, flexible work environment for our intern cohort to thrive. The summer kicked off with an in-person onboarding, which outlined the history, goals, and future vision for SpotHero. 

“We were able to work in a hybrid environment this summer, meaning that we could come into the office whenever we wanted to, or work remotely,” said Jackson Bremen, SpotHero’s DevTools Intern. “This flexibility was great and really helped reduce the stress of a morning commute. I came into the office 2-3 times per week normally, and was able to work synchronously with the rest of my team over Zoom as needed.”

Not only did interns work closely with their dedicated manager, but they were also assigned another full-time employee, or “buddy”, for the summer. The buddy system kept our internship program moving smoothly and provided another mentor and connection here at SpotHero. The intern team settled into their dedicated row of desks in the office to work alongside one another and share ideas and projects. Every Friday, the cohort would gather for an Intern Fueling Station, where employees from each department would take turns chatting about their current role, career path, and how they continue to #DriveGrowth here at SpotHero.

Jackson Bremen: DevTools Intern

“This summer, I worked as the DevTools Intern in the engineering department. I learned a ton about software development this summer, picked up and got to use some skills, and am proud of what I accomplished.

From the start, everyone on my team (and the company) was super welcoming and inviting. My manager, buddy, and team were always willing to answer questions and gave me work that helped guide me through the world of DevTools by slowly introducing new skills and practices that eventually came together to allow me to solve larger problems. While I had programming experience coming into the internship, the course of my work allowed me to learn about and work on projects using AWS, Docker, Terraform, Kubernetes, and more. I gained a ton of new skills and experience that I’ll be able to apply in the future.

  • I helped resolve our ‘tech debt’ by updating AWS Lambdas to modern Python versions and setting up Terraform/ Concourse pipelines to automatically deploy them. They’re operational and in use today!
  • I also set up scripting systems to monitor our infrastructure, to make sure that we know about everything that we’re using. 
  • I helped test out and provide feedback on some new internal security features
  • I got to take ownership of a project, and bring it through to completion!
  • Learned a lot about the importance of teamwork when problem-solving, and how it can help everyone save time”

Dawn De La Torre: Public Relations Intern

“This summer I was strapped in and ready to begin my PR internship at SpotHero. Thanks to the People team, we interns had a jam-packed summer ahead of us, with weekly Intern Fueling Stations, buddy chats, career panels, networking events and so much more. I was able to fuel and build relationships, learn new skills and tackle influential projects that will have a lasting impact.

Being a part of the Women ERG (Employee Resource Group), the First-Generation ERG, my intern cohort, as well as working alongside an incredible all-female team taught me to seize every opportunity, be unapologetically vocal, and spotlight my successes. I learned that women are often less likely to share their own accomplishments and that many people, like me, experience imposter syndrome. I was not alone, but rather surrounded by amazing go-getting people in leadership positions who influenced me in the best way possible. I was able to accomplish so much this summer, developing hard and soft skills that will continue to assist me in my career journey for years to come. I truly enjoyed the ride and the people who I met along the way.”

Arjo Bhattacharya: Product Design Intern

“SpotHero was one of the most educational and fun experiences I have had in my professional life and it is a disservice to the experience by summarizing my hero’s journey in one blog post. As the Product Design intern, I got the opportunity to utilize my skills such as User research, wireframing, and prototyping, as well as utilizing a variety of tools such as Figma, LuckyOrange, and EnjoyHQ. My favorite experience at SpotHero was working on the acquisition team for the driver side of the app where I got to make fast-paced contributions to the company by analyzing pain points with the original product and using my creativity to come up with solutions.

Working at this company I realized how much really goes into parking that we often overlook and how innovative a company SpotHero really is. I am grateful for my experience with the Drivers Acquisition team, as it has set me up with a valuable case study and I have made great lifelong networking connections that will help me for the rest of my career. SpotHero created an extremely flexible work environment that understood that I was human first and an employee second, while also acknowledging that life happens to all of us. Lastly, my intern cohort became like a second family to me and we all got so much closer together.”

