Interview with Keegan Lyle: Summer Marketing Internship with FabuLingua, a Seed-Stage Ed-tech Startup

Published on
Dec 7, 2021
Written by
Lawson Kuehnert
Read time
5 min
Category
Interviews

Background:

We were very excited to have the chance recently to catch up with one of our summer 2021 alums, Keegan Lyle, a rising 4th year student at the University of Mississippi. We helped Keegan find a remote marketing internship this past summer at a seed-stage education startup in Texas, Fabulingua. Fabulingua helps kids learn Spanish through a mobile app.

Founded in 2018 by Leslie and Mark Begert, Fabulingua has received almost $1m in seed funding.

The Interview:

Terra

So, Keegan, could you just tell us a little bit about your personal background, where you're from, your school, year in school, just the basics.


Keegan

So I'm from Knoxville, Tennessee, and I got to Ole Miss and I'm majoring in International Studies and Spanish, with focuses in Latin America, Social and cultural identity and Spanish. This will be my last year of school.


Terra

So just in terms of internships this past summer, I'm curious, were you like applying to other internships or you only applied to Terra or how did the application process work for you?


Keegan

I think I started over break looking around at all kinds of internships or just Googling and finding them on LinkedIn like on Handshake or whatever. I think I started over Christmas break. And then I applied in January, February and March. I applied to many internships and then didn't hear back from most of them until I had already started this internship with Fabulingua.


Terra

Wow. I'm hearing from a lot of students that they got ghosted by a lot of companies after applying to internships.


Keegan

Yeah, I applied to a few and then I think I I saw an Instagram ad for Terra. And then I was like, sure, I'll apply!


Terra

So I know we connected you to Mark, the founder at Fabulingua, and helped you get an interview scheduled. And what was the interview process like with them? Did you just talk with Mark directly - do you remember?


Keegan

I talked with Mark and Leslie, the founders, in June and I think we just talked about who I am. Yeah, it was really not super crazy as far as interviews go. And then I think we ran over time and then met again. I had a second interview, but it was kind of a continuation of the first. And then they offered the internship to me!


Terra

Very cool! And could you just tell us a little bit more about Fabulingua, like what they do, what their mission is as a company and then some of the projects or tasks you've been working on with them over the summer.


Keegan

So the founders created this app in 2018. It helps teach kids Spanish through storytelling. The way they do it is called "magical translations". Basically the kids are learning Spanish without realizing they are learning Spanish - they just think they're reading a story. It's very cool.


Terra

So it's like for very young kids?

Keegan

Yeah I think it's targeted at ages zero to 10. Because that's also just the prime time to read and learn the language.

For most of the summer I've been working on developing a blog for them to help improve their SEO. And so I'm still working on that. But right now I have three articles that I will probably go through and edit a little bit. And then, of course, blog articles.

These are focused on how bilingualism improves your brain and how it helps you gain cultural awareness and social skills. And then there's one about cognitive development and its relationship with learning the language. So, yeah, that's a bit of what I've been doing.


Terra

So you have to do a good bit of research around these topics?


Keegan

Yeah, I had to do a good amount of research and writing. And then I've been working on another longer project. It's creating language puzzles for teachers to use and it will be in the school version that they're about to release.


Terra

So these are puzzles to help kids learn Spanish?


Keegan

Yes, like crossword puzzles and word searches. I found a generator for the crossword puzzles, but the word searches, I just figured out how to do it. So that's been kind of a fun little task to do. It's been good to take a break from writing.


Terra

So you're coming up with these puzzles and then the tech team will implement in the app.

Keegan

Yes - each story in the app has a vocabulary list. And then I take those sets of words for them and create puzzles.


Terra

That's great! And in terms of your career interests, has the internship sort of played into or reinforced anything about what you want to do with your career, or is it like, "oh, I'm glad I did the internship, but I'm pretty sure this like is not the type of thing I would want to do long term"?


Keegan

This past year I was thinking a lot about what I'm going to do after school. I've thought about grad school. But if I decide to do more school, I have to study for graduate tests right now. And so for a while, I thought I wanted to do more school. But I think doing this internship has helped me realize that I just want to go straight into the workforce. And not necessarily because of what I'm doing, just because it's helped me realize I like this structure in my day. Just having a job and making money and not worrying about work when I'm done with the day.


"But I think doing this internship has helped me realize that I just want to go straight into the workforce."

Terra

Yeah that makes sense - unlike school where you sort of work all the time.


Keegan

Yeah. Once it's done I can just relax. I can't do that at school. And so yeah. As for the internship work, I have definitely learned a good bit about content marketing, which I didn't know anything about. I'm not sure if I necessarily want to do that. But if there's an opportunity to do something like this in a full-time role, I have this under my belt and some background in it.


Terra

I guess the last question I have is just: do you have any advice for other students that, you know, will be looking for internships next summer?


Keegan

Yeah, basically, the biggest advice I would like to pass on to other students is just don't be discouraged by all the rejection because there's, you know, hundreds of people applying to some of these internships. And I know amazing smart people who struggle to find one. And yeah for me, even in February, I was like, should I even keep applying or just go work in like an ice cream store because this is too much. So yeah, just be persistent.

"The biggest advice I would like to pass on to other students is just don't be discouraged by all the rejection because there are hundreds of people applying to these internships."

Terra

Awesome! Thank you so much Keegan!


Keegan

Thank you!

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