Internship program puts students to work

Published 12:00 am Thursday, July 29, 2010

NATCHEZ — For Alcorn State University students Charlette Mock and Mitchell Chappell, the summer is not a time to take a break.

Natchez resident Mock, 21, is interning at the Adams County accounting office and Woodville resident Chappell, 21, is interning at Bad Boy Buggies.

“I wanted him to stay and work until school starts back,” said Chappell’s boss Bridget Crouch, manager of quality and inventory control. “We don’t want him to leave, he has done a good job, and I don’t know what we are going to do without him.”

Mock’s summer boss, accounting department head Patsy Bryant, thought the young accounting major is doing a good job.

“I just feel like she has been an asset to us,” Bryant said. “We interviewed three students, and I am really happy with the choice we made.”


Mock learned of the program through an e-mail the school sent out and liked the idea of being able to live at home for the summer and save some money.

“It was convenient to not have to go somewhere else,” Mock said. “But I have also really enjoyed working at this place.”

Working in the county’s accounting department has given Mock an opportunity to learn many real world experiences, she said.

“It is different to see how things really take place, instead of reading about it in a book,” Mock said. “I’ve seen the process of putting together claims and payroll.”

Mock said she likes accounting because it is fast paced.

“The job is very busy, and the day goes by really fast,” she said. “It keeps you on your toes.”

Mock, the Natchez High School class of 2007 valedictorian, said she took an interest in accounting for two reasons.

“Part of it is influence from my dad, who is an accountant,” Mock said. “But I like math too. It has always been one of my better subjects.”


For business major Chappell, working at Bad Boy Buggies was an excellent opportunity, he said.

“It is a local up and coming business that keeps getting stronger,” Chappell said. “This June, we sold 200 buggies — last June, we only sold three.

“The business is blowing up with demand for the product.”

Chappell said part of the reason the business keeps improving is because of quality control. Chappell spent the summer creating the position of final quality control.

“Before a buggy goes to a dealer, it has to have my stamp of approval,” Chappell said. “I want to make sure the buggy will satisfy the customer before they get it. If I don’t think it is up to standard, I send it back for more work.

“I oversee the final product of roughly $800,000 worth of buggies a week.”

Chappell said he took it upon himself to keep doing more than was asked of him when he was creating the position, and Bad Boy Buggies is turning his position into two jobs.

“My motivation comes from my will to succeed and my will to see the company succeed,” Chappell said. “Bad Boy has treated me real well here, I am going to miss the people and am sad to go.”

A graduate Wilkinson County Christian Academy and Copiah-Lincoln Community College Natchez Campus, Chappell has a 4.0 grade point average throughout college.

Once the senior graduates from Alcorn, he plans to get his law degree. Chappell’s parents are Robert Chappell and Amanda Van Buren. Chappell is married to Bridget Chappell.

Mock’s parents are Charles and Brenda Mock.

The Alcorn State Unversity School of Business internship program places students in career fields of their interest all across the country. This year, more than 20 students received internships as close as Natchez and as far away as Mexico. Other internships include work with the Space Missile Defense Command in Huntsville, Ala., and John Deere in North Carolina.

Daye Dearing coordinates the internship program, and said businesses, local and out-of-town, allow the school to encourage a well-rounded education.

“The goal of the internship program, in the School of Business, is to further enhance our students’ education by providing and encouraging methods of experiential learning outside the classroom,” Dearing said.

Internships are open to any junior, senior or MBA School of Business student.

Internships are typically completed during the summer, but can be done during the fall or spring semester, as well. The length of the internship is 10-14 weeks. Businesses providing the internships determine the wage amount paid to the student intern. Students can earn up to six course credit hours for an internship. If a student earns course credit for their internship, he or she must submit, to a faculty member, short weekly papers throughout the length of the internship and a final paper at its conclusion.