Ahhh, Corporate America! Those two words alone always seem to send a rush of emotions to the surface. Everyone has an opinion on Corporate America and rarely does it leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling.

As an established leader in tech, you may think you know Cisco. But, I’m here to tell you – you’re probably wrong.

Three weeks ago, I started my internship at Cisco in our Raleigh, North Carolina offices. Of course, I was terrified. New company. New experience. New city. What if I didn’t fit in? What if it wasn’t what I hoped for? What if this city wasn’t for me?

What kept me going was this – I was about to start my dream career. Nothing could stop me. And I can tell you today that this has been an amazing experience so far!

During summer 2018, I will be analyzing data, and recommending new strategies for the next fiscal year. Yes! Me! A Cisco Intern will be offering suggestions based on my findings to help make a larger impact for the future of this company.

Challenge accepted!

My first week at Cisco felt like a new world – but one I was ready to embrace and explore. The environment, the culture – definitely #LoveWhereYouWork – it’s all real. What you see on the @WeAreCisco social media pages or here on the Life at Cisco blog – it’s the authentic, REAL stories of Cisco employees.

So what have I learned in these three weeks? Here’s the 3 things I’ved loved most so far at Cisco:

Collaborating: Cisco’s priority is to make sure you #LoveWhereYouWork, and the networking opportunities are endless. I was very excited to meet my Industries Marketing team and get to know my manager. She set up bi-weekly one on one’s with me to recognize my strengths and improve my weaknesses, catch up with my intern experience and recommend new individuals to meet with.  I was also “assigned” a buddy, but in reality, it felt as if we had both picked each other. My buddy, Ashley, is a fellow Florida Gator (Go Gators!) and is part of the Enterprise Marketing team. She has done everything possible to welcome me to the family.

In addition, to all of this (believe it, there’s more!) I was given the opportunity to join a variety of networks: Conexión, Early in Career and Women’s University Cisco Circle. It is through these teams that I have developed meaningful relationships and mentors that will assist in my success at Cisco.

Absorbing: I am definitely a walking sponge and hope to learn as much as possible from every experience I have during my internship. From any Cisconian, my goal has been to understand, “Why Cisco?” (Everyone seems to have their own personal story on why they chose to work at Cisco!) From every training, I try to understand what the go future opportunities are. From every meeting, I always strive to keep up with every new Cisco acronym. (And luckily seasoned Cisconians are here to help with that too!)

Cisco is all about expanding the employee’s knowledge about our innovations through companywide meetings such as Cisco Beat and industry wide show cases like Cisco Live. Everywhere you turn, there’s an opportunity to learn – and grow!

Having Fun: Not only have I learned so much already, but I am definitely having so much fun and enjoying my experience as an intern. Every Tuesday & Thursday the marketing department brings in food (who doesn’t love food, come on) and I had the best BBQ lunch during one of these meals! Additionally, our team was part of the Durham Food Bank for our Summer of Giving Back event!

I am very thankful for this opportunity not only because it’s Cisco, but because of the amazing intern group I am surrounded by. These individuals are like no other, from assisting in any type of project or training to hanging out on the weekends and after work.

I hope all of these relationships surpass the length of our internship and we continue to support each other on the different paths we take. Although, I hope most of all that our roads will lead us right to Cisco!

Want to intern at Cisco? You can! Apply now.


Sabrina Gonzalez

Global Retail Marketing Manager

Marketing and Communications