By Kabira Barlow
This post is part of the Conference Series, where 2016 PRSSA National Conference attendees from AU PRSSA reflect on the lessons they learned from the conference’s events and panels. Click here for more conference blogs.
From the moment we enter college we are told that internships are the key to success. They help strengthen your resume and show future employers that you have the experience needed for the job in your field. Finding and getting an internship can be nerve-wracking and there’s really no “right” way to get one. But here are some tips from Lauren Berger, founder of InternQueen.com.
Stay in touch with Professional contacts. When you are networking and make a professional connection, it is important to maintain contact, but how do you do that? Lauren offers a few tips. Reach out to your contact within 24 hours of meeting them. This is just to follow-up; tell them how nice it was to meet them and that you enjoyed talking to them. It makes them remember you and shows that you were really interested in what they had to say. Once you’ve contacted them, limit contact to three times a year. Berger suggests contacting them in the Fall, Spring and Summer. This is so you are not “nagging” them but reminding them that you are still interested throughout the year. Don’t ever be afraid to send E-mails and take chances!
Tailor your resume to the internship you are applying to. If you are applying to an internship at a news station, you don’t want to send in a resume detailing the many babysitting positions you have had. Adjust your resume to highlight the skills that are relevant for the position you are applying for. Furthermore, go the extra mile and write a cover letter, even if they do not read it, it shows genuine interest.
Once you get the internship, don’t be afraid to communicate with your supervisor, ask them about what the job entails and remind them of what you want to do. Whether it’s writing, designing, etc., you are there to get experience. Don’t be afraid to take the initiative and tell them what you want (politely of course) to advocate for yourself. The main takeaways I got from this panel were, put yourself out there and don’t be afraid of rejection. “When they say no, you say yes!” be confident and go after what you want.
Lauren Berger runs an internship platform for college students at InternQueen.com and you can find her on all social media at @internqueen.