How to Get (and Succeed in) Communications Internships
By: Grace Hallowell, Account Executive
Why Should You Get an Internship?
According to CompareCamp, 56% of post-grads get a full-time job from internship experience. In addition, recent college graduates are much more likely to get hired in their desired field if they have experience in said field. Internships also offer networking and professional development opportunities for students. Overall, internships are incredibly beneficial for post-graduate success.
How to Get an Internship
Getting internships can be a long, hard and confusing process. Many times, you can apply and never hear back from a company. According to a CNBC article from 2018, over half of companies never get back to applicants they reject before interviews. It’s difficult for everyone to get jobs, so don’t be discouraged if the process is difficult. However, there are some ways to make the internship application process easier and more successful.
Firstly, reach out to your network to let them know you’re looking for an internship. Your network doesn’t have to just be people you know from school or your desired field, it can also be your neighbors, friends, family members and community members. Ask around to see if anyone knows of any businesses or local groups looking for help with their communications. You don’t have to intern at an elite firm, you can see if a local business owner is looking for help running their social media for a few months or if a local company has an opening for a marketing or graphic design intern.
Once you’ve put out feelers in your network, start applying. Customize your resume and cover letter to each job description, making sure to emphasize your skills that are mentioned in the job posting. Use the same verbs that the internship posting uses, and try to address your cover letter to the person who will be reading it. Do your research on the company, and make sure to discuss how your skills and values align with theirs. Also, send a thank you letter or email after your interview. It’s polite and keeps you at the forefront of the interviewer’s mind.
How to Succeed in a Communications Internship
After you have obtained your communications internship, you now have to start working at it! New experiences can be intimidating, and it's important to remember that every person at your place of employment was once exactly where you are. All of them had to start somewhere, and they all remember feeling exactly like you feel.
One of the best ways to succeed is to make a good impression. It’s important to be polite and professional. If you’re interacting with someone on a daily or weekly basis, try to remember their name and a few facts about them. If a coworker or a fellow intern has a good idea or does a great job on a project, show your appreciation. Your superiors are more likely to recommend you for future jobs if you are a good person to work with.
Another vital path to success is being curious. Make sure to ask questions about company processes you’re interested in, projects that seem interesting, even industry advice that you may not get in the classroom.
Remember that while internships are important for the future, they don’t set the tone for the rest of your life. Try to enjoy whatever experience you have, and stay open to future experiences!