Key Insights from Life as a PR Intern

Make sure your internship is more than just being an errand boy

Social media, AP style, never tell a lie: these basic PR rules and guidelines have been drilled into my head since I began my quest for a bachelor’s degree in the fall of 2008.

I’ve taken classes on presentation making, layout, entertainment, crisis management, etc. You name it, I’ve learned it.

After two internships (working at the media relations department at my school for minimum wage, and curently in the PR department of a local health practice ), I’ve also learned that the basic tools taught in the classroom would not be as beneficial without practicing them in an internship setting.

The biggest benefit I’ve gained from being an intern is the confidence I feel I now have. which is needed to become a successful PR professional. I no longer hesitate and question myself on assignments. Instead I take them head-on, trusting that I have the skills necessary to complete the task. I understand that most criticism is constructive criticism, and use that criticism to further improve my performance.

Another benefit I’ve gained from my experiences as an intern is being able to work with multitudes of people in an efficient manner. I’ve done work with other interns, and even vice presidents of companies. I’ve learned to treat everyone equally, and not be fearful to work with someone in a higher position than myself.

Through interning, I’ve experienced such events as naming ceremonies, press conferences, executive-level meetings and commercial shoots. I’ve become such a well-rounded PR professional, that I feel very confident that I am marketable to be hired.

This experience has prepared me to step into the real world once I graduate and be fully prepared to enter the PR workforce. I recommend that every PR student has as many internships as possible. Any and all experiences necessary, good and bad, can be gained through interning.

About the Author
Christina Starr is a senior at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. She will graduate in December with a bachelor’s degree in journalism with a concentration in public relations. Connect with her on LinkedIn or Twitter via @c_c_starr.

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4 comments on “Key Insights from Life as a PR Intern

  1. I really believe that my college PR classes don’t mean as much until they are practiced, great article, thank you!

  2. I agree, my real-world experiences are not only giving me practice and confidence, but also the validation that I chose the right career path. No matter if something is difficult or tedious, if it’s PR work, I get excited to do it! Thank you!

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