August 9, 2018

Intern report: Maria Daniela Aguilera at Moen

Maria Daniela Aguilera is a candidate in Weatherhead's MSM-Operations Research and Supply Chain Management program 

When I was asked to write two blog entries about my internship experience, I thought they would be very different from one another, and that I’d be writing them very far apart. However, the time has gone by so fast that it still feels like the beginning of the summer—I’m still soaking up all the lessons from this experience. 

I’m currently preparing for my internship presentation, where I will summarize the projects, activities and key learnings from my summer experience to the operations teams and managers at Moen. It is an excellent opportunity to pause and think about the main takeaways. 

After this first part of the internship and my first year in Cleveland, I have a clear sense of myself, I challenged everything I knew and I was willing to re-learn. I was searching for the next milestone in my career, and I found it.  

One of the challenges I had during this time—and this one may seem somewhat obvious, but it is worth mentioning—was working with significant amounts of data while learning about the business. When I started my master’s degree last fall, I had only a general idea of the quantitative and data analytics side. During the three months I have been in my internship, I have been able to apply those concepts, combine them with my previous experience and work with large amounts of data that Excel cannot handle. Is great to see the real power of using data to bring ideas to the next level and to uncover opportunities to move forward. 

The most rewarding part of my summer experience at Moen was when some of my suggestions for improving input data were considered and implemented. It gave me immense joy to see how the concepts I learned at Weatherhead could be applied to enhance the functioning of a supply chain. I will be continuing to intern at Moen next semester, so I’m able to keep helping and adding value to the organization in the upcoming months.

My internship experience has helped me confirm my professional interests within the supply chain field. After this experience, I am convinced that I want to keep growing and working in inventory, planning and continuous improvement processes in a manufacturing company in the consumer goods sector. It also gave me the opportunity to extend my options and consider a wide range of career paths, including internal consulting, where I could apply my problem-solving skills. 

To summarize, the biggest takeaway is confirmation in my career direction. I am passionate about being an agent of change and being part of the supply chain in a company is so powerful. You’re able to leverage the competitive advantage, impact customer satisfaction, optimize costs and increase profitability all by identifying root causes, bottlenecks and other shortcomings, determining the best fixes and engaging the affected areas.   

I would like to thank Margaret Hagan in the marketing department from Weatherhead for inviting me to share my experience through this blog; I felt honored to be asked. 

Thank you to everyone in the Career Management Office, who’ve been excellent guides in helping me set my goals, strategize my next steps and learn how to tailor my profile to different opportunities. I would also like to thank Matt Maloney for always checking in and for giving me great professional advice anytime I asked him.

Thank you to all the operations research professors for their teachings and help when I came back to them with doubts, especially prof. Kamlesh Mathur who helped me find technical information during my internship. Also to Karla Schiebel, for being great a support this summer.

I am very grateful to be part of Weatherhead and have met such wonderful people here.  I am happy to say I made the right choice when choosing a graduate school. I’m ready to come back for my last semester! 

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