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Internship Wrap-up

Sam Sleva

It is officially my last week as a Walker Sands intern. While I am excited about the future, I can’t help but reflect on my experience with this company and the tools I have learned. When I began the internship, I had an idea of what to expect – an introduction to the ins and outs of the PR world and a view into the real-life practice of the topics I have been studying for four years.

I am happy to say that this experience has been more meaningful than my expectations of what an internship should be. I wrote in my introduction post that I was thrown immediately into the mix and that I felt welcomed and challenged in this position. This support has only grown as I have continued throughout my time here. I have been given great opportunities to develop my own pitching, writing, and research skills. My supervisor, Lauren, has been helpful in providing constructive feedback along the way and I have felt myself improve by learning the challenging language of business technology in order to frame my work to speak to professionals in this field.

Here are some of the most important things I have learned and some advice for interns in the future:

  • Begin the internship with goals that you hope to achieve

This is important in order to measure improvement throughout the job, and it helps to put into perspective what you truly want to get out of the position. Personally, I wanted to learn the basic practices involved in a working in a PR company to ultimately determine where I fit in this industry and determine if this was something I was interested in continuing in the future.

  • Benchmark your progress

It is important to identify improvement along the way by compiling a list of tasks you have completed, things you do well, and things you can improve upon.  A meeting with your supervisor every now and then can provide an accurate perspective on your progress.

  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions

It can be difficult to admit that you don’t know how to do something, but when you enter into a new position, it is impossible to come in knowing everything you will need to know to succeed. While it is important to figure things out on your own when possible, asking questions on the best way to accomplish a task will save time in the long run rather than having to re-do work because you completed it incorrectly the first time.

  • Welcome constructive criticism

The best way to grow is to take the feedback you receive and look at it as a way to improve. I had trouble finding ways to send engaging pitches, so Lauren gave me some ideas on how to improve and I made that my main goal for the end of the internship.

I have learned these points and more over the past three months, and while I will be moving on to other opportunities after graduation, I will continue to value the skills I have learned at Walker Sands and the people who have welcomed me into this company. Thank you to all of the wonderful people who have made an impact on both my personal and professional life. I have learned invaluable skills that will guide me as I continue on in the future!