News - Finalists Announced for Region's Flagship Internship Awards Program

January 21, 2013 – The Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education (“NOCHE”) and Cleveland Business Connects Magazine (“CBC”) are excited to announce finalists for The Expys, the region’s flagship awards program to honor the best interns, mentors and internship programs in Northeast Ohio.  NOCHE received a record-breaking number of nominations, with almost 300 candidates in seven categories: best intern, best mentor, best new internship, best small company internship, best large company internship, best college advisor and coolest internship. 

The Expys awards luncheon kicks off at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, March 20, 2013, at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Independence, and is open to the public.  Tickets are $35 ($25 for NOCHE member schools and subscribers of CBC Magazine) and may be reserved online at Advance registration is recommended since tickets are expected to sell out prior to the event.

“Internships are integral to Northeast Ohio’s talent development efforts, and we are excited to continue the tradition that we started in 2011 of recognizing excellence in experiential learning,” said NOCHE Executive Director Ann Womer Benjamin.  “The program celebrates student success and employer talent cultivation by highlighting some of the region’s best interns and internship programs.”

A panel of independent judges selected five finalists in each category, and will choose the winners that will be announced live at The Expys luncheon on March 20, 2013.

The finalists in the best intern category are

  • Mayank Saksena (Case Western Reserve University/BioEnterprise, Cleveland),
  • Lauren Halladay (John Carroll University/Center for Families and Children, Cleveland),
  • Jessica Wagner (John Carroll University/LaunchHouse, Shaker Heights),
  • Allison Schulze (John Carroll University/Cleveland Play House, Cleveland), and
  • Jeanne Lee (Lake Erie College/e2b teknologies, Chardon).

The finalists in the best mentor category are

  • Bill Baddour (Senior Director, International Operations, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland),
  • Julie Robie (Managing Attorney, Consumer Law Practice Group, Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, Cleveland),
  • Jenae Caniglia (IT Business Analyst Team Lead, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co, Akron),
  • Anna-Jeannine Herman (Creative Director and Talent Management, Something New Entertainment, Akron), and
  • Laurie Takacs (Director of Supply Chain Transformation, Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co, Akron).

The finalists in the best college advisor category are

  • Dr. Oya Icmeli Tukel (Chair & Professor, Operations and Supply Chain Management, Monte Ahuja College of Business, Cleveland State University),
  • Laura Buckeye (Program Coordinator, Integrated Health Studies Program, College of Education, Health, and Human Services, Kent State University),
  • Adrienne Aguilar (Program Manager, Computer Science and Engineering, University Partnership Lorain County Community College and the University of Toledo),
  • Charlene Jones (Link Program Coordinator, Career Services Center, Cleveland State University), and
  • Thomas Capretta (Assistant Professor and Program Coordinator, Hospitality Management Program, Cuyahoga Community College).

The finalists for best new internship are

  • Improve Consulting and Training Group (Cleveland),
  • Echogen Power Systems (Akron),
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association (Cleveland),
  • Portage Development Board (Ravenna), and
  • DDR Corp. (Beachwood).

The finalists for best large company internship are

  • Eaton Corporation (Cleveland),
  • Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores (Hudson),
  • Hyland Software (Westlake),
  • FirstEnergy (Akron), and
  • Rosetta (Cleveland).

The finalists for best small company internship are

  • Quez Media Marketing (Cleveland),
  • e2b teknologies (Chardon),
  • Greater Cleveland Sports Commission (Cleveland),
  • Improve Consulting and Training Group (Cleveland), and
  • Richter Healthcare Consultants (Twinsburg).

The finalists in the coolest internship category are

  • Cleveland Clinic Center for Autism (Cleveland),
  • Progressive Insurance (Mayfield Village),
  • Dwellworks (Cleveland),
  • Something New Entertainment (Akron), and
  • Cliffs Natural Resources (Cleveland).

The independent judges for 2013 are Patricia Hoyt (President and CEO, Alliance for Working Together Foundation), Marcia Jones (Manager, Career Services, Lorain County Community College), Courtney Keller (Associate Talent Development & Inclusion Analyst, The Timken Company), Antoine Moss, Ph.D. (author, Learn to Intern CEO Style and CEO and Founder of CEO Style Consulting, LLC.), and Molly Vaughan (Student Success Coach and Minister of Culture, St. Martin de Porres High School).

“We are thankful for the time and expertise that our judges contribute to The Expys,” said Womer Benjamin.  “This program would not be possible without their critical involvement.”

NOCHE’s signature regional internship program, NEOintern, connects students, employers and internship opportunities in collaboration with the region’s colleges and universities.  Employers post internship opportunities and students post resumes in NEOintern’s online database for free.  Almost 20,000 students and more than 2,200 employers are registered with NEOintern, and at least 150 open internships are currently available across 16 Northeast Ohio counties.

NOCHE: Connecting business and higher education