Research & Development Intern
Department: Research & Development
Researched a possible food technology - this could be confusing/frustrating at times, because it was hard to know what info was useful. Also, for the online internship, they added a group project which was cross-departmental (e.g. I was in R&D, there were two sales interns and two supply chain interns) and it was really fun! My group still stays in contact, and we actually won (yay us!) so I had a great time. Our project was proposing a solution to a relevant, recent business problem PepsiCo was experiencing.
PepsiCo was honestly great to the R&D interns - sent us multiple boxes of food, assigned us mentors, really just did their best to make sure we could function well and felt included (despite the distance). Also, originally I was going to be paid $27/hr; but since the internship was cut in half (12 weeks > 6 weeks) they ended up paying us the SAME AMOUNT as if we had worked the whole 12 weeks! So I actually ended up getting paid $54/hr. Their logic was, interns are expecting to receive that much income over the summer, so they should still be paid that full amount. I thought that was incredibly generous of them and I really appreciate the thoughtfulness.
Would recommend it to people who...
Are interested in researching and developing new food technologies
Impact of work
Time spent working
How did working remote affect your experience?
It definitely made life a lot harder; we couldn't do any hands-on research using the beautiful research labs, and the internship was cut from 12 weeks to 6 weeks. However, they did do a good job of letting the interns connect with each other (by giving us a group project, and having virtual intern events). Honestly, I think they did the best they could, considering the circumstances.
How did you find the job / apply?
There were two parts of the interview - the first part was your typical behavioral questions (e.g. tell me a weakness). The second part, they pulled out pictures of process equipment, etc. and asked me questions like "how would you make this process faster?" "What issues would you face if you produced chips at a higher altitude, and shipped them to a lower altitude?" etc.
Advice on how to prepare
The technical part of the interview was honestly really intimidating, because I wasn't really sure what it would entail. Leaving that interview, I really thought I did bad, or at least mediocre. But I got the job! My advice for the technical portion is to verbalize your thinking process - it seemed to me like they wanted to know how I would approach the problem, rather than looking for a specific "correct" answer.
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