The Exit Interview: Final Thoughts from our Summer 2023 Interns

As the summer winds down, ESI must say goodbye to our skilled and diligent Summer interns. Before they depart, whether back to school or for other career opportunities, we sat down with several of them to discuss their time with the firm, reflect on their experience, and offer final thoughts on what was learned. Below is their commentary.

What was your favorite project you worked on and why?

Patrick: My favorite project was the climate resiliency index I worked on with my colleague, Samriddhi Khare. The project allowed us to use skills we developed in school to produce novel research to assist policymakers in future planning decisions.

Mohanish: I thoroughly enjoyed working on ESI’s project with the Navy Yard during my time with the firm. It was the primary focus of my work throughout my internship. Additionally, I found it fascinating to transform raw data into compelling and meaningful narrative.

Norah: I really enjoyed working on the marketing efforts highlighting staff and interns. It was fun to see everyone’s plans after college and what they were the most excited for when it came to their internship at ESI. I enjoyed managing the social media accounts and looking back on our intern highlights after they were all published.

Atara: My favorite project that I worked on focused on looking at alternative development scenarios for a former airfield. This project required me to delve into a completely new industry and truly expand my skills. I appreciated being able to contribute to the project and a community.

Athena: The airfield project Atara mentioned was also probably my favorite. It was the first big project that I got to see through an almost-final draft stage, which was exciting. It focuses on the redevelopment of the site and various proposed scenarios for what could be., It was fun to learn about a whole sub-culture that I never knew existed. After preliminary research and building a genuine curiosity, I found myself really engaged with the project proposal and analysis.

What would you want to learn more about if you had more time?

Unnati: I would have loved to learn more about input/output modeling in platforms like IMPLAN. I am super interested in the data modeling that ESI conducts and feel as though it is the backbone of almost all the firm’s studies. By understanding the modeling process, I would have developed a more conceptual understanding of the economic impact studies I worked on. I would have also loved to experience working on a project from start to finish, as it would have been really rewarding to see my research delivered to our clients in the form of a final report!

Joey: I would love to dive deeper into GIS mapping.

Atara: I would love to gain some deeper understanding about how the multipliers have been developed for input output modeling. I have gotten to understand how to use IMPLAN, and how we model, but I would love to have a greater understanding of the economic research that goes into developing the program.

Athena: I’ve been trying to develop stronger mapping skills, especially in an applied career environment. There’s always a slight difference between learning skills in a classroom and on the job— and so it’s been a great opportunity to learn from people here. I’m lucky enough to have more time here at ESI, and so this is where I hope to grow in the future.

Mohanish: I would want to see a project through completely. Given my internship time frame, that was difficult.

Patrick: I would want to be exposed to additional exciting projects and further develop my skills. In particular, I would like to learn more about data analysis and have more opportunities to test my knowledge.

Norah: I would’ve liked to dig deeper into the analytical side of marketing. For example, when’s the best time to post content or who is engaging via social media or email.

Do you feel prepared for the future after interning at ESI?

Mohanish: In some sense yes. It has given me a lot of confidence and the internship experience itself was invaluable.

Norah: I do feel prepared for my future. I believe that the Business Development and Marketing team gave me all the resources to further my knowledge in the marketing field, while also helping me grow as a person.

Patrick: I am prepared for the future after my time with ESI. I have had the opportunity to develop my skills and work with talented individuals who have helped me grow personally and professionally.

Unnati: Through this internship, I feel prepared to step into an economics, finance, or data analytics role at a firm. I learned a lot of technical skills that are highly transferable across industries, like data cleaning in R and Excel, input/output modeling, mapping, and more. In addition, this internship taught me a lot about teamwork, collaboration, and leadership. I am leaving with a better understanding of how to be both a team player and a leader in corporate team environments.

Atara: I feel much more prepared for the future after my co-op at ESI. My time here has given me skills, shown me what skills I want to get, and has also revealed to me the variety of professional and education pathways that can help me accomplish my goals. I have truly gotten exposure to a variety of industries and rolls during these past few months.

Joey: Yes. As someone interested in urban planning and local government, ESI was the perfect place for me to learn more about the city and interact with many planning adjacent fields.

Athena: Absolutely! I’ll be staying with ESI as an intern this Fall and a big part of that decision was based on how much I’ve learned already. Not only have I learned the ins-and-outs of policy specific topics, but there’s a whole list of hard skills and platforms that I’ve learned here. I’m really grateful to have built these transferable skills and see myself continuing to grow in the months ahead.

What is your favorite memory from this internship?

Joey: Our spontaneous lunches in Rittenhouse Square!

Patrick: I do not necessarily have a specific favorite memory. However, I have most enjoyed working with many different talented people at ESI and collaborating with them.

Athena: The staff lunches have been such a great way to connect with the entire team. Everyone comes from such different backgrounds and career experiences that there is so much to learn. At the same time, it can feel like a small world. There are personal and professional opportunities that I’ve learned about through conversation here, as well as classmates and professors that I didn’t know previously.

Norah: My favorite memory is anything that involved me being able to get to know my team!

Atara: My favorite memory has been our company walking tour of Center City, Philadelphia. Not only did I get to learn more about my coworkers, but I got to learn about the various projects that ESI has helped enable throughout the city that I know and love.

Unnati: My favorite memory is hanging out in Rittenhouse Square with fellow interns and analysts! This was always a great way to get to know everyone in a non-office setting.

Mohanish: The Wednesday lunches. It is a great thing that the firm does. It helps build relationships and improves company culture in my view. I interacted with a lot of people through these lunches.

What advice would you give new interns coming to ESI?

Norah: I would tell the new interns to take in every minute you are here. Everyone at ESI is not only extremely intelligent, but also welcoming. It’s a great place to work at and is filled by people who want to see you succeed and are here to help you every step of the way.

Atara: I would tell future interns to take advantage of each opportunity presented to you during your time here. Talk to your coworkers, step out of your comfort zone and take on projects in a new area, sit in while coworkers are practicing skills you are interested in learning, and just be eager to learn.

Patrick: Take every opportunity you get to learn from your colleagues. The staff of ESI has a breadth of experience across many disciplines, and I advise new interns to work hard and learn as much as possible during their time here.

Mohanish: Do not be afraid to ask for help or advice. Everyone here is extremely supportive and welcoming.

Joey: Ask for more work and ask for help!

Athena: Try and get the most out of your time here, because everyone is super willing to give you the opportunity to learn and grow. If there’s a certain skill that you want to develop or a type of work that you’re particularly interested in, be sure to vocalize that! ESI’s work is so varied that there’s room to grow in a million different directions.

Unnati: Take every opportunity to get involved with new projects. I think the best thing about ESI’ internship program is that interns have the opportunity to work on multiple projects at once. By always being involved with different projects, you gain exposure to a diverse range of work that the firm does. The more projects you can be a part of, the more skills you will be able to practice. In addition, this is a great way to work with many different people on staff and learn from those around you!


ESI would like to thank all of our interns for their hard work, dedication, and positive impact on the firm this summer. All of your contributions have helped us grow stronger in one way or another. We are excited to watch you succeed through future opportunities. Best of luck in the future as we know our paths will cross again!


Norah Serverson | [email protected]

Norah Serverson is a Marketing Assistant at Econsult Solutions, Inc. (ESI) supporting the Business Development and Marketing Department. Ms. Serverson is currently a student at La Salle University studying Marketing and Communication.

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