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How Two Canadian Students Got Personally Hired by Elon Musk

Written by Connor Briggs-Morris

Photo by Paula Gale (CBC)

Two Canadian interns made themselves invaluable to Tesla, and the CEO took notice. Could you do the same?

Mark Comeau from College of the North Atlantic and Matthew Lane from Memorial University of Newfoundland used their internships at Tesla to gain a reputation as professional problem solvers, and now that’s their job titles.

Here’s What Happened

These two engineering students had been working at Tesla’s Gigafactory 1 in Nevada when they saw a problem they thought they could fix. Their next step was to literally crash a meeting with Elon Musk, the famous CEO, to pitch him on the idea, and he bought in.

Their solution worked and they were quickly moved to another factory to fix another problem. Successful again, they had now built up a reputation for good work, leading to Musk personally offering them jobs, telling them “you guys did a good job and you should stay.”

Mark is already working as a “professional problem solver” and Matthew will join him once he completes his summer semester.

So What?

Don’t settle for an internship just as something to fill your free time or to put on your resume. Many internships and entry-level jobs can offer more responsibility and skill-building opportunities than you may expect, but only if you show people that you want them.

Not every company is going to be as forward-thinking as Tesla but it never hurts to look for ways to improve your surroundings. Enthusiasm can be just as valuable as experience in the right situation.

These guys saw an opportunity and they pounced on it. While I can’t exactly recommend you ambush the CEO of your workplace, it worked out for them in this instance. With the short-lived nature of internships, it was better for them to have tried and potentially failed than to have not tried at all.

But isn’t it even better to try and also succeed?

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*Opinions expressed are those of the author, and not necessarily those of Student Life Network or their partners.