By Heather Blahnik (MA ’96, US ’98, AI ’99)
An AIESEC alumnus of AIESEC Miami of Ohio, Paul Hamill (’86) knows first-hand the benefits of an AIESEC traineeship, as he took two traineeships himself – one in Hong Kong and another in Sweden. His experiences, both in AIESEC and in his traineeships, stayed with him and for a long time, he had been looking for a way to get AIESEC back into UPS, where Paul works as a Marketing Manager. That opportunity came up almost two years ago when, while talking with a senior VP, the need to get a good international internship program started in the company was discussed. Paul knew then that it was time to bring AIESEC back in.
That senior VP became a champion for AIESEC and Paul soon also found supporters in HR. With that and a bit of time required to get things to move in a large corporation, Paul now has placed 3 AIESEC trainees in the Marketing Department – 2 from Mexico and 1 from China. These countries were selected based on the focus that UPS has in these markets, as the trainees will do an interview at the end of their 1 ½ year traineeship and if both parties are happy, the trainees will then get a job with UPS in their home countries.
Paul says that the trainees are doing an amazing job and that they have helped the department in ways that they hadn’t originally planned. For example, the Mexican trainees have been able to go on business trips to Mexico and do training for the team there as well as being involved with a new product launch. In fact, the trainees are doing so well that UPS has recently agreed to take 7 AIESEC trainees next year.
Paul also says that they have had a very good experience with the host LC, AIESEC Georgia Tech. “They have been very responsive and have done a good job of keeping up. AIESEC Georgia Tech presented us with 5 candidates for each of the 3 positions and we did an interview process on our own. The pre-screening that they did was great.”
When asked what it takes to get AIESEC trainees into a large corporation like UPS, Paul says, “You need to find a high level champion and you need to get HR on board. With those two things in place, the process becomes much easier internally. My greatest satisfaction comes from the fact that my company gets a great benefit from the service AIESEC provides, which has been true of AIESEC with multinational companies since 1948.”
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