Three headshots of young, female students featured in a graphic that reads Learning by Doing: DePaul Graduates' Insights from the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center Internship Program

The Coleman Entrepreneurship Center is a hub of innovation and entrepreneurship programming at Kellstadt. Among its many resources are its summer internship program. Open to all Kellstadt students, the program expanded this year to include a track for organizations that focus on sustainability or on making a social impact.

Over on their blog, Entrepreneurship at DePaul, the Coleman center is sharing the stories of three of those interns. Two of them are from Kellstadt; one intern brings her expertise as a student in the school of public health. All three agreed: getting hands-on experience through the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business changed their trajectories for the better. 

Read on for the first story in the series. And stay tuned into Entrepreneurship at DePaul for the rest! 

A headshot labeled Part 1: Nikita Nese

Growing up in the vibrant city of Bangalore, often dubbed the “Silicon City” of India, I was a part of an environment where startups thrived and the spirit of entrepreneurship was tangible. My goals of becoming an entrepreneur have never swayed. With my bachelor’s degree in engineering and nearly two years of experience as a software engineer under my belt, I now stand on the cusp of graduating from the MBA program at DePaul’s Kellstadt Graduate School of Business in spring 2024.

My interest in business strategy, development and crafting impactful marketing campaigns has influenced my choices at DePaul. While my academic decisions have shaped my educational trajectory, my extracurriculars are paving the way for my future career.

Last summer, a pivotal chapter in my career journey unfolded when the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center connected me with Qilo, a data analytics firm specializing in utility data, particularly electrical grid data. Their mission is to uncover energy-efficient and cost-saving solutions in this highly niche field.

At Qilo, I took on the role of a Digital Marketing/Business Development Intern, in which I worked directly under the CEO. Stepping into business management for the first time, especially within the unique context of a small-stage startup, was undoubtedly a daunting beginning.

The challenges I faced at Qilo were multifaceted. Delving into the intricacies of grid data and unravelling the industry’s complexities made for a steep learning curve. Furthermore, the highly competitive nature of the market necessitated that we distinguish ourselves.

Challenges aside, this journey was also marked by remarkable learning experiences. My time at Qilo deepened my understanding of data interpretation and marketing, enabling me to craft campaigns that resonated profoundly with our clients. From the ground up, Qilo entrusted me with solidifying the company’s brand identity and implementing rules and branding techniques. I conceptualized, executed and meticulously managed several campaigns that enhanced the organization’s digital presence by a significant percentage. Observing the tangible outcomes of my efforts cultivated a newfound sense of confidence and self-assurance.

In addition to this, I had the unique opportunity to represent the company at various industry events and conferences, where I was engaged in pitching to potential clients and investors. Not only did these experiences serve as a significant networking platform, but they also introduced me to influential figures within the industry.

Being part of the trajectory of a startup enterprise instilled in me a sense of solidity and innovation, both of which are crucial in a highly specialized field. My time at Qilo has unquestionably set the stage for my future. As I move on to the next chapter of my journey, I look forward to continuing in the active domain of business management strategy, with a particular focus on marketing within organizations. Since my internship, I have taken on the role of Director of Social Strategy and Communications for one of DePaul’s student organizations.

Looking beyond my academic journey, my post-graduation plans revolve around a career dedicated to marketing and business strategy. My time at Qilo fueled my entrepreneurial spirit. In the long term, I dream of establishing my own venture in business consulting.

My experiences at Kellstadt, including my transformative internship at Qilo, have shaped my career trajectory and instilled in me a deep sense of purpose and a passion for innovation and entrepreneurship. As I prepare to welcome the opportunities that lie ahead, I remain deeply grateful for the support and guidance from the Coleman Entrepreneurship Center that have brought me to this point in my journey.


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Posted on

December 18, 2023