Sitting in a dry and hot valley in the northern reaches of the Sonoran Desert, it seems that a city like Phoenix shouldn't exist given its lack of water and forbidding summer temperatures that push well above one hundred degrees Fahrenheit on most days.
However, modern engineering and a desire to escape cold and dark winters further north have fuelled its growth in the modern era, reaching a metro population of over 4.3 million in 2010. Believe it or not, agriculture used to be a thriving industry here, using extensive irrigation canals and abundant, untapped aquifers beneath the city to supplement the area's inadequate rainfall.
Today, real estate, manufacturing and finance drive Phoenix's economy forward, which continues to thrive due to its favorable weather throughout much of year.
What’s Phoenix like?
Despite being in a mountain valley, the topography of much of the Phoenix area is flat, making it easy to traverse via bike, though it might be a tall order in summer, as temperatures above 100 degrees Fahrenheit and high humidity make any sort of physical exertion unbearable.
While there is an extensive bus system in the Phoenix areas that branches out to all the major suburbs, it is highly advisable to seek out accommodation near the 20 mile long METRO light rail line instead, as most bus stops in Phoenix lack canopies to protect you from the harsh sun.
If you do make use of the bus during your time here, buy a good sun umbrella, and bring plenty of drinking water with you during your commute. If your employer has more than fifty employees though, make use of their rideshare program, as all companies of this size are required by law to promote them within their businesses.
By participating in a carpool, you can wait to be picked up within the air conditioned bliss of your house or apartment instead of melting into a puddle of sweat on the sidewalk waiting for your express bus on a hot summer morning.
As you might have figured by now, it gets hot in Phoenix in the summer, with average daytime highs averaging at or above 100 degrees Fahrenheit from June through September. What you might not realize is that night time is just as stifling, as the pavement releases heat at night slowly, keeping temperatures in the 80's and 90's at night through much of the season.
While you will spend much of your free time huddled within air conditioned malls and your house during this time, the other eight months of the year is when this city really shines. From October through to April, the weather is divine, with highs in the 70's and 80's with only a handful of rainy days along the way, making for excellent trekking conditions in the mountains that surround the entire area..
The Phoenix economy is led by real estate, which has rebounded nicely after tanking hard in the Great Recession, but it also has a number of prominent companies located in its Central Business District, which include the likes of Petsmart, U-HAUL, American Express and Best Western. The United States Air Force also has a presence in the city, as Luke Air Force Base is located on the area's western fringe.
What kinds of internships are available in Phoenix?
Being one of the biggest pet supply companies in the world, Petsmart has numerous opportunities available for those looking start a corporate career in the retailing industry. This company seeks out those looking to get involved in Supply Chain Management, Product Development and Finance, among other positions.
AMEX also seeks interns to work in its Phoenix offices during the summer months, with many placements from Risk Management to Consulting open to applicants prepared to make a difference in their operations.
How to find internships in Phoenix
While those with strong creativity and analytical skills will fare well in a position with a company like Petsmart, it goes without saying that those have an active interest in animals will have a better chance of getting on with them.
If you didn't grow up with a furbaby or two, volunteer at the local animal shelter and make some four-legged friends. This way, you won't have an awkward moment when the inevitable pet-related questions come up in your interview.
If you seek to get on with AMEX, get familiar with concepts related to credit, as you will likely be promoting them during your time here. By getting well versed in the current hot topics in the field of personal finance, you will appear more relevant to interviewers, as they will be more apt to hire people that understand their customer's needs than those that are clueless about basic concepts like compounding interest rates.