This summer I had the opportunity to intern with the marketing department of Grounds For Sculpture, a nonprofit sculpture park and museum. The park is located in my hometown and I have visited it several times over the years. I was very excited to experience the park from a different perspective.
In addition to memorizing my boss’s coffee and bagel order, I worked on several summer-long projects as well as day-to-day tasks. This was my first internship and I learned a lot about nonprofit communication. I also got a look at what media relations for a nonprofit entails as the park garnered a lot of media attention for a special exhibition. Here are a few things I learned this summer that might help other interns.
Get to know the difference between in-house and agency communication. My previous public relations experience was in an agency setting. This summer I got a firsthand look at how in-house communication differs. Interning in-house emphasized how essential communication is for every level of an organization. In an agency, a public relations professional may have contact with a few point people while an in-house professional has more direct contact with all departments of an organization. It is too soon to tell which path I prefer, but knowing the differences between in-house and agency will definitely help me plan for my next internship.
Bring all your skills to the table (even the unconventional ones). I’ve never studied photography formally but I’ve been a hobby photographer for years. I mentioned this in passing to my boss and she saw a way to apply this to a project she had wanted to do for a while. If you think you have a hidden or unconventional skill that you could apply to your internship, mention it. Your boss might have a use for it.
Learn how to juggle multiple things at once. This summer put my multitasking and time management skills to the test. I had several projects that I was expected to make progress on throughout the summer as well as manage tasks that popped up periodically. I proved that I could handle several responsibilities at once, collecting interviews, entering event listings and editing press releases. While a polished finished product is essential, a project isn’t just about the outcome but also about how efficiently you complete it. Being able to manage time well is essential for a successful internship.
I was fortunate to spend my summer with a group of very nice people in a rather unconventional workplace. Not many interns had a chance to explore artwork in a beautiful setting and see peacocks while driving into work. I’ve always had a passion for art and I couldn’t be happier to have found an internship that combined this passion with practical communication experience.
Whether you’re looking for a way to dive into the PR world or just a way to get involved at BU, becoming a member of our PRSSA chapter is a fantastic opportunity to take advantage of. Why should you join BUPRSSA? Keep reading and find out everything we have to offer!
What is BUPRSSA?
We are very lucky at Boston University to have a great chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. Every week at our chapter meeting, we meet a professional from the area, listen to their experiences with the PR industry, and get the opportunity to ask them any questions we might have. This is a great opportunity to make connections and learn more about different career options that are out there after graduation. These professionals come from every area, from agencies to smaller non-profits to companies that do their PR in-house. From time to time there are also special member benefits such as opportunities to meet chapters from other schools, attend networking events, and apply for scholarships. Once you become a member, you’ll also gain access to the national PRSSA Job Center and Internship Center where more job and internship opportunities are available.
How can I get more involved?
If you want to do more than just attend these weekly meetings, we have a few committees that you can join! If you’re interested in digital content creation, you can join the digital media team. Team members write and edit blog posts, learn how to look at analytics, keep our Pinterest up and running, and work together to come up with interesting and engaging content ideas! Another great group to join is Unleashed PR, our chapter’s PR Agency. Joining Unleashed is a great opportunity to learn first hand what it’s like to work for an agency. You’ll be placed into a group and assigned a client, then groups will work together to create and execute a PR plan for their client. Our third big committee is the planning committee for our conference. For several years, BU had hosted a regional PRSSA Conference, and we need help making sure it all runs smoothly! In this committee you’ll get great experience planning a large conference and making sure everything runs smoothly.
Wait, what is this conference all about?
For the past few years, BU has been lucky to be chosen to host a regional PRSSA conference. The conference takes place at a site on campus and anyone can register for it! It’s a great opportunity to hear great speakers from different companies and connect with professionals and students from all over the country. More information about the event will be available as the year progresses!
That’s a lot. Is all of this mandatory?
Nothing about BUPRSSA is mandatory! Once you become a member, these opportunities are open to you, but you can pick what you want to participate in. While we encourage our members to attend all the weekly meetings and get involved, it’s no problem if you can’t attend every week. Everyone has different schedules and we understand that sometimes it’s hard to make it to every event. Our goal is to provide as many opportunities as we can and hope that our members take advantage of as many as they can.
Great! How do I sign up?
Come to our first chapter meeting! We’ll be meeting in SAR 101 on September 11 at 5pm. This first meeting is simply informational. You’ll hear about membership fees and about everything PRSSA has to offer, as well as meet the executive board and many current members. It’s a great time to ask us any questions you have! If you’re not sure that PRSSA is right for you, this is a great chance to get a better feel for what the club is all about.
Please feel free to reach out to any of our Executive Board members if you have any immediate questions! All of our contact information can be found under the “About” page of the website.
Hope to see you all at the first meeting!
On February 15th, Boston University PRSSA hosted its eighth annual Regional Conference, PR Advanced #FuelTheFuture. The day was filled with keynote speakers, breakout sessions, a competition workshop and lots of networking. Though the day cannot be done enough justice, Boston University film student, Emily Sheehan, captured and complied the events throughout the day into one short, recap video.
For those of you who couldn’t make it and wish you did, or for those of you want to reminisce on what a great time you had, you can check out how it went by watching below or clicking here.