Student lands job from internship

Living/Athens Editor

In search of a job that would allow her to leave behind a managing position at Dollar General, senior business major Rebecca Kirven applied for an internship with Bridgestone Tire Company that led her to a job offer.

Kirven said she was originally called back for a video interview regarding the position and then discovered she was one of 235 people to be chosen for the internship. The program paid interns $15 an hour and provided them with transportation and amenities for a trip to Chicago during the ten-week program.

The trip to Chicago was for a number of training sessions, according to Kirven. There, the interns attended classes about different sales approaches, but they were also able to participate in fun activities while there such as attending a game at Wrigley Field, hand-packing food for underprivileged children and going to Top Golf.

“During our time in Chicago, there were very important people within the business who we got to meet and talk with,” Kirven said. “The president of the company and an NFL player were there.”

After the week spent in Chicago, Kirven began working at a Tires Plus in Loganville. She said this was so she would have the chance to apply what she had learned in the training sessions in a real working environment.

Bridgestone assigned her and other interns to put together a sales event for the stores that they were working in, so the company could decide which interns they wanted to keep. Based upon the results of these presentations, 100 interns were chosen to go to Nashville, Tennessee, and Kirven was one of them.

While in Nashville, the interns were all given gifts, which included a baseball cap, a speaker and a job offer. The offer was to begin May 30, 2016. Kirven accepted this offer and plans to begin after graduation in April.

She said once she begins her new career, she will shadow managers in stores owned by Bridgestone, in order to become a manager, which will happen in about three years.

“I never thought I would want to work [for] a car company,” Kirven said. “But, this company pays you for doing well and supports you. Plus, the benefits are unreal.”

Despite her success in the business field, Kirven was originally pursuing nursing. She attended Athens Tech before transferring to Piedmont. With the help of one of her mentors, she said she realized that Piedmont would be a better fit for her, so she made the change.

“I never thought that I could afford private schools, but then I was blessed and got a full scholarship from a private party,” she said. “I wanted to go to the best place possible that would be worth my money.”

Kirven will begin her new career after graduation, but she plans to continue her education by  pursuing a Master’s in Business Administration from Piedmont.

“I’m crazy excited to start my new job because they’re paying for half of my master’s degree,” She said. “The company wants college-educated people to carry out their new mission.”

She said she believes that although she may not want to work at a car company her entire life, working for Bridgestone will open up endless opportunities for her future.

“I will have all this experience and recommendations to take into the world with me from having this job and doing the internship,” said Kirven. “I have learned so much and can talk about sales to people in a way that I couldn’t before, and that’s very empowering as a woman.”

She encourages more students to apply for jobs and internships with this community. The professors in the business school looked over her resume to prepare her for applying to this internship and was able to get class credit for it as well.

“This is a fabulous internship,” she said. “Tirestone and Firestone are everywhere, and we need college students to sign up for this. It’s a great opportunity, even if you don’t want to work in the car industry forever.”