Baude Arvizu de Ramirez interned with UnitedHealth Group/Optum to process health requests for members and insurance providers.
How did you get your internship and why did you choose it?
At the advice of the PAH 383 Pre-Internship: Building Career Readiness class, I sought out a couple of online job fairs. I was very skeptical about how a job fair would work online, since in my experience job fairs are usually done in person. Needless to say, it was an amazing live presentation. The employers were full of energy. I met with a recruiter from UnitedHealth Group/Optum and applied to an open full-time position.
The assignments in the PAH 383 Pre-Internship course really helped me outline a path to applying. I learned how to translate my transferable skills and upgrade my resume. I also learned how to properly interview remotely. It was a super-charged recipe for success! Once I started my remote position, I found out some of my peers had been trying to get a position at this company for a couple years when it only took me three months! I could not have done this without the strategies I learned from the Applied Humanities Internship Team, Stephanie Springer and Brittney Crawford.
My internship was perfect for me - it was remote and worked well with my schedule. At the time I was working full-time and attending classes full-time. Working remotely allowed me the flexibility to juggle both.
What kind of work did you do throughout your experience?
I process complex health need requests for facilities and members on behalf of one of the top five insurance companies in the US. Some of the calls are from providers and many were from members. I learned how to multi-task remotely and provide top rated customer service while collaborating in a team.
What was your favorite part of your internship?
My favorite part of this internship was building relationships remotely. I’ve always been able to relate to people in person, but I really welcomed the challenge of doing this remotely. I wondered if I would be able to succeed. Not only was I able to challenge myself, but also successfully build relationships remotely. My supervisor reviewed my performance and recordings. She mentioned how nice it was to hear my courteous yet effective call style and noticed repeat callers recognize my name and voice. It was a wonderful life-long learning experience that I will take with me as I continue to climb in my career.
How has your internship experience influenced your plans for your future?
I’ve decided to continue my experience with UnitedHealth Group/Optum as I’ve been offered a position that has added duties and pay. Remote work is not for everyone, but I’ve been successful with it because I can still do the work that I once did in person. The company works closely in teams and collaborates daily. It’s my hope that I can continue to work remotely and gain the metrics needed to grow within the company while increasing my skill set.
What advice do you have for other students as they search for and begin their internship?
Be open to it! Don’t be afraid to take the opportunities that make you stand out from others. Remote internships are just as important as in person opportunities. You can still build relationships with people remotely.