Internship Success - Lactalis American Group
Mekhyi Bristol,’21, is a Brooklyn, New York, native pursuing his MBA in strategic management. Currently, Mekhyi is a category development and e-commerce marketing intern with Lactalis American Group located in Buffalo, New York. He also holds a graduate assistantship with Niagara University’s Office of Enrollment Marketing.
How did you secure the opportunity?
In my senior year as a food and consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketing major, I was approached by Dr. Ann Rensel about a mentorship opportunity with the president of the Food Marketing Center of Excellence Board. The board is made up of local and national leadership in the food and CPG space. Through this connection, I received an interview opportunity with the vice president of store brands at Lactalis American Group and eventually given a internship with the company.
What do you do on a daily basis?
I collect and analyze data, then identify key insights and sales opportunities. From there I create reports using IRI, consumer survey platforms, and retailer data that help manage e-commerce relationships such as Kroger and Instacart’s online platforms. I also initiate banner ads, product search, and other shopper activation campaigns using this data.
Most importantly, what did you learn?
I learned that my focused major in food and CPG marketing put me ahead of the curve. I understood the industry coming into my internship and was able to contribute in meetings early on. I was able to integrate seamlessly with current market terminology, applied concepts towards company issues, and held effective conversations with senior management. From the internship itself, being able to understand and digest large amounts of data and being able to make highly conclusive interpretations of the business and current market was a huge takeaway.
What advice do you have for future students?
Get involved and take advantage of the opportunities Niagara has to offer. Niagara University has provided me with every resource necessary to get a head start in my career journey. I was involved with study abroad, internships, the mentorship program, case study competitions, the marketing association, and much more. There are resources and services for everyone, so getting involved can only benefit you and build a solid foundation entering into your career.
If you have worked with Career Services, how have they helped you?
Career Services has been a major help in my early career journey. I have received help with my resume, numerous cover letters, interview preparation, internship search, and professionalism. I had trouble tailoring cover letters to the specific roles I applied for, but through career services I learned to combine my experiences, the job description and the company’s values to effectively show my qualifications for the position. I highly recommend students to connect with career services to get the proper tools to build a solid foundation coming out of college.