As told by one of our very own amazing interns, Elizabeth Wall.
One of the most stressful tasks associated with being a college student is getting an internship. Internships provide great networking opportunities, work experience, and perhaps most importantly, a chance to figure out what you want to do post-grad.
Speaking from personal experience, I am currently minoring in business. Two years ago I had taken marketing courses at Penn State, and became eager to gain hands-on experience in the field. After scouring the internet for open positions, I found a great Marketing internship over the summer. I really enjoyed my time working for the company and was grateful for the opportunity. It showed me I wasn’t in love with marketing.
Thanks to that internship, I learned a lot about myself and where I wanted to take my career. Since shifting my focus away from marketing, I recently have taken an interest in public relations. I took some courses this year and found myself resonating with the combination of technical skills and creative skills. Public relations would allow me to express and challenge myself creatively, which I didn’t feel like marketing did. Enter, HJ-PR.
I was determined to get a PR internship for the summer, although I was without a major and any experience in the field. I was struggling to get my foot in the door and be taken seriously. However, one night I was scrolling through internships on LinkedIn and saw a post for a Summer intern at HJ-PR. Immediately the company stood out to me, when I read “We all work very closely together and hold a community belief that no job is too small for anyone”. I submitted my resume and eagerly messaged the job poster, Holly. Three days later, I met with Fernando and was offered the position.
I am grateful that HJ-PR took the opportunity to develop and grow my skill set, and I have found a passion for PR and Influencer Marketing. Since meeting the HJ-PR team, I felt welcomed and trusted to contribute. Some of the work I’ve already done are press releases and media lists. I am also beginning to get hands on with influencers. Everyday I am excited to see what tasks will challenge me creatively or enhance my hard skills like research.
The following tips I have accumulated from my personal experience in acquiring an internship. The first being, don’t get discouraged and keep applying. When using websites like LinkedIn or Glassdoor, it can feel upsetting when you submit a ton of applications for positions and hear nothing back. If you continue to put yourself out there, there will likely be a company or position that will work for you!
My next tip is to reach out to the job poster or an employee on LinkedIn, to express interest in the company and let them know you applied. Making a personal connection can help you stand out, and in my personal experience with HJ-PR, it worked!
My last piece of advice is to be open to different fields. When taking courses in college, it can be hard to know “on paper” if you are going to love a certain career. Internships are an amazing way to try everything and see what you like. Don’t be too picky when looking at a position, you may end up loving it!