Getting Ahead

How to Turn an Internship Into a Full-Time Job Offer, From a Recent Grad Who Did It

person wearing a flower-print dress standing in front of trees
Karynne Campbell, a client services manager at Bozzuto.
| Courtesy of Bozzuto

If you’re a college student or recent grad, take it from Karynne Campbell: internships can be the key to kick-starting your career. As a rising senior, she landed an internship with the real estate company Bozzuto—and the rest is history. Today, after multiple promotions, she works as a client services manager in Washington, D.C.

“I remember the job responsibilities of the internship listing so clearly because I remember feeling very confident in my ability to perform on each one of them,” she says. “The job called for something along the lines of a people-oriented, customer-facing, sales-driven team member with experience in event planning. Having had years of retail experience under my belt, a position like this was right up my alley.”

Campbell says she was drawn to Bozzuto’s beautiful management properties across the East Coast—but it’s the way she was treated as a candidate and intern that made her feel like the company was a place she could be long term. “I loved that the Talent & Culture team was so eager to learn more about me through an engaging video interview recruiting process,” she says. “Once I was hired, the team always reiterated that the goal of the internship program is to result in a full-time offer. What better news to hear as a soon-to-be college graduate?”

Here, Campbell shares the skills from her first year at Bozzuto that she still uses today, how the company encourages growth and development, and tips for interns looking to land a full-time role.

What has been your career trajectory since joining Bozzuto full time?

After completing my year as an intern in Boston, I joined Bozzuto as a full-time sales and marketing associate at 77H, a luxury apartment building in Washington, D.C. I spent a year there before applying to the business development associate position at the Greenbelt, Maryland, office. After serving two years in that role, I was promoted to client services manager in the summer of 2020.

What was the internship program like, and why did it make you want to pursue a full-time role afterwards?

I interned at The Kensington, an apartment building in Boston, where I had the most memorable internship I could have asked for. I learned a ton about the property management business, met unique residents coming to Downtown Boston from all walks of life, and always felt well supported by my award-winning property team. I had such an amazing time there and really felt that I had found my career niche. After expressing my interest in staying on board with the team, I was even able to extend my internship as a part-time role through the remainder of my senior year.

What skills did you learn during your internship that you still use today?

The best life and career skill that I can attribute to my internship with Bozzuto is learning how to talk to any and everyone. I remember having some prospective residents come in who were completely uninterested in my bubbly personality or my perfectly rehearsed apartment tour speech, and for those people I had to learn to adjust and adapt to their needs in order to maintain their interest. Then there were times where I’d have an entire family joining the apartment hunt with the prospective renter and mom, dad, and grandma all had questions of their own so it was important to learn how to field the many personalities in order to prioritize and find the right fit for the resident. Today, my role is much more client-facing as opposed to our resident customers, but the same rules apply. Knowing how to adapt and adjust per the audience’s interests is key to achieving the desired outcome.

What are you responsible for in your role?

My job is to manage the production of client-facing deliverables for Bozzuto Management Company. My team brings in new business deals for the company in the form of management contracts for residential properties. When a client asks for information about the company in the form of a proposal or a formal pitch, it is my job to come up with compelling tools that help our team put the best foot forward for Bozzuto and the company’s service offering.

What are you currently working on that excites or inspires you?

We are in the process of completely refreshing our entire process and our materials. After having worked with a pretty consistent flow for several years now, I’m looking forward to assessing fresh new areas of opportunity and efficiency.

You’ve been promoted a few times since joining Bozzuto full time. How does the company help and encourage employees to grow in their careers?

Since joining Bozzuto I have had several different managers, all having personally expressed an interest in helping me succeed. Whether the role already exists, or you find an area of opportunity for the company that has yet to be formally realized, Bozzuto is notorious for helping its employees find their perfect niche. Even now, my manager is constantly inquiring about my goals and my opinions. As a fairly new employee, this level of concern and expectation of growth works wonders for my confidence and encourages me to maintain my future-thinking outlook.

What do you like best about the company culture and its core values?

As a Black woman establishing my career, it really resonates with me that Bozzuto places an emphasis on creating an inclusive workplace. The company’s commitment to not only its customers and clients, but also its employees is always evident, making it a wonderful place to work.

What advice do you have for interns that will help them have the most rewarding experience possible?

My advice to incoming interns is to try to learn as much as possible as quickly as possible. Dive right in and get into the nitty gritty details of how your position and its processes work. By showing your interest and engagement, you not only prove you are a strong performer, but you also set yourself up for future opportunities since your coworkers will always remember you for your hard work and passion.

Updated 2/17/2021