Jamie McAllister is a recent graduate of the LBJ School of Public Affairs. Jamie’s focus at the LBJ School is on economic development and transportation policy, and she recently completed an internship with a Michigan-based Economic Development Corporation on the Canadian border. She is currently is interning with M Squared Strategies, a public policy consulting firm in Washington D.C. Prior to attending graduate school, she spent one year studying abroad and 2 years working as a development officer with a nonprofit organization in the Washington D.C. Area. As an intern at ATI, Jamie assisted with operations and fund development. Jamie had this to say about her tenure at ATI:
I began my internship with the Austin Technology Incubator in September 2009 and finished recently in May 2010. I sincerely believe that what I learned at ATI will forever shape my public policy perspectives. As a master’s student at the LBJ School of Public Affairs, I have not had much interaction with the entrepreneurial community, nor have I previously considered the world of entrepreneurship as valuable to my life and career.
This changed dramatically while interning with ATI. As a small organization, I was able to interact frequently with the directors and other interns. I learned as much from fellow interns – most of whom were business, engineering, and law students – about various aspects of establishing a technology startup company. While developing grant proposals and logic models for each vertical, I gained a broad perspective on the importance of venture capital, entrepreneur networks, due diligence research on product feasibility, and support from the academic community.
Overall, I learned a lot and felt like I was able to contribute to the success of the organization. Because the interns are treated as equals of the staff, there is the opportunity to take on a significant amount of responsibility and ample space to be challenged by the nature of the work. A few additional skills that I picked up, as necessity dictated, included facilitating meetings, developing recording-keeping systems, and events planning. Depending on the nature of the individual intern, there is a lot of room to try new tasks of interest and find oneself with a basket of resume building materials.