During my three-year Public Relations Advanced Diploma program at Humber College, we were required to complete a 15-week internship in order to graduate.
The process of finding an internship while in school was made easier with an online portal where employers could post opportunities we could apply for. I managed to get an internship at a start-up company and received an honorarium of $100 a month.
However, since the company was small, they didn’t have the funding for me to stay on as a full-time employee. While I was still interning, my supervisor was amazing at reaching out to her contacts to help me find a job.
I also utilized many online tools for my job search, including Twitter, job search engines and email. I emailed as many public relations agencies as I could, briefly explaining my experience and how I could fit in with their company.
During this process, I learned how important it is to customize your cover letter and objective to the specific place you are applying. It’s also crucial to double and triple check for correct names and spelling.
In the end, I saw a posting for a social media internship for an online global publication. I sent an email to the social media manager, which included a brief introduction of myself, my cover letter and my resumé.
I then spoke with her on the phone, and was offered an interview at the Toronto office. Thankfully, I’m a people person and I don’t get shy when it comes to talking about career-related topics. After leaving the interview feeling confident, I was later offered the internship.
I think it’s important to do at least one or two internships before searching for entry-level careers. Internships give you a chance to develop your skills and get a better understanding of the work environments that you enjoy — or don’t enjoy.
Another plus of internships is, depending on the impression you leave and the size of the company, you may be offered a job after your placement.
Where Emily is now
Since I just graduated in June, I’m currently doing a full-time paid internship. I felt this was the best way to go as it would allow me to make a bit of money while also gaining more experience in my field. I plan to further my education sometime in the near future.
TalentEgg, Canada’s online career resource for students and recent grads, wants to hear your Student Voice. Share it at TalentEgg.ca.