Let’s face it, being an intern can be hard. The people that you work with, whether it be your boss or your general team members, may think you know everything or nothing all at once. The extra stress of being a full time student does not make the process feel any easier. What I’m getting at here is that there IS a formula to getting the most out of your internship — let’s see if I’ve gotten the recipe right. 

Have an Intern Cohort 

It can be hard to be the only intern in the room. In order to truly gain as much as you can from your experience, you have to have people your age you can talk to. I have found that forming relationships with people interning in my major has done wonders! These people are often who I confide in when I may be unsure of my work as an intern, or if I just need a second opinion from someone on a similar level as me. Find these people, they will save you some stress. 

Communicate with Leadership 

This is much easier said than done, but communication goes a long way. Identifying what you need and discussing it with higher-ups is key! It’s easy to wish that you were in a more permanent position so you didn’t have to have the constant internal battle of wondering if you’re doing enough. Talk with as many people as you can, as much as you can, in order to soak up all you can now! Having 1:1’s with leadership, having internal check-ins with your teammates and frequently checking in on one another on a personal level goes a long way. The internship isn’t just for a grade, it’s for your future!

Write Often 

It’s hard to find the time to write when you do it so often for a grade. Writing for a grade is useful, yes, but it’s important to make sure you write outside of the classroom as well. Write a lot and write for a variety of subjects and outlets. Diversifying your skill set will be useful in the long run. Employers are looking for a jack of all trades these days, so make yourself that candidate! It’s important to know the things that you’re good at, while also being able to do more than your typical work you’re used to. 

Be Authentically You

Cliche, I know. BUT no one wants to work with a cookie cutter thinker. Think as outside or inside the box as you can. There’s no harm in being yourself and I’ve found it’s actually helpful to do just this. If you’re quirky, be quirky, if you’re not everyone’s cup of tea, own that and use it strategically. It’s okay not to be the same version of public relations professional that everyone else is. Be you and look good while doing so!

We’ve discussed a lot — digest it, ruminate over it, and think about how you’re showing up to your next internship. Not only are these tips saving my life, they’re helping me find my workplace voice. Get into it!

About the Author:

Lauren Stitt is a senior studying Advertising & Public Relations with an emphasis in public relations. Lauren serves as the COO (Chief Operations Officer) for GrandPR. Lauren currently serves as a public relations intern at 8ThirtyFour Integrated Communications and hopes to graduate in the fall of 2022 and start working within the creative aspects of the public relations field in the winter of 2023!