~~ Guest post by Ashley-Marie Monica, Public Relations major and Lambda Pi Eta member ~~
“Get involved.” How many times do Rowan students hear this in one semester?
As a junior in the communication field, I’m aware of the importance in having a hands-on field experience. I also understand that joining organizations and seeking internships is time consuming and often stressful.
Last year, I wanted to apply for a fall 2011 internship; however, I felt discouraged. I was only going to be a junior while most people have internships during their senior year. I was nervous about everything: the application and interview process, my competition, and if I would have the time for schoolwork. I kept asking myself, “Do I know enough about public relations?” and “Have I taken enough classes in my field?” I wasn’t sure if I was ready to handle real-life responsibilities.
Despite my fears, in May of 2011, I applied for an internship with the Community Affairs Department at WTXF-FOX 29 Television Station in Philadelphia. During my interview with Ameena Ali, Human Resources Director at FOX, the fall 2011 intern position was offered to me!
Most sophomore and junior students are probably thinking, “Why should I do this now? I have my senior year to find an internship.” I believe the best way to prepare for a career is to put yourself in a professional environment. Getting experience early will give you more time to learn new skills and practice them before stepping into the real world.
My current internship with FOX 29 teaches me what to expect in a corporate setting. I’m gaining knowledge and experience I cannot find by sitting in a classroom. Most importantly, I now have confidence in my work and myself as a professional.
I encourage all communication students to get involved in campus organizations and to begin seeking internships. Students, you shouldn’t feel discouraged if you are an underclassmen of any age. Instead, realize you are a determined and goal-driven student looking to prepare yourself for career opportunities. The earlier you start getting involved, the more time you have to gain experience.
I made a successful decision and I encourage all Rowan Communication students to take advantage of the opportunities available to them. Don’t put it off until tomorrow, start your future today.