internships

I Am Weak. (And You Are, Too, Honey)

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his explanation

question pour un speed dating Ben & Jerry’s. The Real Housewives of New Jersey. Tumblr. What do all of these things have in common?

continue reading this They all strike me and strip me down to the floor. They suck the energy out of me – and I let them do so. Simply put, they are my weaknesses.

website here Okay, so they aren’t that bad, but they aren’t completely good, either. The good thing is that it’s easy for me to point out what I naturally cling to. However, in a business environment, it’s not as easy of a question to answer.

social awkwardness dating This past winter, I had an interview for an internship at a website I would’ve given up all three of those weaknesses for; a website that I looked up to, both in personal interest and in the future of my career. I knew this was an interview I had to be prepared for. It was a competitive internship position – paid, even – that many, many kids were on the prowl for.

single alleinerziehend partnersuche kostenlos The conversation was off to a good start. Much like a normal interview, I talked about my interest in the company, the work I was doing at the time, all those typical points. But it took a turn when I was met with the question “What is your biggest weakness?”

http://socialocho.com/maria/6529 Here, I couldn’t say that I bowed down to ice cream and Bravo. But being the prepared young professional I am, I did have an answer rehearsed. Sadly, it was one of my poorer decisions.

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site de rencontre sГ©rieux pour agriculteur I had heard once in a TV show where a character was giving interview advice to someone else (or someone might’ve actually told this to me, but I’m sort of glad I can’t remember now), and something I took out of it was if an interviewer asked for your biggest weakness to give it a positive spin. For example, “I pay too much attention to detail!” “I’m a perfectionist!”

That was exactly what I said in this live questioning and the look on my interviewer’s face was priceless. She smiled and I could see her bounce like she was trying to cover up a chuckle. As soon as I saw that, I felt like choking and tried to justify myself. It wasn’t so bad, but it definitely wasn’t one of my proud moments.

Currently, I’m reading #GIRLBOSS, and NastyGal CEO Sophia Amoruso only confirms what I did was totally stupid. She says that if you give an answer like the ones above (I really just would rather not repeat them), you’re not being completely honest with yourself. It’s almost like you’re trying to disguise an actual problem. “A #GIRLBOSS knows where she excels and where she could use some work,” she explains, “so get to know yourself and your weaknesses.”

Ms. Amoruso hits it right on the nail. After that experience, I really pinned down what my faults were in a business setting. As negative of an activity as it may sound, try to uncover what your problem areas are – and then use that as fuel to improve. The first step to fixing a problem is admitting that you have one. And no, my Ben & Jerry’s addiction is not a problem, as much as my friends, family and Duane Reade cashier may tell me…

Dear HR, Why Don’t You Love Me?

The drama you endured in seventh grade is not completely irrelevant. If anyone has ever said “your experiences shape you as a person” or some cliché bull of the sort, in a way, it’s not far off. Seeing your BFF Katie talk to your crush, Alex, when she obviously knew how much you “like-liked” him was totally not cool, and then finding out he asked her to the Halloween dance instead of you was nothing short of a cut in the gut.

But in one way or another, we’ve been here, at this stage and felt this tinge of emotional pain. The guy you went out with last week doesn’t call you back. Your mom spits out cupcakes you baked for her office party. Your dog doesn’t run to you when you walk in the door. There is nothing more heartbreaking than being told that you aren’t good enough, but it’s exponentially more hurtful when it comes from someone of higher authority – a potential employer.

A hustling and hungry student (ie: me) is all too eager to not have her eyes glued to job boards and edit resume after resume to send to Human Resources departments. The cover letter has been quadruple-checked for spelling errors and address changes and you think, “I’m gonna kill it.” And once you press “Submit,” there is no going back.

This semester, I probably went through this process about 40 or 50 times in total. For those of us who struggle with patience, the anticipation of getting a response from a company that you admire like a fangirl makes you tick. It’s exhilarating to know that you could possibly contribute to a force that has had such influence on your interests and your life, but it’s stressful to have to play the waiting game with HR.

Silence screams in exponential volumes. Companies get applicants for jobs and internships like they’re hosting a One Direction meet and greet – it’s hard to get back to everyone, let alone even skim the applications. I’ve been in this situation and have re-sent and re-re-sent applications to companies, especially the ones that are at the top of my “Dream Careers” list. But still, just because you send once doesn’t mean it’s enough to get a response.

Nothing, however, compares to a rejection notification. There have been instances when I’ve gotten automated email responses within 12 hours of applying that said, “Currently, you don’t fit the qualifications.” Some messages have been more personalized, and while I appreciate being notified, it can be upsetting. You stare at your screen, take a deep breath and think, What do they have that I don’t have?

You see how your questions have come full circle – what does Katie have that you don’t have? What does the lucky applicant who got the job have that you don’t have?

From what I know, you have to keep moving forward. Remain positive. Remain polite. If you’ve spoken to anyone regarding positions and opportunities, don’t lose touch. Hustle and do anything you can to stay in the game. If you’re passionate enough about it, you’ll get what you deserve… And probably a nicer guy than your seventh grade crush.

