How’d He Do It? Tips From A 2011 MasterCard Canada Intern


This time last year, MasterCard Canada embarked on the first ever “social interview” to find summer interns.

Using an interactive call for submissions through Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and YouTube, they received over 500 applications for just five internship positions!

Well, MasterCard Canada is at it again! They’re hiring five new interns to provide support to the company’s Product, Marketing and PR departments this summer.

“This is a real job leading to real opportunities. It is ‘priceless’ knowing I already have a full-time job before finishing school.” —Stefan Kovacevic, 2011 MasterCard Canada Digital and Sponsorship Marketing Intern

Like last year, they’re using the social interview process, but this year they’re also asking you to include a creative submission that best describes what a cashless society might look like.

Applications are due April 20, but many students have already begun their creative submissions via Facebook, Twitter, tumblr and YouTube videos, so you better get cracking!

If you need some advice on your application, look no further: University of Guelph Marketing Management student Stefan Kovacevic is our resident MasterCard Canada Internship expert!

He was one of the lucky five chosen to be an intern at MasterCard Canada last summer and, due to all of his hard work during the summer internship, was offered the opportunity to work for the company part-time last fall and now full-time as a Co-ordinator of Merchant Marketing while he completes the last semester of his degree.

“The key is to prove yourself and make your mentors at work believe you and your skills are indispensable,” he says. “This is a real job leading to real opportunities. It is ‘priceless’ knowing I already have a full-time job before finishing school.”

So, how did he do it?

Stefan’s MasterCard Canada Internship application

Stefan started his application with a Facebook campaign: “My goal was to generate awareness and support around my internship candidacy, as well as the MasterCard Canada intern program, through social media,” he says.

From there, he made a YouTube video and continued to engage his followers on Facebook. At one point, he polled his followers and asked them this question: What crazy thing do you want to see Stefan go through to prove how much he wants the job?

“As an incentive, I offered to share a video where I’d show my follow-through on the task. In the end, I shaved my head and, in an effort to make it go viral, I made a parody of a popular YouTube channel,” Stefan says.

Within about three weeks, his videos amassed more than 2,000 views, his Facebook page received over 300 likes, and more than 100 people voted in his poll.

Then, in early May, after two interviews with MasterCard Canada, Stefan received the call. The first thing he did? Call his mom. “My parents were very intrigued with everything I was doing to apply for this job, so it was nice to call them and let them know that it was all worth it!”

The second thing? Sleep. “It wasn’t easy sleeping knowing that any day you could get a call saying you got the job,” he says.

Keep reading to find out what the internship was like, plus Stefan’s tips for your application!

Why do you think you were chosen for the MasterCard Canada internship?

Stefan: I made a very strong effort to push my application through social media and make it go viral. I knew any attempt to make it go viral would be a positive one: it increased my chances of getting noticed by MasterCard Canada, but it also made everyone aware of the opportunity and encouraged others to apply.

What was a typical day in your life as a MasterCard Canada intern?

Stefan: I think the beauty of this internship was that every day was different. On the digital side, another intern and I worked very closely with our digital ad agency in New York City, and helped completely revamp the MasterCard Canada website from its old platform into what it looks like today.

This included refreshing the whole website, working with internal stakeholders to validate whether information needed to be updated, getting approvals from the legal department, image selections, and precisely mapping all content to ensure the website worked smoothly.

On the sponsorship and marketing side, I assisted in launching two major marketing campaigns; Stylicity for World MasterCard Fashion Week and Priceless Toronto. I was responsible for co-ordinating all content for the Stylicity campaign and was the main contact between the ad agency that executed it and MasterCard Canada. For Priceless Toronto, I was very grateful to get a lot of face time with some of our partners, including Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and was responsible for generating content for both our sports and attractions categories. It gave me the hands-on experience I craved and allowed me to learn about the business and its marketing function first-hand.

What was your most exciting experience during the internship?

Stefan: The most exciting experience was definitely my trip to New York City to visit our digital ad agency. It was very exciting to visit their office in the heart of Manhattan and present to them. It was a very educational trip because it gave me a great perspective on the differences between a marketing department on the client side and advertising on the agency side.

What’s the most valuable thing you took away from the experience?

Stefan: I learned that the senior management, the whole marketing team and your direct reports are all there to help you. The only way to get the best experience out of this internship is to put the effort in. Never be afraid to ask questions, show that you’re willing to learn and relax in the most hectic situations. You’ll quickly find that everyone in the office here will make you feel at home as soon as you get here so give back, be friendly and network!

What’s your advice for students who are applying to the internship this year?

Stefan: If you want the best hands-on experience, make sure you apply. I hesitated to apply because I knew that hundreds of others would and I thought my chances would be slim. But your chances are great if you’re able to prove that you are the best fit and if you follow the guidelines set out by MasterCard Canada throughout the application process.

I think the most important thing is to make sure you SHARE your creative submission. The average person will avoid sharing their creative submission because they feel they don’t want others to feed off their ideas, but the point of this internship is the opposite. The point is to share your creative submissions, spread the word and make it go viral!

Lastly, if you don’t get the job, don’t be down on yourself. You can turn your creative submission into a case study and add it to your portfolio for your next interview.

MasterCard CanadaClick here to read the full MasterCard Canada internship job description on TalentEgg.

The deadline to apply is Friday, April 20!

About the author

Cassandra Jowett is TalentEgg's Content Manager. She joined the team as a student intern in the summer of 2008, and since then her heart has never really left the Egg Carton. Cassandra is a recent graduate of the Ryerson University School of Journalism, where she earned a Bachelor of Journalism with a focus in writing and editing for newspapers. She has also written and edited for The Globe and Mail, The National Post, t.o.night newspaper and other publications.