Promising entrepreneur student gets internship at City College

FLORENCE VAN DEN BERG, Channels Staff

A young, new entrepreneurial face was welcomed as coordinator for the Scheinfeld Center’s Internship Program this semester at City College.

Julie Samson, the director of the Scheinfeld Center, saw much potential in 18-year-old Kate Stratman to lead the position, as she stood out in her hands-on business course.

“She was a student in my Enterprise Launch class. She showed tremendous leadership abilities so I was sure she would be a perfect fit,” Samson said.

Samson added that the former coordinator left to pursue other professional and academic opportunities.

“The reason I hired Kate is because she has the capability and vision to take a program that was already good and make it even better. She is very entrepreneurial herself,” Samson said. “And we are so happy to have her on board.”

Stratman was a student at Westmont College for a year, playing tennis and studying kinesiology. She wasn’t interested in what she was studying and didn’t want to stay there to finish her general education. So she came to City College to broaden her opportunities.

Stratman said the Enterprise Launch class sparked her interest in becoming a business major.

“When I got in here I pretty much changed it up,” Stratman said. “The way it was before was totally fine but I have an entrepreneurial mind so I wanted to make it my own. I rearranged the entire program from paper to electronic based.”

She collaborated with Samson in creating a seven-step process for students in the program: complete a student intake survey, identify company of interest, mock interview with the coordinator, follow-up interview, interview with internship sponsor, placement, follow-up surveys and final assessment.

This way the students can easily understand how the program works, Stratman said.

Stratman works on adding more sponsors and really putting emphasis on the entrepreneurial and business aspect. She also gives a pitch-deck during business classes to briefly present the program and the credible opportunities it provides.

“It has been two months now. We added the surveys for students and sponsors; there were no surveys before. The seven-step process is new. Just everything is new,” Stratman said. “There was no intake before. We had to create a whole entire new database.”

The internship program focuses on students gaining 21st century business skills needed for the modern business world. The program does not want students to become a pair of busy hands but it is looking for internships that truly transform students’ lives professionally.

“Kate is very nice and helpful. She eases you for any stress you may have since you’re applying for internships,” said student Tiffany Huang, who applied for the program. “She really helped me out in such a scary application process.”

Stratman wants to work for a company straight out of college or create her own business after completing her education. She is looking to transfer to UCLA or UC Berkeley.

“I ended up here, which I am so happy about because it is the best opportunity ever. It is challenging but so much fun. I love being part of the change. I mean I can change people’s lives. We help them out with their cover letter and resume and match them up with the sponsor. The part that it is free for students is just amazing.”

Stratman was tabling at the Job & Internship Fair last week and the next event she will be tabling is at the Santa Barbara Business Expo on April 25.

Students can visit the Scheinfeld Center’s Internship Program website to find more information about the program.