Launching one’s career at any time is challenging. But for SJC Brooklyn student-athlete Matthews Avendano, getting the professional experience that he coveted meant taking the plunge into remote work in an economy reeling from the impact of a global pandemic.
A marketing major and business administration minor, he quickly shook off his initial disappointment about having to do his first internship virtually. Avendano of East Elmhurst was quickly immersed in work at Manhattan Ridge Advisors, a wealth management firm located in midtown Manhattan, where he tracked client portfolios, recording financial data and creating presentations for clients.
“During this internship, I didn’t have anyone looking over my shoulder — the responsibility was on me to get my work done,” said Avendano, a midfielder on SJC Brooklyn’s men’s soccer team. “To be successful, I had to think strategically, be very organized and manage my time well to accomplish the tasks I was assigned.”
Philip Dehne, Ph.D., executive dean and professor of history at SJC Brooklyn noted the invaluable role internships serve in preparing students for personal and professional success.
“Our career services department and faculty are working to ensure that SJC Brooklyn students are prepared to thrive in a post-COVID future,” he said.
Following his experience at Manhattan Ridge, Avendano secured a second internship. This one was with Leviathan Leasing, a start-up real estate leasing firm looking to increase its exposure in the New York City real estate landscape.
“Not many people are looking for new apartments — it’s very hard when there’s not much to do, due to the impact of COVID-19,” he said. “I always have to be ready to succeed and make the most of whatever opportunity comes up, be it in my internship or for that first job when I graduate in December.”