After a two-year hiatus, Launch Fishers brought back their Launch Fishers High School Fellowship this summer with the purpose to develop future entrepreneurs and business leaders. The internship is available for Hamilton Southeastern High School and Fishers High School students who want to learn more about entrepreneurship and gain real-world experience through Launch Fishers’ three-day bootcamp, where students sharpen their professional skills, and the 8-week internship with the student’s host company.
Over the new few months, we’ll highlight some of the students and host companies who participated in this year’s program. Stay tuned to learn more about the impact of this unique program and some of our city’s up-and-coming community innovators!
Host Company: Spokenote
Supervisor: Cory McEachran
Tell us about Spokenote:
Spokenote develops technology that improves how people communicate, providing tools for human expression and communication via digital media.
What inspired you to get involved with the program?
Working from the IoT Lab to launch Spokenote LLC, we found out about this wonderful program! Helping young people explore the possibilities was an opportunity we could not pass up!
Tell us about the projects that the fellow worked on with your company. How did they impact your business?
Samaria was a powerhouse! She worked in production to complete orders. In marketing, she did extensive research in three key markets, as well as being a great help in our companies local and national launch events.
What’s one piece of advice you would give students looking to pursue a career in your field?
In this ever-changing job market, one thing never changes—the people with drive and enthusiasm will rise to the top.
Why is this program important for the community?
This program is great because it allows Fishers to grow its next generation of entrepreneurs. It lets these students know that you don’t have to move away to make your dreams happen. Opportunity is where you make it!
Fellow: Samaira Lee
What inspired you to join the Launch Fishers Fellowship Program?
I first learned about the Launch Fishers High School Fellowship Program through a post on Twitter. I was immediately excited to research the program because I viewed it as an opportunity to continue to grow as a learner during the summer break from school. However, the aspect of the fellowship that inspired me to apply for and ultimately join the program was its focus on entrepreneurship. Before my internship, I held many misconceptions about entrepreneurship; in my mind, I envisioned it as something that is reserved for natural risk-takers and inventors. Entrepreneurial ventures are innovative, but they are also carefully planned and managed. Entrepreneurs form extremely smart, experienced, and capable teams (like the one at Spokenote) that will ensure the business launches into a successful and thriving company. I feel lucky that my original interest in learning more about entrepreneurship inspired me to join the Launch Fishers High School Fellowship Program.
What was your favorite part of the summer fellowship?
I am incredibly grateful for how Spokenote approached my internship. They exposed me to multiple aspects of business operations, including production, technology, marketing and sales, and events; as a result, I acquired a variety of professional skills and adapted to working with the entire Spokenote team. This was my favorite part of my summer fellowship because it pushed me to grow in my abilities to make decisions and complete skilled tasks. Now that my internship has ended, I feel that I can articulate my ideas and knowledge more accurately, and I have a greater understanding of business and entrepreneurship, which are two subjects that I was unfamiliar with at the beginning of the summer.
How do you think the fellowship program will launch your future career?
Through the Launch Fishers High School Fellowship Program, I have made several connections that I believe will be beneficial in launching my future career. During boot camp week, I met several community-oriented leaders like myself who aspire to pursue top careers and occupations. Emerging myself in a program with highly motivated students prompted me to seek more opportunities to advance my knowledge and skills in academic and extracurricular domains. During my internship at Spokenote, I observed my team members operating in their spheres of expertise and noticed how they all possessed one important trait: leadership. I believe that emulating the versatility and efficiency of the Spokenote team as an intern will contribute to my strive to develop as a leader as well.
What’s one piece of advice you would give future Launch Fishers fellows?
Next year, I will advise Launch Fishers fellows to use boot camp week as a time to reflect on what they have accomplished throughout their academic and extracurricular experiences and to consider what subjects they feel most passionate about. Companies are seeking students who are curious, hardworking, and dependable, so performing the learning exercise that I have described can help students prepare for their interview day. My advice to future fellows beginning their internships is to practice balance throughout the summer. For many students, this is their first time working in a part-time job, so it can be difficult to manage an internship while also supporting one’s mental, social, and physical health. However, it is vital to demonstrate self-care in order to perform well while working and upon beginning the new school year.
What are your plans after graduation?
My professional plan is to pursue a career in which I can demonstrate my passion for community leadership. In my third year of high school, I will be taking advanced courses in mathematics, physics, and psychology; eventually, I would like to earn undergraduate and graduate degrees in these subjects or a related field. During my career, a goal of mine is to become a professor at a college or university and conduct research with other civic-minded educators. Using my prior educational and professional background, my highest aspiration is to work within my statewide or national government in a position that is based on my expertise within a particular field.
Grace Gerig has lived in Fishers her entire life and graduated from Hamilton Southeastern High School in 2020. A junior at Purdue University, Grace is studying Public Relations and Strategic Communication, minoring in Political Science and Human Resource Management, and pursuing a Collaborative Leadership Certificate. At Purdue, Grace is involved with Boiler Communication, a student-run Public Relations agency, and serves as an Account Executive on their leadership team. Grace was a 2-year member of the nationally recognized Purdue Dance Team and enjoys teaching dance and choreographing routines. She is also involved with her sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha, and manages her chapter’s Instagram. On weekends, Grace likes to work out in the morning at the F45 Fishers/Geist location, grab a Dunkin iced coffee, and sit with her family on their back porch. Follow her on Instagram and LinkedIn.