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Internship

Another huge way that the communication department helped me out was by providing me with an internship.  During my last semester of college, one of my communication professors received an email from a friend of hers asking if she knew of any students who fit certain qualifications.  She had just started as the director of advancement for a private school, and needed someone with design capability to help her out as an intern.  After reading the qualifications, my professor thought of me and asked me if I was interested in interviewing for the internship.  After some deliberation and asking my family for advice, I was finally convinced it was a good idea and went for it.

I had been worried over whether or not I would be able to juggle the internship with school and the part-time job I was working, but I realized that an internship in the career I was interested in would give me a leg-up and would be worth the extra time and effort.  It wound up being a great decision, for while it did increase my workload, it gave me valuable experience and even led to my first job outside of college when I was asked to work there for awhile after graduation.

What I was asked to do for the internship was re-design their fall newsletter and try to have it not only look more professional and less cluttered, but also fit their brand.  I also had to write some articles for the newsletter and wound up working on updating their graphic standards while I was at it.  The last thing I did was create a holiday video for their annual fund.  It was exciting working on projects for an actual institution and having to problem-solve ways to complete the assignments given to me.  I really enjoyed my internship with St. Paul’s, even though at first I was nervous and had no idea what to expect.

Therefore, my suggestion if you are thinking about working after getting your degree, is to try to get an internship before you graduate.  Look for opportunities posted in the department of your major/minor or go and talk to an adviser in the career center.  It is also a good idea to establish relationships with your school adviser or your other professors, because they may be able to suggest you for an internship as well.  You can also do an internship for college credit and have it count as an elective or one of your requirements to graduate.  An internship is a good idea because it provides practical experience that looks good on your resume, can help you determine if the career you are considering is really what you want to do, and help you network for possible future job opportunities.

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