On May 28th at 6:30 a.m., I woke up nervous and excited for the first day of my summer-long internship at GEODIS. I was surprised I had got the job, but I must have underestimated myself because I secured a position in the internship program the summer after my freshman year of college. Having just turned 18 a few weeks prior to the program’s beginning, I definitely felt out of place when I met all of the other interns on the first day. Most of them were juniors or seniors in college and seemed to have much more experience in the logistics field than me. I began to really doubt myself. After my first day, I had to be reminded that GEODIS hired me for a reason, and if I worked hard, I would be a good employee for the company.
In some ways, I have found that my age does matter and in other aspects of my job I have found it is just a number. My young age can even be an asset to the company; I have more knowledge of modern technology than some people in the office and am able to complete digital tasks quicker than those who didn’t grow up in the digital age. On the other hand, I have found that regardless of age everyone should be working to expand their skillsets. It hadn’t even crossed my mind that I might work in with different departments like human resources or marketing, but when the opportunities arose, I agreed. My experiences in these departments have helped me become more well-rounded and improved my overall understanding of how different departments all work together to reach an end goal.
Being the youngest in the office has also been very interesting socially. I had not expected to become friends with many of my coworkers, but I found out we have more things in common than not. Despite only being with the company for a short amount of time, the other employees still treat me as an equal and we are able to have enlightening and interesting conversations despite our age differences. I had anticipated the social aspect of my summer internship being more intimidating, but I have luckily found the opposite to be true.
Being the baby in the office was initially a large stressor for me. A little over halfway through the internship, however, I have found that if you work hard and strive towards making a real impact on the company, those around you will disregard your age and respect you as a valued employee and friend. It is imperative for young people to take their age and utilize it instead of ignoring it and viewing it as a detractor. The biggest lesson I have learned being the baby in the office is that it is your merits, attitude, and work ethic that point out what an asset to the team you are; age has nothing to do with it.