Q & A with the Interns of Booz Allen Hamilton's Summer Games

Aug 18, 2016 1:45 PM ET

The following post is part of a series of stories written by Booz Allen Hamilton’s Summer Games interns. The opinions and views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the views of Booz Allen

Written by Abby Lemert

With a pool of over 6,000 students applying for the program from all across the country, I expected there to be people of such disparate backgrounds to be a part of this program. What I came to find out is that those differences are exactly what Booz Allen was looking for in forming the most talented teams to create viable solutions to the world’s most complex problems.

I have the reputation of asking weird questions on my team, but through this I was able to learn a lot about my team. Everybody knows your name and major – but if you were an article of clothing, what would you be? What kind of restaurant would you want to open? I made it my mission to ask them each a “hard-hitting” question to see how they separate themselves from the rest, take a look at their answers.

Wes Norris:

Q: “What is something no one would have guessed about you?”

A: “I love minions (yes, from the movie ‘Despicable Me’). I was an AP Chemistry and Biology teacher with Teach for America for two years and remember the movie skyrocketing during my time in the classroom. I wasn’t as close with my kids as I’d hoped, but I started to talk about the movie and how adorable minions were – and something just clicked. They started approaching me far more often outside the classroom, all because we had something to talk about that had nothing to do with the Period Table of Elements.”

Jared Wilkins:

Q: “What is your absolute favorite thing to do in your free time?”

J: “Legos. I build models of my favorite planes and cars. It’s a bit trite, but Legos are a big reason I got into engineering. I love using my brain and hands simultaneously. There’s no feeling like building something from scratch, seeing how each piece supports each other to make something beautiful.”

Jacques Laine:

Q: “If you were going to start a podcast, what sort of podcast would it be, and who would be your cohost?”

A: “Good question! I think my podcast would be geared towards millennials (shocking, I know) and we’d discuss various topics from venture capitalist funding models and market fluctuations to national politics and social movements. My cohost would be the penetrating Jesse Williams. I don’t know if you listen to 2 Dope Queens (her recently launched podcast), but you should.

And yes, I’ve absolutely thought of this before.”

Bea Minana:

Q: “If you were a US state, what US state would you be?”

“What a question. I think Connecticut. I have strong appreciation for tradition, and I feel like Connecticut embodies that. It’s one of the oldest states in the Union and does a good jobs of preserving its landmarks. It’s also coastal! And I love the ocean.”

Abby Lemert:

Q: “Why did you want to work for Booz Allen?”

The reason I chose it over other internships was the fact that Booz works in so many different areas, doing so many different things. Rather than spending my whole summer learning about one incredibly specific thing, and limiting my future career opportunities, I wanted to learn about lots of different opportunities. The Summer Games internship would allow me to learn about many different subjects, clients and job opportunities. I'm glad I chose the Summer Games; working with people from so many different backgrounds allowed me to learn more about business, nonprofit organizations, data analysis and so much more.

Abby Lemert is an undergraduate student studying mechanical engineering at Purdue University and a Booz Allen intern in Washington, D.C.