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Students are career ready after summer internships

WSSU student Brooke Bennett receives valuable insight of the legal profession during her summer internship with the Restorative Justice Clinic at Campbell University Law School.

Winston-Salem State University (WSSU) students are returning to campus with new insights into careers after summer internships.

This summer, WSSU students interned with more than 20 different companies and agencies, including Fortune 500 companies throughout North Carolina.

Brooke Bennett, a junior English major, political science minor from Raleigh, and an aspiring lawyer, gained insight into the law profession during her summer internship with the Restorative Justice Clinic, part of the Campbell University Law School in downtown Raleigh.

“I’ve always wanted an opportunity to job shadow an attorney,” Bennett says. “One of my mentors, Zebedee Talley in career services at WSSU, had connections with an alumna who attends Campbell School of Law. She connected me with Jon Powell, the director of the Restorative Justice Clinic and my internship supervisor.”

Bennett says this experience gave her valuable insight into law school and the legal profession.

“This internship has definitely shaped my view of the legal field,” she says. "I have realized that I want to be a nontraditional lawyer, like my internship supervisor. I want to help others through restorative justice and watch the world grow into a better place one client at a time.”

Bennett, a first-generation college student, says that WSSU is helped her accomplish her personal goals.

“WSSU has helped me achieve the goal of discovering myself,” she says. “I personally believe that college was the outlet I needed to find myself and grow into this person that I want to be.”

Her advice to the class of 2022: “Breathe and be willing to try new things, join clubs, and meet administrators.”

“WSSU has so many resources that will help you figure out what your next step is in life,” Bennett says. “I have so many mentors at WSSU, I cannot name just one.”

As part of WSSU’s Strategic Plan, the university has focused on expanding internships and other co-curricular activities to help students hone essential skills.

“Our Career Development Services staff is committed to helping our students understand their experiences, and how to prepare for the role of work, or for graduate and professional school beyond WSSU,” said LaMonica Sloan Wilhelmi, interim associate dean of Campus Life and director of Career Development Services at WSSU. “By connecting with internal and external stakeholders, we have a clear understanding of what is expected of our students. Therefore, we are very intentional about attaching learning outcomes to our students’ experiences.”

Students from WSSU participated in summer internship programs with the AT&T Academy, the SECU Public Fellows Internship Program, Reynolds American, BB&T Emerging Leaders Certification Program, the North Carolina Governor’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Internship Program, the Freedom School Partners, and Nationwide Insurance in Columbus, Ohio, just to name a few.

Career Development Services offers a full range of resources and services to assist you in developing the necessary strategies and skills which will distinguish you as a professional. For more information, please visit the career services page.

About Winston-Salem State University
Winston-Salem State University fosters the creative thinking, analytical problem-solving, and depth of character needed to transform the world. Rooted in liberal education, WSSU’s curriculum prepares students to be thought leaders who have the skills and knowledge needed to develop innovative solutions to complex problems. Founded in 1892, WSSU is a historically Black constituent institution of the University of North Carolina with a rich tradition of contributing to the social, cultural, intellectual, and economic growth of North Carolina, the region and beyond. Guided by the motto, “Enter to Learn, Depart to Serve,” WSSU develops leaders who advance social justice by serving the world with compassion and commitment.

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