The Intern Life

It’s been quite a while since I last posted here. Juggling school, friends, job hunting and part-time work. This leaves little time for anything else. After getting through my corporate communications program, I managed to nail a great internship position at a boutique public relations agency downtown. With the great grades I was getting at school, it was a surefire sign that I was going to succeed in the working world. Because being good in school means you’ll be good in the workplace, right?

Not necessarily.

Jumping from school to the working world can be a huge transition, especially if it’s an internship position. I know I’m not alone when I say I have had moments when I question my own abilities and choice of career.

However, what I do know and what helps keep me grounded is that I do know why I’m here – It’s where I belong.

Internships can be an incredibly humbling experience, but also a time for us to really engage in our future area of expertise and get first-hand experience in the industry. I find myself gaining the essential skills of a public relations practitioner that I had previously not put enough thought into. How should you talk about your client on the phone? How would you appropriately reply to an e-mail? Have you followed up with a contact? How can you communicate your message when you use such flowery language?

Two of the biggest lessons I have learned so far:

1. Don’t over think things
2. Ask lots of questions

I’m guilty of compulsively thinking and assessing things down to something that wracks my brain and causes a multitude of restless nights when in the end it was never worth any of it. If something is bothering me, why don’t I just ask about it? I’m lucky to have a supportive network of co-workers that want to help me in this process. When we’re given a task, we need to ask questions to get a better understanding of what needs to be done and move forward. If you hit a road or mental block, ask your supervisor. We start off as an almost blank slate so this is our chance to focus and learn.

It hasn’t been a smooth road for me as an intern. There have been some bumps along the way and I’m sure there may be some more ahead. I believe that how you maneuver these obstacles define the type of professional you are. Face them head-on and move forward. Everyday I am learning something new and as I learn, I know I’m growing into the person I want to be.

Upwards and onwards!

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