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Chicago Scholars Emerge Intern Blog: First Week Reflection

Meet The Emerge Intern – First Week Reflection

Jennifer Vergara, Intern at BMO US and Chicago Scholar from the Class of 2026

The Chicago Scholars and Invest for Kids Emerge Summer Career and Leadership Program is in full swing! We’re celebrating this year’s class of interns by bringing you a weekly blog post focused on their experience – starting this week with a reflection on their first official week of work.

This week, we’re featuring a blog post from Jennifer Vergara, whom is interning this summer with BMO Bank, and is a Chicago Scholar from the Class of 2026. She is currently attending Gold Plus Partner, DePaul University. Read on for her full post:

Today was my second day at BMO Bank with the Inclusive Segments team, & I could not be more grateful for the opportunity!

Firstly, as a first-generation Latina, an internship is a door opener for many more opportunities where people like myself tend to be both underrepresented & excluded. Internships are important in the sense that they allow students like myself to gain valuable experience, develop their professional network, & be one step closer to finding their role in the world. I believe that it is important to make internships accessible to underrepresented groups because of its ability to diversify the workforce and expose them to job opportunities that they otherwise would not have known about.

Furthermore, my professional experiences & connections continue to open up doors for me even years later. This summer, my role at BMO will allow me to continue to advocate for increased access of resources to underrepresented groups in the banking world, build & learn from my professional network, & put both my skills & educational studies into real-world practice.

I speak from experience, thanks to my connection with Chicago Scholars’ Emerge Scholars Program. The Emerge Scholars Program connects diverse students from all throughout Chicago with internship opportunities in all kinds of industries from finance to law, STEM, & government. The summer before my freshman year of college, I was fortunate enough to become a Cubs/Emerge Scholar. This gave me the opportunity to take on a rotational internship at PepsiCo. The experience & exposure that I gained throughout my time at PepsiCo allowed me to tap into the wisdom of professionals far into their careers, discover new roles in the food/logistics industries, & become a much more well-rounded individual in the world of business. Organizations such as Chicago Scholars continue to make a great impact in the lives of individuals & the city, & their mission is one that should continue to be upheld & supported.

This new role is yet another exciting opportunity for me! I am looking forward to continuing growing, learning, & making meaningful contributions.

Inspired by Jennifer’s story? Head here to learn more about becoming a partner with us! And stay tuned for more blog posts from our Emerge Interns in the weeks to come!