Rising junior and Pforzheimer resident, Becca Gilmore, is completing a summer term at Harvard Student Agencies, the largest student-run agency in the world. HSA is a non-profit with 13 agencies across various industries that provides educational and business opportunities to students.
Can you give a brief synopsis of what you're doing?
This summer I've been working for Harvard Student Agencies as the Operations Manager for Cleaners and Dorm Essentials. I am responsible for marketing, logistics, operations, and business development for our dry-cleaning storefront and dorm essentials online store. I help manage 1.4 million dollars in revenue. HSA is a student run business and, as such, recruits from Harvard's student population. I learned about this position on a bus ride back from a hockey game when they sent out their notice that there were 24 hours left to apply.
Does the job relate to your concentration? If so, how? If not, why did you choose to pursue it?
Yes, as an economics major this job gives me practical business experience outside of my coursework. However, this job is unique in the way it provides a glimpse of all areas of business functions. It is extremely hands on.
Where is the job physically located?
Mount Auburn Street, at the heart of Harvard's campus.
What's a typical day for you?
There is no typical day at HSA. Some days I'm in marketing and payroll meetings all day, and others I'm developing sales strategy and customer experience improvements.
Any tasks or projects you've really enjoyed?
Cleaners and Dorm Essentials is pursuing a new partnership that will bring a unique product to campus. I was able to assist our internal marketing team and enjoy the startup like environment that comes with an entirely new service.
What's the most challenging part of the job?
The job is very time intensive and unlike most internships and jobs in the summer, I'm making decisions that directly affect the performance of a real business, and therefore bear a great deal of responsibility for each decision I make.
Could you see yourself doing something like this post-grad?
Well, I don't see myself pursing a dry-cleaning storefront, but this opportunity has opened my eyes to my interests in both marketing and financial services. Working in a fast-paced environment for an innovative company has definitely provided me with the skills to pursue these careers.