What I liked
The internship is a 10 week program. The first and last weeks are spent in Winston-Salem, North Carolina at the RAI Headquarters. There, you learn about the history of the company, tour the tobacco plant, and dive into the products that the company produces. You are there with a lot of other interns from all over the country.
After the first week is over, you are flown out to your internship residence for 8 weeks. I was placed in Sacramento, California. The internship also pays for your housing in a fully furnished apartment and they also give you a company car with a gas card (for both personal and professional work). This was a very dynamic field to work in because California began passing legislation regarding tobacco products which directly affects the company.
It was a very outgoing internship. I was in the field everyday learning about different elements of trade marketing. I worked with territory managers, account managers, and the regional director on a day-to-day basis. I had the opportunity to work with regional executives as well. Working with territory managers was an amazing experience, because I experienced different areas of the Northern California area. They put me up in hotels in areas like Lake Tahoe and Monterey in order to improve my understanding of tourist destinations. Overall, you learn a lot on the job and the company always checks in with you to ensure you are learning and enjoying your internship experience.
Overall the 8 weeks of field work, you are constantly working on a presentation. There are six different topics you get to choose from to give your presentation on. I chose the topic of "transforming tobacco" which dives into the ever changing products of tobacco and nicotine products. The presentation helps give you a better understanding of the tobacco industry and allows you to make your internship experience your own.
The last week you are flown back out to Winston-Salem and wrap up the internship. You have a volunteering day where you get to help a non-profit organization with everyone involved in the internship program. On the last day, you give your presentation to your regional executive team. This is the last thing you do for the company, as afterwords you get to celebrate for the rest of the day with your fellow interns.