The Cycle

True or False: Education is meant to be your top priority while in college.

At any other school, that’s true. At FIT, that’s a hard value to keep up, since the nature of the school is to use the resources of NYC to its advantage and get into the workforce immediately. It’s inevitable that you’ll be an intern right from the get-go, or at least a volunteer for NYFW at some point your freshman year. The importance of our schooling gets lost amidst the crazy quest for the best internships and making connections with CEOs at nightclubs.

My freshman year, I, too, fell to this naïve idea and picked up two internships. First-year classes like mass communications and how-to-use-Microsoft-Office were nothing short of boring and I let all the material I should’ve retained fly right over my head.

Enter sophomore year, and the content of the classes began to change. One requirement was a class called Publicity Workshop, where we learned about what publicists do and how to create press kits. Everyone at FIT at some point “wants to work in PR,” and although being a publicist may appear to be a glamorous job, it’s not. Plus, a publicist doesn’t just make celebrities look good – every business, brand, and company needs a publicist.

One class was devoted to event planning. I didn’t realize at the time that one responsibility of publicists, among the many that they have, is to organize an event that a brand wants to have. And they don’t just put it together, they also write up the press release and then send that out to the media.

As tedious as the work is, publicists have to stay composed. I learned that no matter what, when someone from the media is invited to an event and shows up at it, the publicist has to cater to their every. Single. Need. Why? It’s simple: so that they get good press. And that’s publicity. It’s a lot to execute, but it’s all for one reason.

When my internship started at Guest of a Guest in January, I knew that I would be covering events, but that was the extent of it I knew at that point. I started picking up more and more parties to cover and noticed a trend in how I was being treated. Someone would come up to me, tell me the firm they worked for, and then say in uptalk, “Thank you so much for coming! We’re so glad to have you here! Is there anything you need? Are you hungry? Do you want a cocktail menu? Don’t worry, we’ll take care of evvvvverything.”

I realized that what I learned in school about public relations had come full circle with my experience in the media and technically as part of the press. This has been a unique way to learn about public relations. We get invited to events and press releases about parties. PR firms want their events, brands, and sponsors to be written about in the media, and in a good light. What I’m doing here is so crucial to their business, and I had no idea. To return the favor for being so welcoming to me at these events, I pay it forward and write sincere reviews about the events.

The attributes of academia may seem time-consuming and as students in NYC, we may believe that education comes solely from experience. Take it from me – use what you learn and apply it to your internship. It really does come full circle.

Room For Growth

 

I had been warned as an ambitious and daydreaming middle schooler who swore that she would be an anchor for ESPN’s SportsCenter that if I wanted to reach my dream job, I would have to relocate to a small town in Idaho for 12 years after college covering stories on families’ pets for the local weekend news show before getting any sort of “big break.” Sort of like a season 1 of How I Met your Mother Robin Scherbatzky without the luxe Brooklyn apartment and 3000 miles away from any borough of New York.

Even as an overly-optimistic sixth grader clad in braces and Harry Potter-shaped glasses, I kept telling myself two things whenever this caution sign came to my head. 1: I will not end up in Idaho. 2: If I have to go to Idaho to live my dream, I will.

But my naïve optimism could only go such a long way. When I began to pick up production internship opportunities in college, so many of the job descriptions read, “Going on runs, assisting in daily office tasks,” and the like. At the time, all I cared about was the status of having an internship and where I worked. So with any chance I was given, I made sure to take it.

Going into an office and not knowing what you would do that day was an exciting feeling. To know that I wouldn’t be sitting at a blinding cubicle was pleasant and that I would get to run around a bit made me feel useful. No matter what my assigned task was, it was very largely appreciated and I strove to earn the respect of my seniors. However, I knew that I was capable of doing the same tasks as a production assistant. In fact, I was doing the same tasks as a PA, but I wasn’t getting paid.

When I hear about internships my friends are doing now, it seems to be that there are so many lopsided levels. From what I hear, if you’re interning at a small start-up, you’re extremely integrated in the efforts that your company is trying to accomplish. On the other hand, students who get internships at well-known companies are labeled as “The Lucky Ones,” and then what do I hear? They get bitched at all day and they have to tape labels on clothes for 12 hours straight.

How on Earth are we, as students who are paying several prices to intern for these companies, supposed to learn from getting yelled at all day? What is a student supposed to gain from going around asking employees “Is there anything I can do for you?” and the answer is “No,” when really, there’s a huge task list with chores scribbled on it that have yet to be crossed off? If your student intern is studying communications, chances are he or she has learned the ABC’s of press release writing. Let her use her academic skills in the workplace.

And if she messes up? Don’t scold or scare her. We learn from mistakes, but we don’t learn from harshness, yelling, or negativity in general. Teach us. As interns, we are here to learn about our potential careers. Employers: these are our lives and we don’t have time to waste. Take us under your wings with sincerity.