Chumley gets the ultimate learning experience as an intern at BMW

By Lucy McElroy

Hannah Chumley got the ultimate learning experience with a summer internship at the BMW Manufacturing Co.

Chumley wanted an internship to gain experience in mass communications. She was surprised to find that BMW afforded her that opportunity.


Chumley’s internship began in May and ends Aug. 15.

“I started looking online and came across BMW – which would have never seemed like an option to me,” Chumley said. “I was thinking something at a news station or newspaper, but I’m glad I went with BMW to add some diversity to my resume and also to show a different side of what can be done with a degree in mass communications.”

The first day of her internship was like that of any other job. Chumley recalled eight hours of learning expectations and attending presentations about safety and the history of BMW.

“But the second day was far better – the Performance Center took all the interns for a spin on the hot lap in a BMW Motorsport,” Chumley said. “It was definitely an experience I will never forget as we reached speeds as high as 160 miles per hour.”

Chumley performs regular associate tasks and works at least 40 hours a week. Interns create spreadsheets and official documents, revise presentations before they are brought to upper management, coordinate support for BMW Group satisfaction surveys, and assist in all summer shutdown activities.


BMW interns are expected to fulfill the same tasks as regular associates, according to Chumley.

Chumley also works on writing speeches for the company. “Shout out to Gary Mattingly and his help with my speech writing in TV Studio Production,” she said.

BMW Change Management Specialist and supervisor, Kelly Wamsley gave Chumley the highest ratings possible in all areas of evaluation.

“Hannah has provided consistently excellent support,” Wamsley wrote in the evaluation. “She joined the team at a very, very busy time and jumped right in to support in many ways.”

Chumley’s internship overlapped BMW’s late June announcement for an additional $600 million investment and the creation of 1,000 additional jobs, in the Spartanburg County production plant – the world’s largest BMW facility. The third generation of the BMW X3 sports-utility vehicle was also unveiled at that worldwide announcement.

BMW was also celebrating its 25th anniversary since producing its X-brand vehicles at the plant.

Although BMW may not be the first internship that comes to mind for a communications student, Chumley said that she has greatly benefited from her time there this summer.

“This internship has given me a new confidence about what I want to do after college and has shown me that I have what it takes to perform well in the corporate arena,” Chumley said.

Find out more about internships on the university’s website.

Summer interns with Knudt Flor (plant manager in white) in front of the Zentrum museum.

Summer interns pose with BMW President and CEO, Knudt Flor in front of Zentrum Museum.
Photos courtesy of Hannah Chumley