A year ago, as a sophomore in college, I was sitting in my advisor’s office planning classes for my junior year. It was a struggle for me to choose which classes I wanted to take, let alone consider an internship. To be honest, I barely knew what an internship was, other than something all students were encouraged to take before graduating. But, when my advisor suggested an internship with GRIT Marketing Group, I knew I had to explore the option further. Fast forward a year, and here I am finishing my spring internship with GRIT, and I could not be more grateful for the experience.
Through my hands-on experience at GRIT, I learned more than I would have in any college classroom. I had the opportunity to work with multiple clients on public relations projects. One of my major projects this semester was to draft content for multiple social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. I drafted content for clients in different industries, which ranged from politics to nonprofit organizations. The content for these platforms had to be written with the client’s voice in mind, which was my biggest challenge throughout this internship. As a college student who has an upbeat, friendly tone to their writing, it was difficult to have to consciously think about writing in a more professional, serious tone for certain clients, and is still an area I can improve. However, as a result of this project, the team gave me the opportunity to create a full social media plan for GRIT, which has been implemented. The most valuable experience was to draft press releases and media alerts for a variety of clients. As a public relations major, it is essential that I know how to write these pieces, so the practice I got at GRIT will be beneficial in the future. The main lesson I learned from my projects this semester is that persistence is key in this industry. I would write email pitches and receive no response. I would write a press release and have to make multiple edits. This taught me to be persistent with my work. If I did not hear back from a reporter, I would follow up with them. Or, if I had many edits to make, I would keep fixing them until the piece of writing was perfect. Although it seems frustrating, and at times it was, I learned that to have your client’s voice heard in this industry, you must be persistent!
Although I learned a lot from the hands-on projects that I was assigned, my biggest lessons came from my interviews with GRIT employees. I had the opportunity to interview the team to learn more about their role at the agency, their career path to date and have them offer me advice for my future. It was insightful, and sometimes funny, to hear everyone’s different career paths and how they ended up at GRIT.
The GRIT employee that stood out and influenced me the most this semester was Natonia Samchuck, GRIT’s public relations director. I worked directly with Natonia all semester to learn the ropes of the public relations field. Since this was my first internship, I was nervous that I would mess up or not understand what I was supposed to be doing. But, Natonia was always friendly and patient as I was learning what the agency world is like. Most of all, she was always appreciative of the time and effort that I put into my work, which meant the most to me.
I cannot say enough positive things about my internship and experience with GRIT this past semester. And because I enjoyed my time with this agency so much, I will be working with them again this summer! There is still so much more that I can learn and experience, so I am extremely grateful to have the opportunity to stay with GRIT and become even more prepared for my future career!
Are you interested in learning more about an internship with GRIT? Contact us at [email protected]!