Growth Beyond the Internship

Meet Monserrat

The VAAN team is passionate about nurturing the talent and empowering the next generation of tech leaders. This month, we had the pleasure to reconnect with Monserrat, who completed a VAAN internship back when our partner organization, Code Nation, was still known as ScriptEd. Code Nation was founded in 2012 with the mission of equipping students in under-resourced high schools with the skills and connections to enter tech careers which can be felt through the success stories of alumni like Monserrat.

A First Taste of the Professional World

Monserrat's internship at Vaan served as her first foray into the professional world. Monserrats internship work centered around web design, coding, and marketing. Observing VAAN processes like competitive research, user experience (UX) interviews, and brainstorming sessions fueled her passion for brand storytelling. "Although of course it was centered around web design and coding," she says, "I also got the opportunity to do some work in the marketing world - which is the field I ultimately wanted to be in," Montserrat explains.

From Code to Creativity

Monserrat's journey into her career began with hands-on contributions and immersive learning experiences. Engaging directly in real projects, she contributed to market research for a backpack company during its prototyping phase. Additionally, she actively participated in UX brainstorming sessions, where her insights were valued and her opinions voiced. Through these experiences, Monserrat discovered her passion for the strategic and creative aspects of marketing, realizing that while she enjoyed coding and building websites, it was the nuanced world of marketing strategy and creativity that truly ignited her professional aspirations, setting the stage for her promising career ahead.

Building a Foundation for Success

Monserrat's internship at VAAN exposed her to all elements of the agency and she specifically calls out the learnings she gained working on the various VAAN teams, expressing her ideas, asking insightful questions, and developing marketing materials. A skillset that proved invaluable during her subsequent marketing internships at the University of Pennsylvania's publishing press, a cancer awareness organization, and a workplace wellbeing company all since her time at VAAN.

Paying it Forward

Monserrat's time at Vaan extended far beyond personal growth; as she was inspired by her internship to join a CodeNation-like club at Penn, where she mentored high school students in website development. Sharing the same joy for coding and design instilled in her by Vaan and Code Nation, Monserrat not only cultivated her own skills but also empowered the next generation of tech enthusiasts. As she continues to build her promising future, Monserrat's potential knows no bounds. Her internship with VAAN served as a springboard, allowing her to build and leverage a diverse array of skills for her lifelong career. The VAAN team is cheering Monserrat on and celebrates her journey as well as the lasting impact our partnership with Code Nation has had on shaping future tech leaders.