The Exchange Foundations team spent the day in Boston, catching up with the local BAFF interns, and putting some familiar names to their faces at some of our long-time partnering Host Companies, IXL Center and Skanska.
Our first stop was at IXL Center, a company specialized in guiding corporations and individuals towards developing innovation management. Our hosts, Julius Bautista, Senior Manager, Ronald Jonash, Senior Partner, and Kevin Cuddeback, CMO, welcomed the CIEE staff members with a Power Point presentation about all of the CIEE-sponsored interns who have been part of the IXL team. Julius offered a remarkably elaborate overview of each Intern's projects while at IXL, and spoke about the ongoing professional relationships that IXL enjoys with the interns after their repatriation. The two professional teams were also delighted to share information about their latest products, including IXL's professional and organizational development courses, as well as CIEE's new Research Scholar program.
The next stop on our itinerary was lunch with the interns at Toscano's Restaurant. The CIEE staff was delighted to hear updates about the interns' current work projects, recent travel experiences, and professional prospects back home.
After a hearty lunch, our final stop on the itinerary was Skanska Boston. Skanska has hosted numerous CIEE interns at their offices throughout the United States, including Somerville, New York, and Oakland, California. At Skanska, our interns gain experience with Building Information Modeling (3D and 4D model imagery), as well as the elements of LEED construction (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design). Our host was Albert Zulps, Regional Director, Virtual Design and Construction. The team toured the newly designed Skanska office, which included an open-concept layout (a familiar setting to the CIEE staff), with Smart meeting rooms, and an ultra-modern Skanska gym. Albert offered the CIEE crew an enlightening demonstration of the capabilities of BIM software, and even allowed us to try on a new 3-D virtual reality headset. He then spoke with enthusiasm about their recent CIEE interns, the skills they offered to and gained from the company, and projects to which they contributed. Other Skanska members of staff also popped in for a visit, eager to express their appreciation of the BAFF/HAESF programs, including Office Manager, Laurie Clifford, Director of Staff Development, Catherine Rose, and VDC Manager, Matt Emond.
We are very grateful to both IXL and Skanska for welcoming both the CIEE staff and our interns into their busy and innovative worlds. We look forward to a continual partnership throughout the coming years!