After years of starring in theater productions like “Rent” and “Romeo and Juliet,” Jackson native Julian Mitchell is stepping into a different spotlight as a summer intern for the Investments team at ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
The Murrah High School graduate explained his fascination with finance traces back to his childhood which grew into a passion for pursuing a career that helps marginalized American families build generational wealth.
“When I was six, I opened a savings account,” he laughed. “I was pretty ahead of the curve. Every penny from birthdays and Christmases went toward my savings. My hunger for knowledge grew from there.”
The 20-year-old credits his family for bringing the internship to his attention. His mom, Monica Mitchell, encouraged him to apply through LinkedIn. His grandmother, Eleanor Mitchell, is a longtime St. Jude supporter who jested, “If you don’t get this internship, let me know, and I’ll stop donating.” Fortunately for Mitchell and St. Jude, his grandmother has boosted her contributions since then.
Upon his acceptance, ALSAC offered Mitchell housing at the University of Memphis to allow out-of-state students to experience in-office interactions. So, Mitchell packed his bags to move over 200 miles to Memphis.
As an investments intern, Mitchell is part of a team that assesses how to best steward funds raised by ALSAC, so St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital can advance research and care for children today and those who will need St. Jude in the future worldwide.
At the end of his internship, Mitchell will write and present an extensive research project on emerging forms of investing such as cryptocurrency, which he compared to the Internet boom of the 1990s – back then, it was a new concept that proved to be a valuable opportunity.
While Mitchell considers himself well-versed in finance, he appreciates how his managers, Pat Cox and Andrew Rutter, have challenged him to expand his realm of knowledge in a welcoming environment. “They don’t want you to be perfect,” he said. “They want you to learn.”
Even miles away from home, Mitchell is reminded each day of the lifesaving mission of St. Jude as he sees St. Jude families on campus. “I am contributing to something great and bigger than me,” he said. “My duties have a purpose.”
Mitchell applauds the internship program for pushing him to grow both professionally and personally. For students interested in gaining valuable work experience while using their skills to support the St. Jude mission, ALSAC’s fall program provides paid internship positions at 10-12 weeks and up to 20 hours per week at its headquarters in Memphis and field offices nationwide.
To apply, visit stjude.org/alsacintern.