How I Landed an Internship Because of EcoCAR

Katie O'Neal at the Year One Competition in Los Angeles

Katie O’Neal at the Year One Competition in Los Angeles

Katie O’Neal is currently the Wayne State University EcoCAR 2 Communications Manager. This is her story about how her involvement in EcoCAR 2 landed her an internship with competition-level sponsor Bosch.

EcoCAR 2 doesn’t just open doors for engineers, but communication students too. I have been able to network with automotive companies through outreach and community events during my time as Wayne State University’s Communication Manager.

This past summer, I worked as a full-time elective vehicle (EV) marketing intern at Bosch Service Solutions in Warren, Michigan.

During my internship, I worked with a small team specializing in level-two charging stations. Bosch is GM’s preferred provider of 240V charging stations for the Chevrolet Volt and Spark EV.  My main role within the team was to work with high-volume Chevy Volt dealerships throughout the United States, focusing primarily on southern California. I created a face-to-face relationship between Bosch and high-volume dealerships by sending representatives to dealerships to inform them about the products, services and benefits Bosch offers their customers.

My internship allowed me to gain hands-on experience in communications, marketing and public relations. On a daily basis, I tracked Bosch-related posts on popular electric vehicle forums and respond to them on behalf of the company. I provided copy and content for www.pluginnow.com.  I attended workplace charging tradeshows and ride and drives, and I even sat in on an in-home 240V charging installation.

Everyone from Detroit has an interest in the automotive industry, but interning with Bosch amplified my interest. Working with electric vehicles is fresh and exciting and it is a new technology with a very specific target audience. It makes marketing and communications for electric vehicles a challenge I enjoy! This opportunity wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for the connections I made through the EcoCAR 2 program!

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