Summer Internship Series: Gratitude Railroad

Kathleen Dillon is a rising MBA2 at Stern. Prior to business school, she spent six years as an officer in the Coast Guard and two years working for the New York Mets. At Stern, she serves on the board of the Military Veterans Club and  the Management Consulting Association. Her academic specializations are Global Business and Business Analytics.

NYU Stern’s “Summer Internship Series” sheds lights into Sternies’ internships. Posts are written by rising MBA2s who are currently working at their summer internship.

I’m really enjoying my internship experience so far although it was a bit of a roller coaster to get here. Back in mid-March, I accepted a strategy-focused internship offer with the Philadelphia Flyers. Unfortunately, after the NHL season was suspended due to COVID-19, the Flyers had to cancel their internship program. All that to say that as Stern’s school year came to a close, I was still looking for an internship.

In response to the devastating impacts of COVID-19 throughout the country, Stern created a summer internship program called “SternWorks”. The program was created to give students the opportunity to take on projects with companies, non-profit organizations, and government agencies negatively impacted by the coronavirus. Through SternWorks, I was accepted into a 10-week internship program with Gratitude Railroad, a venture capital and impact investing firm.

Gratitude Railroad’s venture capital arm focuses on investing in startups that are tackling some of society’s most difficult issues. I’ve had the opportunity to do due diligence for potential investments in companies focused on food waste reduction, clean energy, and childhood education. Not only has interacting with these entrepreneurs been incredibly inspiring, but it has also been deeply informative. I was in the military prior to Stern and have very little business experience, so having the opportunity to be exposed to so many different markets and industries has been a huge opportunity for me.

In addition to assisting Gratitude Railroad’s investment team, I’ve also been working with the organization’s Head of Strategic Initiatives on various strategy-focused projects including website revamping, community outreach, and multiple internal process improvements. Despite my internship being virtual, I’ve become close to the others on my team and have had a fantastic experience so far. And it’s only half over!

Please feel free to reach out to me anytime — my email is I’m happy to answer any questions you have about life at Stern!