Jacobi Thomas: People Operations Intern

“This summer was phenomenal! I had the opportunity to work as a People Operations Intern for SpotHero’s People Team. It was a wonderful experience and I’m glad I got to learn so much from so many great people. Here are some of the things I accomplished this summer:

  • I got the chance to lead the recruiting process which led to a wonderful internal candidate getting the Visual Designer role!
  • I created a career track for the People Team! Still has some refining to be done, but It is a great start from not having one at all!
  • Created and/or hosted some events for employees, including the Arts & Crafts Event for All Team Week

Of course, there were many other things I got the chance to be a part of, but more importantly, there were things I got to learn about myself, teamwork, and leadership:

  • Always be eager to learn. There’s no limit to the wisdom you can gain, so be open to improving however you can!
  • Be a great teammate by being the best individual you can be and a great listener. Teamwork works the best when every person gives their all to the goal and is willing to listen and understand their teammates.
  • Hold yourself accountable. Great leaders take accountability for their actions and always work towards helping themselves AND their teammates.

Overall, this was such a wonderful experience. Everything from the culture, to the learning opportunities, the faith that my team put in me, and my inspiring intern team was nothing short of greatness. I <3 SpotHero!”

Lauren Hughes: Revenue Operations Analyst Intern

“This summer, I worked as the Revenue Operations Analyst Intern for SpotHero. I am a part of the Revenue Operations team within the Supply Team. This was my first real job (in past summers I was a swim coach), and I learned so many invaluable skills to last a lifetime.

I learned plenty of new things about data analytics and tediousness within my projects. A lot of tasks I had involved cleansing and analyzing data– this took patience and mental energy! This also took a lot of proactivity and professionalism! I also learned much about work sociability and relationships within an office. 

This summer, I was proud to work on the TAM Chicago project– this is what my buddy and I mainly focused on. It took a lot of rounds of data cleansing and practice. By the end of the summer, we had completed the data analysis and results together. I also worked on the Scan2Pay sign design and QR build. This was a very fun project which I enjoyed doing with Renzo.

I learned the importance of communication when working with others on projects. I also learned that a good leader listens to their followers similar to how their followers ALWAYS listen to them. 

Working in a flexible workplace has been wonderful. This summer I had the opportunity to work at SpotHero and go on my family vacation that was planned pre-pandemic. I have never felt pressure to be one way in the workplace and that is something I really value.

I really loved working with my intern cohort; this has been the highlight of my summer. We grew really close as a bunch. Despite all being different, we really mesh well as a team– we’re The Breakfast Club! Our communication and hangouts outside of work have been so great. I have loved growing as a team and will really miss them once the summer is over.”

Lily Podracky: Social Media Intern

“This summer, I worked as the Social Media intern for SpotHero in the Marketing department. I learned a lot about myself this summer and am super proud of all the work I accomplished! 

  • I completed a Competitive Brand Audit comparing Social Media and PR efforts between SpotHero and our competitors.
  • I traveled to Boston for a Red Sox In-Field event to showcase our new partnership with the Boston Red Sox and Fenway Park.
  • I worked on creating a framework and outline for SpotHero’s upcoming Campus Ambassador Program.
  • I diligently completed day-to-day responsibilities and made myself available to any and all team members who needed something taken off their plate! 

Beyond being super proud of all my accomplishments, I also get to carry new things I learned with me! Here are my biggest takeaways:

  • Be confident in your ideas – step up and speak up when you have an idea or suggestion!
  • Be open to feedback or ideas for improvement – working together as a unit will create stronger campaigns and projects.
  • Be honest and thoughtful in discussions – respect goes a long way, and it’s a two-way street.
  • Build each other up – work as a team player, create a positive work environment, and celebrate each other’s wins.

More specifically, as the social media intern I gathered a great deal of information about SpotHero drivers and what aspects of our business appeal to them:

  • SpotHero drivers love sustainability and saving money! One of our campaigns was a gas giveaway of three $100 gas gift cards which was a hit on our social platforms. 
  • The Red Sox In-Field Event showed me the possibility to lean into the safety aspect of parking with SpotHero. The new idea I created is to target young teens (more specifically females) who are just receiving their driver’s licenses and whose parents will let them go to an event only if they book ahead with SpotHero to know they’re safe.”

Our internship program finished out with final presentations, where interns got to present to our executive board and the company what they learned while at SpotHero. From technical skills to developing relationships to advocating for yourself in the workplace, our interns each got to take away skills and memories to last a lifetime.

After presentations, the interns got to enjoy All Team Week, a time to reflect on their time at SpotHero and go have fun! From brunch to book clubs to scavenger hunts to go-karting, our interns got to end the summer on a high note.