Real World Context

Jesse MacDonald '18 uses classwork to augment internship

MBS student Jesse MacDonald ’18 put his business training to good use last summer during an internship with Mechanics Savings Bank in Auburn.

Using what he learned from his management information systems (MIS) classes and his marketing classes, he assisted the bank with a variety of projects.

“The internship helped me put what I learned in school within the context of the real world,” says the marketing major who grew up in Gray, Maine.

Thanks to MIS professor Matt Graham’s classes, MacDonald was able to conduct data research and use competitive benchmarking tools to compare the bank’s interest rates and services to those of other community banks. And, because his MIS classes had included discussions about cyber security and disaster recovery, he understood the technology infrastructure at the bank and was able to participate in conversations about the policies and procedures used to keep personal and financial information secure.

Using skills he learned in executive in residence Shawn McKenna’s marketing class, MacDonald helped create public awareness about the bank. He participated in a social media initiative in which he posted news on Facebook about the bank partnering with local organizations and businesses to sponsor community events.

“From my marketing class I know how important public perception is for a business,” MacDonald says. “When people see on Facebook that Mechanics is involved in community outreach, it can make a big difference in how they view the bank.”

An amateur photographer who recently started his own business, JM Photography (, MacDonald also used his marketing skills to create a branding campaign with photos he shot of historic and picturesque bridges in the bank’s four locations, Lewiston, Auburn, Brunswick and Windham. The photos have appeared in one community publication and likely will be used in other written material.

“Mechanics wanted to tie its brand with something its four locations had in common,” he says. “After doing some research we found that each region had a bridge, so we built off that.”

He also started a Meet your Banker campaign in which he took photos of employees which will be posted on Facebook along with information about each person.

“Community banks take pride in getting to know their customers; we thought it was just as important for customers to get to know us as well.”