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Community-Based Research

Community-based researchers working in vegetable garden.

Community-Based Research

Career Power: Durham Student Lands Internship of a Lifetime at Ontario Power Generation

Business student spends two terms gaining career experience with OPG all while gaining academic credit

Third-year Business Administration student Anna Hetzel has always known that she wanted to pursue a career in enhancing the work of others. Ms. Hetzel has certainly found this with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, completing not one, but two internships as a co-op student working in human performance corporate functional area management at Ontario Power Generation (OPG).

“Business internships are critical to advance your career,” says Ms. Hetzel, reflecting on her experience. “It is the time to enter the workforce, gain training and do all of your learning, because when applying for careers after graduation, organizations expect that you have experience and training. I wanted to take advantage of my time as a student, pursue opportunities and try out different fields of work to see what I enjoy.”


With her work at OPG, Ms. Hetzel has had the chance to immerse herself working in the field of human performance, going out to sites, seeing what goes on at the worker level and how it relates to higher management. Her internship has allowed her to work with groups to understand the human factor in the work that OPG does.

“I always knew I had a passion for helping workers enjoy their job at an organization since I appreciated the people who made a difference to me,” explains Ms. Hetzel. “Improving the quality of work and understanding where front line workers are coming from, highly piques my interest. That's why I was so excited to find out that human performance existed, which literally studies and considers the human element in an organization. From what I've observed, human performance is a profession run by passion, you have to care about people and want to make a difference in the company. These have always been my views, so this field is a perfect fit for me.”

Ms. Hetzel’s studies in the School of Business at Trent University Durham GTA have set her on the path to discover her passion for human performance and taught her to fully take advantage of every career-ready opportunity that comes her way. And her learning does not stop there. Through this internship, Ms. Hetzel has had the unique opportunity to receive training in many different areas including technical training, certifying her as a nuclear technical worker, has obtained a human performance certificate, participated in numerous computer-based courses, website training, and training at the end of April to further build her skillset in the field of human performance. At OPG, Ms. Hetzel has also had the invaluable opportunity to be mentored by leaders in the field and be a mentor to those around her.

“OPG is a learning environment, which is crucial for any successful business. No employee should stay stagnant in their career, but should always be growing and learning and not be ashamed of making mistakes along the way. This is important for the workers to feel supported by their organization and strengthens the trust between the two.”

Posted on April 9, 2019