Ciocca Center Student Internship Experience

My name is Nalani Ramos Ruiz ’21, double majoring in Sociology and Psychology with a concentration in Latin American, Latinx, and Caribbean Studies. 2019 marks my sixth year with Raytheon Company and my second summer as a college intern. In addition to creating valuable connections, my education at Notre Dame Cristo Rey High School and years at the College of the Holy Cross, involvement with the Ciocca Center Business Certificate Program, and experience on the Women in Business Planning Committee have all helped me to succeed in a company focused on the defense industry and the protection of our war fighters.

The Ciocca Center for Business, Ethics, and Society at Holy Cross has helped shape the way I view the world. The Ciocca Center challenges students to major in their interests and gives students the tools to succeed in business. While most interns at Raytheon have majored in business or international relations at a variety of schools, the Holy Cross liberal arts education allows students to take courses in all disciplines without declaring a major. 

The Holy Cross education is so valuable because it produces knowledgeable, well-rounded individuals  that can become professionals in their desired field. Students are encouraged to think outside the box to reach solutions, to connect ideas that have not been previously correlated, and to express themselves as professionals. The knowledge students absorb through the liberal arts education is polished through Business Certificate Programs. The Ciocca Center allows students to take what they know and transform that knowledge into attributes employers desire.

As a contracts intern at Raytheon, most of my day-to-day tasks consist of replying to emails, attending meetings and contributing to special projects. However, it is not until taking a tour of Raytheon’s manufacturing facility when the full picture of what you do all comes together. The Raytheon Company Vision focuses on “creating trusted, innovative solutions to make the world a safer place.”  I feel very proud of the work I do because Raytheon gives our military the best tools to do their job. My father is military, Army, and to know that there is a possibility that something created by Raytheon was used by him to fulfill his duty and stay safe is simply amazing. 

My favorite part about working as a summer intern is meeting other interns and working together. I’m always surprised to see how ideas develop, and how different some students problem solve in comparison to my own methods.  What I am most proud of, and where I had the most exposure to different sides of Raytheon businesses, was working on a contract still under negotiation. I was able to participate on calls with the customer, work with the lawyers from the Office of General Counsel, and draft clauses that were included in the final contract. I have only been in this new role a few weeks, however I have had the opportunity to attend meetings regarding everyday issues the lawyers deal with, and I am getting a better understanding of legal matters. My experience in the Office of the General Counsel has confirmed that corporate law is a discipline I would like to pursue.

The Holy Cross alumni network is a great resource for making new connections and identifying exciting opportunities. The summer before last, I met the Vice President of IDS Contracts,Steve Murphy ‘91, current Vice President of the IDS Global Supply Chain Management. When I met him and mentioned I was a Crusader as well, he said “Oh yes I know.” I had already made a good impression simply by affiliation. This year, I met Emily Hall ‘17, a graduate intern for the Office of General Counsel. The Holy Cross network is full of alumni willing to share their experiences and help guide you through your own journey.

Startup Spotlight: Matt Gasparrini ’20

I have always had new ideas. Along with those ideas comes with the excitement of trying something new, of creating something novel. Most of my ideas (even my best ideas) … are garbage. They wouldn’t make it in the real world. They wouldn’t succeed outside of my own head. Because at the end of the day, nobody has room in their kitchen for an English muffin separator or fireplace tools with a built-in vacuum. My latest idea was the least glamorous of them all. A dog food company. The dog food idea was inspired by my own dog Gracie. Gracie had boring kibble every single day, she was also sick a lot of the time too. I fed her kibble because it’s what everyone feeds their dogs and because it was cheap. It turns out that kibble was making Gracie sick. I had heard about homemade dog food and gave it a try. On the homemade diet, Gracie had more energy, a shinier coat, and was overall healthier. I looked for similar fresh dog food on the market and found only very expensive products that used expensive ingredients. I knew that feeding a fresh, homemade dog food was simply better for the overall health of the dog. I decided to create a dog food with simple, inexpensive ingredients.   Continue reading “Startup Spotlight: Matt Gasparrini ’20”