By Sam Coren
While some college students use summer break as an opportunity for travel and relaxation, others are rolling up their sleeves and reporting for intern duty. For the rest of the summer the StudentAdvisor team will be talking to interns all across the country to get the lowdown on intern life. We're giving the spotlight to one intern a week to tell the world about their internship and what they're learning on the job!
If you haven't done an internship yet, be sure to check back every week for the scoop on different types of internships out there as well as advice on how to set yourself up for success. For this inaugural Internship Spotlight we catch up with one of our fantastic StudentAdvisor bloggers:
Winston-Salem State University
Major and Class Year:
Finance, Class of 2012
Where are you interning?
I’m working for Winston-Salem Monthly magazine, which is a subsidiary of a larger company called Media General, who also owns our local newspaper. It’s a monthly publication that circulates all over the city of Winston-Salem, NC and seeing as how they only take on one intern per semester, a good amount of work gets put on my shoulders.
What's your position there?
My position is described as an editorial intern, consisting of proofing pages of the magazine before they are published, doing research for future issues, and of course writing stories involving some incredibly interesting people.
Can you tell us about a typical day on the job?
I recall one of the busier days at the magazine; it was Friday, but enjoying the weekend was the furthest thing from my mind with the deadline on the other side of the weekend. Slowly approaching panic mode, I stopped at a local coffee shop on the way to my (other) job to get some legwork done and start piecing together sections of the story that were already finished. I failed to get several people to call me back, because after all it was a Friday and who answers their phone on a Friday, right?
With the words from my editor reverberating in head, “HAVE IT TO ME NO LATER THAN MONDAY MORNING,” I buckled down, started feverishly making phone calls, and editing like the wind, because I did not want this hanging over my head all weekend. So eventually, I got the work done (late) and all was well.
At the beginning of the internship I had the option of working from outside the office on a regular basis, and being a true introvert, naturally, I chose this option so this was more of a typical day than you might hear about with other internships.
What have you learned so far during your internship?
One thing that comes to mind is my increased ability to work under pressure. Having multiple stories to write and people to interview by a deadline on top of work and school really keeps me on my toes. There’s nothing like a static deadline to cure that recurring case of procrastination.
One other thing that I’m taking from this internship is how to speak and relate with people to get results. You have to know the right questions to ask to get the answers and results you need to get a story done.
What are your career goals, and how do you think your internship will help you achieve them?
Initially, finance-related aspirations were embedded in my brain, and writing just seemed like a fleeting hobby, soon to give way to the monetary allure of a finance degree. But shortly after I started my internship with the magazine, I realized that this very well could be the inception of a promising career. And even though the money doesn’t exactly roll in (in most cases) I’m reminded by my mentors and professors that doing the things that you love to do is really what life’s all about.
Calling all interns! Are you spending your summer interning somewhere awesome? We'd love to hear about it! If you'd like to be interviewed for Internship Spotlight, send us a note with your name and where you're interning to email@example.com.