Intern Diary: Giving Back at Unilever

Chelsea Miller
Intern Diary: Giving Back at Unilever
Sponsored by, Unilever

WayUp teamed up with seven Unilever interns who wrote about what it’s like to work for a company that makes products used by 2.5 billion people around the world every single day. Today’s post is from Chelsea Miller, Human Resources and Communications intern, Jackie Robinson Foundation scholar and student at Columbia University.

On the first day of my Unilever internship, I promised myself two things:

  1. That I would use the next ten weeks as an opportunity to truly challenge myself.
  2. That I would approach all facets of the company with an open mind and open heart.

I’m Co-Founder and CEO of a non-profit called Women Everywhere Believe, Inc. (WEBelieve) that focuses on training the next generation of civic and corporate women leaders. Unilever was my first corporate internship. Before that, I had done work primarily in the non-profit and government sectors.

For me, Unilever was an opportunity to broaden my understanding of cross-sector collaboration to solve some of the most pressing issues of our time. As a Jackie Robinson Foundation Scholar, I was familiar with Unilever’s commitment to working across industries because of their partnership with the Foundation, which was founded by Rachel Robinson, wife of the late civil rights leader and baseball great  Jackie Robinson. It’s dedicated to providing the necessary resources to close the achievement gap for college students of color, and Unilever was its first corporate sponsor. However, investing in partnerships is only a small part of Unilever’s purpose-driven model.

As a Unilever intern, I was placed in a dual role in their Human Resources and Communications departments this summer. Over the course of ten weeks, I worked on incredible projects that focused on framing and tackling challenges around food insecurity, homelessness, and unemployment.

One of those projects was Growing Roots, where Unilever partners with local organizations to build farms and gardens in inner cities. The goal is to provide access to and education about growing and cooking healthy food in urban communities like Chicago, Los Angeles, Houston and New York. It was amazing to see how organizations with seemingly different interests could work together to meet their priorities.

As we look to build a better world, we must hold all sectors accountable in taking the necessary steps to sustain communities, economies, and the earth. It’s increasingly important for corporations to help drive this change. As I finish my senior year at Columbia University, I am grateful for the exposure to a company that has truly shown its commitment to setting and raising the bar.

Head over to Unilever’s page on WayUp to check out open opportunities and apply!