By stereotypical college standards, we are all supposed to be living it up on a beach, tanning and drinking our lives away during spring break. While this is true for some college students, many of us spend hours browsing the internet for internships—I’m one of those people. This week has been spent researching companies, re-editing my resume (for the 1,096,789th time), and writing cover letters in hopes of landing the perfect internship.
One question that has been asked at many PRSSA meetings and panels by members is “How do I find internships?” Well, I’m about to help you answer that; below are a few of my own tips when it comes to searching for internships.
- PRSA Detroit — Wayne State University PRSSA has an awesome sponsor chapter in PRSA Detroit. Aside from being comprised of great public relations professionals in the Metro Detroit area, PRSA’s website has a link just for students! Under the student services link you will find a list of Metro Detroit agencies and organizations seeking interns.
- Ask — This is where networking with your peers becomes really important. Talking to a classmate about where they are interning may not only introduce you to a company you may have never heard of, but could give you inside information on what the internship is like and whom to contact if you’re interested. Also, our professors are more than just our instructors, many are retired (or freelance) professionals; they have connections and tools we don’t and could lead us into the right direction.
- Research — Consider what things, companies/organizations and events you’re into and use Google to find out what agency represents them. Most agencies post a list of clients on their website and some clients post press information (sometimes including media kits) so you can some idea of what the company is like.
- My last bit of advice? Keep your eyes peeled — check bulletin boards in the dorm hallway, read the fliers left in restaurants, pick up an alternative paper, collect business cards from professionals. Even if none of these things will be able to offer you your dream public relations internship, they may lead to other opportunities (like the ability to offer PR service for a startup company) and will help you begin to get your name out there.
Alex Washington is the Social Media Director for Wayne State PRSSA.