Internship Spotlight: Nathan Dee, The Home Depot

Nathan in a Home Depot apron.

Nathan Dee BSBA ‘24 (Accounting and Management Information Systems) was a Pricing Analyst at The Home Depot in Atlanta, Georgia.

What was the process for getting this internship, job, or summer experience?

My process for getting this internship was applying internally since I had already worked for THD for about 5 years in the store. My store manager came up to me one day with an exciting offer to apply to the summer internship program that is renowned as the #1 internship in retail and consumer products, so I applied. The application process took about 4-5 months to hear back about potential interviews. The interview process was a 30-45 minute interview in front of a panel. After I had interviewed, my recruiter informed me that I was chosen for the position out of ~700 candidates, and 5 interviewees.

What was a typical day like?

A typical day as a pricing analyst consisted of checking in with my mentor at the beginning of the day to go over the game plan and strategy. After that, I would pull the current data from our Tableau workbooks to begin analysis in Excel. I would perform consistent analysis and look at different sources of opportunity such as margin, cost, and price, and I would compare these between distributors and their branches or markets.

What was your favorite part of the experience?

My favorite experience was getting to present the project that I had worked so hard on for 11 weeks to upper-level management. It was a 5-minute long presentation that consisted of discussing my project overview, results, and next steps, and it was a great opportunity to not only show my hard work but listen to the other intern's summer projects and what they accomplished.

If you worked on a big project, please describe it below:

This past summer, I had a project that was part of a much larger organizational project, which was focused on analyzing and comparing suppliers within a given class, which happened to be the roofing and gypsum classes. My project was focused on discovering opportunities and areas of improvement for our product margin and finding distributor costing opportunities that we can have them improve upon. My results were very dependent on my delivery of recommendations to the merchandising team as they were the individuals who could approve the recommendations and inform us to what extent we could adjust margins/prices.

What did you find most challenging?

The most challenging aspect of the internship was handling great amounts of data for the entire nation between 4 distributors and making it understandable for when I presented my recommendations. It was very easy to get lost in the data, especially when working with that much, so it was important for me to stay organized with all of my files and continue to improve my analyses every day.

What did you learn?

During the internship, I learned that every recommendation that I have in my career is going to be implemented and this is something that can't get me down, but only push me to work harder. Similarly, I learned that I am never going to be an expert or know everything when coming into a new position, so it's important to continue learning and soak up as much information in the first few weeks as I can.

What advice do you have for other students looking for a similar experience, or advice for future students to be successful?

Never stop learning. This sounds cliche, but once you stop pushing yourself to learn, you will stop growing. Continue looking for new opportunities to try something new, take a new course, or even just reach out to someone for a 30-minute coffee chat to learn about their career or experiences. To be successful, continue challenging yourself and don't be afraid to fail.

How did Eller prepare you for this experience?

Eller prepared me for this experience through the technical knowledge I learned in classes about Excel and Tableau. Additionally, Eller prepared me to apply for this position with classes focusing on interviewing and resumes. I also wouldn't have the presentation skills or collaboration skills necessary for this internship if it wasn't for Eller, or more specifically, my BCOM course.

Did you feel supported by the company or organization you worked with?

The Home Depot culture was unrivaled and my experience was amazing. Throughout the internship, we would often have executive seminars, where C-level executives would take time out of their day to develop our skills and careers. The internship also organized many opportunities for interns to network and connect which was very supportive. Support was also very prevalent during the internship because we would have periodic check-ins with our HR partner to make sure everything was going well for us and we as interns were getting the most out of the internship.