During my senior year at Cal State Bakersfield, I applied for and landed a 90-day Public Relations internship at Providence Strategic Consulting, Inc. My first week at Providence I felt both excited and overwhelmed. I was excited because I was learning so much so quickly and overwhelmed because coming into this position, I lacked confidence about what I was good at and what I could bring to the team. Although I was feeling overwhelmed, I assured myself that everything was going to be fine and reminded myself that internships are made for learning.
Balancing my internship, work and school was an ongoing struggle. My life consisted of going to class, then heading to work immediately after, then driving to my internship and trying to make some time for the gym, too. I was always on the go! I would find myself changing inside the car trying to be prepared for the next part of my day. I would spend time every evening trying to get ready for the next busy day. It was really tough but as time passed I realized I was adjusting and finding a routine in it all.
As the weeks went on I noticed that I became more invested in my internship. I would find myself checking emails at home and taking quick glimpses at the client’s social media pages to see how my posts were doing. I found my internship to be more interesting than my school work, that’s for sure! Who wouldn’t want to create content for social media pages, attend fun events, network with people and play with cool camera equipment?
Being part of the Providence team was my first real professional experience in the field of Public Relations and I could go on and on about the things I have learned. As my internship is coming to its conclusion, it’s good to reflect on the experiences and knowledge I’ve gained these past 3 months. The following are just a few lessons and tips I learned along the way.
Working in this office and learning the procedures has taught me more about teamwork. Providence has taught me how people come together to get things done. In observing everyday events and attending meetings, I saw how they all worked together to achieve their goal and meet the needs of the client. I learned that every team member has their strengths and they each bring something different to the table.
One of the most important lessons I will take away is how important it is to establish responsibilities. Assigning tasks to different team members helps the team work more efficiently and avoid any confusion.
Take detailed notes while being trained and when receiving instruction. You will be happy you have those notes to refer to when you have no supervision but need help!
My professors weren’t lying when they said there are no stupid questions. If I didn’t ask the questions I never would have gotten the answers I needed. I made sure to ask A LOT of questions. Sometimes I felt like I was bothering my supervisors, but the Providence team was so nice and wanted me to succeed, so asking questions wasn’t as big of a deal as I thought it would be.
Explore your Interests
The more you learn, the more you develop your interests. I personally learned so much about myself during this internship experience. As I got familiar with all new marketing software such as Canva (design) and HeyOrca (social media management), I realized how interested I am in marketing. I loved creating content for our social media outlets. I am always searching the web for inspiration and how I can further improve my newfound marketing skills.
Internship opportunities are special learning experiences that help you grow. I have enjoyed all aspects of my time spent at Providence. With these newly acquired skills, I am more confident about what I want to do and where I want to begin my career after graduation. I would like to thank everyone in the office for making me feel so welcomed and for teaching me so many things. After this internship, I feel ready for whatever comes next on my journey!