Sympathizing with her situation, the company said yes and offered her a summer position in the R&D strategy and planning program.
“I am super thankful that Bristol Myers Squibb was willing to pivot last minute to make accommodations for me to participate,” Blum said.
The company’s commitment to its summer internship program and the students it serves was tested as never before this year, but it held strong. As U.S. companies mark National Intern Day, Bristol Myers Squibb is saluting its more than 200 interns and co-ops nationwide for their contributions to the company, and for their flexibility in adjusting to a virtual experience as COVID-19 spread across the U.S.
“This summer offered the interns a unique opportunity to experience our business as we navigate COVID-19,” said Ann Powell, global head of Human Resources. “We have been working in real time to adapt, to remain flexible, innovate and thrive in our new environment. And as members of the BMS team this summer, our interns contributed to our company’s objectives during one of the most interesting times in modern history.”
Continuing the program was an enormous challenge, said Erin Pierpoint, global director of Talent Acquisition. The Bristol Myers Squibb Early Career Team worked all spring to alter the program for interns, looking at external benchmarking data and networking with peer companies about their decisions. The team planned for different scenarios due to the uncertainty of the pandemic and made numerous adjustments to meet the needs of different departments. Technology was also a challenge, with the company’s IT department needing to prepare for how to get more than 200 remote workers up and running in the company’s cloud-based computing environment virtually overnight.
“We felt strongly that cancelling was not an option,” Pierpoint said. “Each year, our interns and co-ops make an important contribution to the company, and ultimately to the patients we serve, while providing us with a valuable talent pool for the future.”