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Partnering with Cristo-Rey

More than a decade ago, we at C+R challenged ourselves with these questions, “How can C+R make a difference in the community?  How do we, as a corporate family, give back?” With that, we started a variety of corporate social responsibility initiatives that are still going strong to this day.

One of our more recent partnerships was formed in the summer of 2017 and is with the Cristo-Rey Work Study Program. The program serves high school students in Chicago’s economically-challenged Pilsen and Austin neighborhoods and provides an opportunity for those students to work in a professional, corporate environment. Many of these students have never set foot in a Chicago high-rise or ventured out of their neighborhoods, although they’ve lived in the city all their lives. C+R brought in a high school senior, Makiah, to introduce her to the field of market research and to expose her to as many aspects of what we do here at C+R as possible.

Without companies like C+R Research, there is no Cristo-Rey...not to mention, the opportunity of the business partner to develop your own future workforce! The fact that your student has already mentioned she is interested in market research suggests that C+R has done a great job in involving her. She otherwise would have no idea about this industry.

Lillie Sellers, Director of Corporate Relations, Work Study Program

We were hopeful that Makiah’s experience as our first high school intern would be perceived as a positive one. As she prepares now to enter college, the success of this endeavor is best demonstrated by sharing Makiah’s own words about her time here at C+R: 

makiah head shot

August 28, 2017, I began my internship at C+R Research, and before my first day, I received presentations on the various fields involved in  Market Research. Immediately I became intrigued with the company offerings, and the lengths they go to give their clients accurate data from the research projects they conduct. Quickly, I began to realize how involved everyone was, and how each department comes together to give the client well presented data.

Before C+R Research, I interned at two other companies. What separates C+R from my other internships is the effort my supervisor puts in to make sure I am exposed to every part of the company giving me insight on areas that I may be interested in. Also, I am delighted to work with someone new almost every week, because everyone is truly friendly. At my previous internships I was hesitant to talk and ask questions, here at C+R I have developed better communication skills and have gotten the experience I need to succeed in a mature work environment.

During my C+R time, I have had the opportunity to work with various departments. Thus, I have developed an interest in the qualitative field of marketing. Recently, I shadowed an Analyst in that field where I could receive insight on the many projects they complete, and view an online discussion with respondents in a real research project. I am excited to work with the department more and maybe sit in on a focus group and calls with clients.

Currently I am a senior and will be graduating in June. I plan on attending the University of Illinois In Champaign-Urbana with a major in Women and Gender Studies. I chose this major because I have always been eager to really learn about different cultures and societies. Also, this major is very broad and will be helpful in my analyzing skills which is fitting for me because I am a very deep thinker. Although I am not set on what career path to take, C+R has been helpful in leading me in the right direction.

Every week is an opportunity for me to learn more and grow, which I have done throughout the year. I look forward to coming each week. Even though my internship will be ending, I have learned skills that will be helpful throughout college and future jobs.

I would like to thank everyone at C+R for this wonderful experience.

This experience has been a rewarding one for us as well, Makiah.  We wish you the best as you embark on your college career!