The key to success is having confidence in yourself, according to 2016 graduate Will Miller (Kappa Alpha) from St. Louis, MO, who is building his own self confidence in a 10-week internship with alumnus Brock Ayers ’82 (Delta Tau Delta), a Wells Fargo Advisor in Chesterfield, MO.
When notified of this new internship program by the national Wells Fargo, LLC office, Ayers contacted the Westminster Career Services Office to encourage Westminster students to apply. This is just one of the hundreds of ways our Westminster alumni reach out to help our students succeed.
Miller was selected as one of over 3,000 applicants to fill 63 positions in this new Wells Fargo Advisors internship program.
As the numbers indicate, securing one of these internships was a highly competitive process, but Miller had an edge in the interview process because of his membership in the Westminster Blue Blazers Investment Committee. This Westminster Club where members gain firsthand experience in buying stocks and managing investment portfolios provided a distinct advantage for Miller that most of the applicants could not match.
His first week he spent three days in Charlotte, NC for the Wealth and Investment Management Intern Orientation, where along with receiving substantive information, he built relationships by networking with this talented group of young professionals from across America. He readily admits that coming from Westminster, he was quite confident in reaching out to a very diverse group of fellow interns whom he had never met.
“No matter the gender, race, or ethnicity, I was already familiar with the underlying culture surrounding each of these groups of people,” Miller says. “This gave me the confidence to begin conversations, ask relevant questions, and ultimately begin to develop a network within Wells Fargo.”
During the three days, Miller heard more than a dozen speeches, but he picked up an underlying theme which ran through all their advice—the key to success is confidence in yourself.
Along with a wealth of information about Wells Fargo Advisors and its mission, Miller also learned a great deal about how to behave in a business setting and the importance of treating others with honesty, respect, and consideration, or “business etiquette” as it is known.
Some of the “dos” and “don’ts” were:
- State your full name before speaking to an unfamiliar group or people;
- Inform the organizer of an office event if you can’t come;
- Instead of “I’m sorry to bother you,” use “excuse me, do you have a moment?” and
- Use phone calls, not emails, for important discussions.
Other nuggets of wisdom which stood out to Miller were: ask questions, write everything down, be a self-starter, have patience, and thank people with handwritten notes.
After three very informative days, Miller returned to his Missouri internship with one promise to himself: to transform himself by turning the level of excellence he left behind into long term professional habits.