A Q&A with 2018 Lime Connect Fellow, Emeline Lakrout
How did you first hear about the Lime Connect Fellowship Program?
I first learned about Lime Connect during the end of my senior year in high school. My dad and I were searching for opportunities geared toward professionals with disabilities and came across the organization. As a Lime Network member, we receive regular emails from Lime Connect about various opportunities. When I was a sophomore, I read about the Lime Connect Fellowship program. It caught my eye and didn't take long for me to realize that I needed to apply!
What stood out to you about the Fellowship Program?
One of the biggest things that stood out to me was Lime Connect's willingness to invest in the prospective Fellows. It's expensive to send so many people to New York - both for the Super Days for Fellow finalists, and the Leadership Symposium for Fellows. It was clear to me from the start that Lime Connect and its partners truly saw value in the Fellows. On a more personal note, I was attracted by the career and networking opportunities that the Fellowship Program provided. As a business major and career-focused individual, I saw the emphasis on professional development as invaluable.
What was your experience like at the symposium?
I genuinely enjoyed my time at the symposium. The sessions were interactive, and there was an abundance of opportunities to connect with other Fellows. During the symposium, we attended dinners and events where we were able to connect with all of Lime Connect's partners, as well as past Fellows classes. These were great events to get some one-on-one time with professionals and people who have already succeeded in the career search process. After I returned home, I stayed in contact with many of the individuals I met and received meaningful advice and insight into careers with several of Lime Connect's partners.
What did you take away from your experience?
I was grateful to be able to solidify my interviewing skills and learn how to network in the most effective way possible. Both of these skills were honed at the right time-- just before recruitment season. I also enjoyed learning on a more personal note. By the time I attended the leadership symposium, I was already actively involved in the disability community and it was eye-opening to connect with other Fellows who were at different stages in their journey.
What has been the most helpful or impactful part(s) of the experience?
Of the entire experience, the direct connection to Lime Connect's partners has been the most valuable to me. My status as a Fellow helped me land several informational interviews with fantastic companies and undoubtedly helped me attain my dream position with Lime Connect's partner, Unilever. This summer, I'm excited to be interning for Unilever's renowned marketing department in the New York City area.
What has your experience with Lime Connect been like post-symposium?
Since the symposium, I've had several coaching calls with Lime Connect staff, conversations with employees at Lime Connect partners, and I keep in touch with many Fellows from my class. In the end, the Fellowship Program led me to my dream role as a marketing intern at Unilever. Even after I accepted my internship offer, Lime Connect continues to guide me with career tips and is helping me prepare for the internship. As a Fellow and member of The Lime Network, I know that this support will continue throughout my career.
What do you have coming up this year?
I look forward to my Unilever internship this summer. Beyond that, I've become increasingly involved with disability advocacy organizations - giving talks, planning conferences and awareness events, and running social media campaigns. As a personal project, I also run my own small YouTube channel where I provide resources and helpful videos for the visually impaired. This is only the beginning of my journey – both in marketing and disability – and who knows what else I might be working on in the near future!
What would you tell other students about why they should apply for the Fellowship Program?
If your goal is to one day be in the C-suite, you should apply. If you're looking to achieve a great career with any of Lime Connect's corporate partners, you should apply. It can be hard to find the right steps to launching a successful career, but being a Lime Fellow is definitely a great start!