Kevin Ryan ’23

The Williams Club, New York, NY

Over the course of this summer, I have had the immense privilege of working as a Marketing and Membership Intern at the Williams Club based in New York City. The Williams Club, at its core, aims to provide a space for alumni of Williams and the Club’s affiliate schools to reconnect with their respective college community. In a more normal year, the Club will hold in-person programming that ranges from guest panels to cocktail parties to networking events; but, in light of the current pandemic, the Club’s offerings have largely gone remote in the form of Zoomcasts.

The “Parents and Families” webpage that I designed.

My specific tasks were largely centered on managing both the Club’s website and membership databases. Working alongside my supervisor, Dale Riehl ’72, I became quite familiar with the website design tools of Elementor and WordPress and the database makers Jonas and Filemaker. I reorganized several sections of the Club’s site and even added some new ones. For example, I helped design and implement new webpages for parents and family members of undergraduates looking to apply, and one for undergraduate students themselves. This dissemination of relevant information was a crucial part of the marketing aspects of my job, as the focus was on providing easier access to membership information through a more streamlined website. On the database side of things, my major focus was on automating the transfer of membership information from forms on the website to Excel and then to a system in Filemaker.

Working with so many different database and file management systems has certainly helped to hone my technical skills and will prove to be useful regardless of what field I find myself in after graduation. I now feel quite comfortable handling and importing and exporting large amounts of data in a variety of different programs. My understanding of marketing as well has taken a big leap through my internship. Navigating the ins and outs of reopening the Club in response to the pandemic has given me a much greater idea of the processes involved in recruiting new members and working to retain current members.

Having the opportunity to work in an environment where I felt in tune with the Williams community was rewarding in and of itself. Not only was I able to contribute to the Williams environment which has provided me with so many great memories and opportunities already, but I was also able to meet so many different alumni and hear their own stories of their times at the college. As such, this internship was fulfilling in multiple ways, not just a professional development one.

I am incredibly grateful that I had this opportunity, and I am especially thankful for my wonderful supervisor, Dale Riehl, and the Class of 1972 who allowed me to pursue this fulfilling 
internship and learn so much along the way.