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Capital One associate Khala stands in front of a yellow background and smiles

Student summit to summer intern

As a tech whiz, Khala knew that going to Delaware State University after high school was the obvious choice. The school had a strong computer science program, it wasn’t too close or far from home and it offered her a partial tuition scholarship.

Once Khala started at Delaware State University, she heard about Capital One donating its riverfront facility to the school in 2021. She was inspired by the partnership and began taking advantage of the offerings Capital One had available to students, including a summit where she had one-on-one time with company leaders to learn about consulting, analysis and design thinking. That same semester, Khala successfully applied to be a Capital One intern for the summer of 2022.

Capital One is home to many associates who have attended historically Black colleges or universities during their academic years. Many HBCU students and alumni find career growth and a sense of community at Capital One before and after graduating.

That’s why Capital One and Delaware State University partner to expand career opportunities within the company by assigning a dedicated recruiter that works directly with the university to hire graduates. The partnership also offers first years and sophomores access to upskill programs, such as First Gen Focus, a program that supports first-generation college students, and the HBCU Tech Mini-Mester, a two-week coding skills program that prepares students for STEM-focused internships.

It’s through one of these programs that Khala, who’s currently a junior at Delaware State University, first learned about internship opportunities at Capital One. Read more about her experience below.

Did you participate in any Capital One sponsored events or student summits while attending Delaware State University?

I went into the 2022 Diversity Summit for Developing Leaders, which was held virtually at the beginning of the year. We did a coding session at the summit that focused on what I was studying in school—elements of programming, math and analytical skills. What I loved was that it was very fun and diverse. I got to know a lot of different people from different backgrounds. The summit really opened my eyes to the opportunities at Capital One. For the rest of the semester, I was constantly receiving updates on other programs and fun challenges for students to compete in, which kept me really engaged on what Capital One was doing on campus. I knew that my knowledge learned through these programs could be applied elsewhere.

What projects did you work on during your internship?

I worked primarily with Capital One’s Flex Pay. My team was focused on building a two-year vision for Flex Pay. It’s still fairly new, and my team and I split into three different sections. I was put on the team that focused on engagement, and we dove deep into how we retain customers and make sure they’re very engaged and loyal.

What was the highlight of your internship?

I loved getting to be a part of Capital One and being a part of its community. Everyone is so nice and open. At Capital One, associates will do “meet and greets,” to get to know people on other teams. Also building those relationships with other interns through group meetings was a big part of the internship. In the third week, each of us shared an “About Me” presentation so we could get to know each other through fun facts.

Khala, Capital One Tech intern, sits on a blue couch and smiles

How has what you learned at Capital One helped you at school and starting your career after graduation?

This summer, I was immersed in the business side of Capital One. For me, even though I’m studying computer science, this internship taught me to look beyond just computer science and coding, and dig deeper. Even though I want to pursue a career on the tech side eventually, my internship made me understand how to not just look at the surface-level. For example, being on the business side, I now know how to think about how to keep clients engaged, but also ensure they’re secured through coding products.

What advice would you give to students at HBCUs who want to pursue career opportunities with Capital One?

Go for it! For Capital One, I had three interviews, and even did a recording of myself. I realized either you get the internship or you don’t. Even though people worry about feeling hurt if they get rejected, by being at Capital One, I have opened so many doors. I’ve had several recruiters reach out to me with other internship opportunities for next year, and I thank Capital One for opening that door for me.

Find an internship that matches your interests here.

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