Honors finance student Yan Isayev named Crain's Detroit Business' "Intern of the Year"

Reprinted with permission from Crain's Detroit Business

Intern of the Year: Yan Isayev, 21
By Brett Callwood
Yan Isayev is on internship number four with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. This is some achievement, since the insurer doesn't have a formal intern rotation program.

Isayev was so impressive during his first internship in corporate communications that he was invited back for a second in corporate marketing, then a third in business intelligence and now a fourth in information technology.
Diane Cesarz, manager of information technology and Isayev's supervisor, believes that it's his fearlessness that has made his time with Blue Cross so successful.

“With many interns, they'll see an executive and keep their eyes down,” Cesarz said. “Yan will introduce himself, ask for career advice and suggest a lunch meeting. He builds relationships like that, and certainly makes the most of his program.”

Isayev, who moved to Farmington Hills from the Ukraine in 2000, will graduate from Wayne State University with a bachelor's degree in honors finance in December. His grade point average now stands at 3.85. In his current role, Isayev supports the vice president in charge of the membership and claims processing systems. He provides analytical research to improve processes and gain efficiencies.

Over the course of his four internships with the Blues, he has developed competitive analyses of product development, evaluated and improved internal websites and tools, and led projects to improve recruitment and retention. However, Cesarz believes that his greatest achievement was leading the Employer Research Network program.

“It prepares young employees to go into the business world through knowledge sharing,” Cesarz said. “Yan's positive influence played a massive part in moving the program forward. His leadership skills really shone through.”

Isayev feels that an internship can be as successful as the intern decides to make it. “Some people think that it's up to fate to decide how successful an internship program will be, but in my mind it's 100 percent your own doing,” he said.

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