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George Mason UniversitySchool of Business

Managing the Summer Internship: Double Major Learns Double Roles

Written by Juliann Phan on .

cyrusAaliyah Cyrus, from Culpepper, Virginia, was eager to study at a university close to Washington, D.C., where business opportunities flourish. A junior studying accounting and management with a minor in international business, she says, “I do stay busy, but I’ve always been great at time management, and refining my soft and technical skills at my internship has helped me become strategic.”

Cyrus says she chose to attend George Mason University because it, “was my first choice and it feels like home more than any other place. I love the exposure Mason has given me to explore the D.C. area with new opportunities I never expected.” Cyrus stays active on campus as a member of Gamma Phi Beta and a Student Ambassador.

Currently Cyrus interns as a human resources assistant with The Tauri Group, an innovator in analytics consulting that focuses in areas of Homeland Security and Defense, life sciences, preparedness and resilience, intelligence, and cyber, located in Alexandria, Virginia.

She says she started learning about recruitment processes with the business development team. “I have been given the freedom to explore different roles with The Tauri Group directly related to my majors.” Recently, Cyrus is learning how to manage and devise government contracts, an essential function to The Tauri Group.

Cyrus says the coursework in the School of Business has offered real-world application, which has helped her succeed in her internship. “Survey in Accounting and Operations Management has helped me with my position, especially in accounts payable, processing, and journalizing.”

She has also utilized Career Services to review her resume and cover letter to enhance her competitiveness in the job market. “I never understood the importance of resumes until I had mine reviewed and understood the importance of keywords as a mechanism to help boost your resume.”

Cyrus sites the importance of having a mentor or role model, which increased her self-awareness and desire to be her own boss one day. She credits Angie Caro Walker, vice president of Human Resources as a mentor. Walker has helped Cyrus understand the dynamics at work, how to navigate challenging situations, and accepting new opportunities with patience, not haste. “She has taught me how to work through things with ease.”

Cyrus also credits her mother as someone who has directly influenced her entrepreneurial spirit. “I grew up seeing my mom as a busy manager for a business and obtaining her master’s while I was in middle school, so I grew up appreciating business.”

Cyrus plans to study abroad next year in Marseille, France. Cyrus speaks French and Latin. “I want to learn about how businesses operate in another country, especially France.” The food, the fashion, the business—Cyrus has no doubt she will fit right in.

She plans to graduate fall 2019 and hopes to work as a program manager with a government agency. However, she’s keeping her options open, knowing that her study aboard opportunity could result in new adventures and new career opportunities.

When asked about her internship, she says, “Take every opportunity your internship gives you and don’t let your nerves get to you. There is always so much to learn in business.”