Employer Spotlight: Cintas

Intern Bridgette Secrist, on her first day at Cintas.

Cintas is a prominent Fortune 500 company that fosters a familial atmosphere at its NWA location, as per Tanya Hammock, Senior HR Manager, and Bridgette Secrist, Management Trainee Intern and Senior Strategy, Entrepreneurship, and Venture Innovation student in the Sam M. Walton College of Business. The company has ambitious goals and adheres to the principle of working hard and playing hard. They collaborate extensively and frequently, often engaging in informal communication, which underscores their inclusive office culture.

Cintas has been present on the University of Arkansas campus for approximately 21 years and typically hires 2-4 interns every summer for the NWA location in Springdale, AR. Although they only have two interns at this location, Cintas hires hundreds of interns overall. Other Walton students may also be interviewing and interning at other locations in their hometowns.

Bridgette, who interned at Cintas this past summer, expressed that she had never felt more welcomed in a work environment. She talked about how in some experiences, her nerves never went away after starting, but at Cintas, within her second or third day, she already felt like she was part of the company and part of the family. According to Bridgette, “There’s so much support that goes on in our location that learning and growing was easy for me.” This support, she believes, not only helped her personal and academic growth but also encouraged her to apply for the MTP (Management Trainee) program, and she is delighted to have been accepted. She feels that there is much more she can learn about herself and Cintas in the next several years. What she particularly found comforting was that she was given tasks and responsibilities that had a visible impact, similar to those of upper management in the office.

When asking about any advice they would give to students interested in seeking internships or full-time positions with Cintas, Tanya said “I cannot overstate the importance of good preparation for interviews.” Preparation includes knowing what questions they want to ask and also what they consider important. Bridgette encourages students to set clear, achievable goals for themselves, even if they start small. These goals can pertain to their internship or the duration they plan to spend at their job, providing a tangible marker for personal growth.

Cintas is a dedicated sponsor of the Walton College, and on Wednesday, November 1st, 2023, they will be featured as “The Company of The Day.” They actively engage with the college community by participating in classroom discussions and presentations. Furthermore, they sponsored the sales competition in the spring, striving to stand out and support the college in various ways.

Cintas values initiative, time management, and strong work ethics in potential employees from the Walton College. Tanya advises students to proactively seek out the next task, manage multiple responsibilities, and meet deadlines. She also emphasizes the importance of open communication when students have personal commitments. Cintas is flexible and supportive when such situations arise, ensuring students’ needs are met.

Management Trainee, Austin Nix, UA grad and Intern (now MT) Michael Ellis, UA and Walton grad at the last Cintas Company of the Day.

What truly sets Cintas apart from other potential employers for interns and college graduates is its commitment to offering unlimited growth opportunities. The CEO’s own journey, starting as a management trainee and advancing through the ranks, exemplifies this. Cintas envisions a future of substantial growth, aiming to double its size in nine years, and they actively seek individuals to help achieve these objectives. The potential for career advancement at Cintas is boundless.

In summary, Cintas is an exceptional workplace for Walton students. They nurture a family-like environment and genuinely care for their employees. With a focus on unlimited growth opportunities, a strong work ethic, and a supportive work-life balance, Cintas stands out as an employer of choice. Their active involvement with the Walton College further demonstrates their commitment to their partnership with the academic community.

Make sure to stop by and chat with Cintas this Wednesday, November 1st, from 1-3 p.m. in the Career Closet, located in Willard J Walker Hall (WJWH) 418.

By Emily Vahlkamp
Emily Vahlkamp