Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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Summer Interning: What can I expect?

June 9, 2015

By: CJ Riggs, @carla_riggs


For anyone who has never interned before (like myself), you have NO clue what to expect, what you will be asked to do or how to come across as intelligent and knowledgeable. From professional tips, to the sticky situations, I am going to lay it all out for you.

First Nail-Biting Part of Summer Internships: Sending Millions of Applications

Once you decide you’re going to apply to your favorite company, keep in mind that each company looks for something unique. Sending a copy and past resume probably won’t appeal to the directors.

Be sure to customize your resume:

  • Use their language! (key words they’ve used in their application are a good way to trigger interest)
  • Focus on the involvement and experiences that will best market you! (it’s good to include what you do and are involved in, but just be sure to really highlight what you want them to see!)
  • Make it personal! (add in a sentence or a couple of key words that allow your personality and character shine through)

Most important tip: NO COMPANY IS OUT OF REACH!!

  • Don’t be afraid to apply anywhere. No company is too big or too “good”. An internship is a time for learning and growing.

Second Sweaty-Palm Part of Summer Internships: The Waiting Game 

And now, we wait

It can be really tough not to get anxious and overwhelmed if you haven’t heard back by March or April. Do not fear! A lot of employers take their time to get back about interviews, or second interviews.

Tips to staying cool, calm and collected:

  • Make a list and check it twice! Keep a running list of where all you have applied to, when their deadline is, who the contact person is and any information on whether or not they have a time frame for hiring.
  • Follow Up! If there is an organization you are really looking forward to working with, don’t be afraid to send an email to follow up about application status.

Third Pacing Part of Summer Internships: You’ve Got the Job!

Okay, now you can breathe. You have heard back from a company and THEY LOVE YOU! The hardest part is not wanting to pinch yourself back into reality. Your next step is probably a planning session.

Tips to looking and being the best you:

  • Dress for the job you want! Many people know the basics of work-appropriate attire, but what they don’t know is that there is a huge difference between dressing nicely and dressing to make an impression.
  • If the employer has ever seen a picture of you, try to wear that same outfit again, RECOGNITION IS KEY!
  • If you go on a second interview, wear the same thing OR something very similar. Nobody is going to think you’re gross for wearing the same suit.
  • Take extra copies of your resume, work samples and any other material they requested when you applied. (Not always, but sometimes they lose, forget or want to see your material again)
  • Write a ‘Thank You’ note. A little bit goes a long way. If it isn’t possible or appropriate to write a ‘thank you’ note, send an email thanking them for their time and express your excitement about the opportunity to meet with them.

Fourth Nervous Laughter Part of Summer Internships: Your First Day

Meeting new people and introducing yourself a million times is to be expected on your first. You may not remember any of their names, but they will know who you are. Start small and know who you work with and for. These are your VIPs when it comes to workforce family.

Tips to learning it and fitting in:

  • Even if you don’t know how to do something (something that isn’t a life or death situation) learn it and fit in! It is easy to look up information on basically everything. Don’t know how to use Hootsuite, NO PROBLEMO. There is a wonderful site called Dummies.com that will tell you step by step how to automate your tweet sending.
  • Don’t be scared to go to the bathroom or eat lunch. WE ARE ALL HUMAN! Your employer will understand that you need to use the restroom or that you like to eat lunch.
  • Always smile! It is harder for your employer to be mad at you for accidentally printing the same page 300 times instead of 30 if you have those pearly whites showing.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY, don’t be afraid to be yourself.

PaRtner’s Conference 2015

April 21, 2015

By: Jess Carnprobst, @jess_carnprobst


This past Saturday, Melaina Lewis, Allison Evans, Kelsey Miller and I traveled to Columbus for this year’s PaRtner’s Conference at Capital University. After attending last year’s conference at Ohio State, I was excited to see what was in store.

Capital welcomed us with some breakfast foods, juice and coffee, before starting the keynote speaker. Then at 9, we heard from Amanda DeCastro, who is currently working at Resource Ammirati and talked to us about the things we won’t learn in school. She told us to have an elevator speech, learn to speak in public, take big risks, build our online presence wisely, understand that we will fail, become an expert in one thing, listen, find a work/life balance that works for you, master the art of writing and storytelling, bring a pair of flats (this one was for the ladies), you will get hung up on when calling people, don’t burn bridges and lastly my favorite advice, make your passion your paycheck.

In our first breakout session, we chose to attend the “art of the resume” workshop, gaining a professional’s understanding of the resumes we turn in. Here we learned that it’s important to be careful when choosing to create a design heavy resume, because every professional looking at it will have a different opinion. To reiterate on something we’ve learned at OU, they stressed the importance of tailoring resumes to a specific job and finding a way to link the skills gained in a previous position with the job description of the position you’re applying for. Others attended the personal branding workshop, which helped those students gain further understanding to the importance of establishing and maintaining a brand both on and offline.


For session number two, we moved downstairs to learn more about advanced internships, while some stayed upstairs to learn about internships 101. Here, we were prepared for the difference between college life and a job. They stressed the importance of remembering to ask questions as a new full-time employee, and to own the projects you will be given. This is your job now and it’s expected that you do well.

Next, the moment we had been waiting for, a picnic with professionals! Capital University packed us boxed lunches and gave us an informal opportunity to talk with speakers and local professionals, while enjoying our food.

After lunch, we participated in a PR campaign competition seeking to help the Ronald McDonald House in Columbus give thanks to their many volunteers, while recruiting new volunteers. Each of the three groups had an hour to create a news release, social media component, overall goal and strategy and an additional component. All three teams created unique yet exciting campaigns and pitches. Kelsey’s team walked away with the best news release, Melaina’s team walked away with the best pitch and Allison and my team walked away with the best social media campaign and overall campaign.

Overall, this day reinforced the importance of getting to know members from local PRSSA chapters. Between sessions and during the lunch, it was nice talking to other students and hearing their perspective on things, as each school structures their PR classes and PRSSA differently. We all had a fun day of networking in Columbus, and came away with reinforced understandings as well as new perspectives!

Why I Will Always Apply for my Dream Internship

January 20, 2015

By: Erica Stonehill, @estonehill13

interns wanted

When it’s time to start applying for internships, it’s important to try and experience every possible route in the PR world: corporate, agency, non-profit, etc. It’s very common that your first internship will be at a firm, close to home. You’re aiming to get your feet wet and learn the ins and outs of the business. That being said, you should always shoot for the stars, and apply for your dream position, whatever that may be at the time. We hear too many stories from working adults about the horrors of nine to five jobs and getting stuck in a rut. What I find most exciting about PR is that there is vast amount of options to do in this business. I could be a publicist for Ed Sheeran, work the red carpet at the Grammy’s, or (the Holy Grail) manage social media for One Direction.

Speaking from my own experience, I have been fascinated with music for as long as I can remember. I realized very early on, however, that I do not have a trace of musical talent in my bones, which is fortunate for the people around me. Rather than allowing this lack of to hinder my desire to work within the industry, I switched my sights to the business side. Anything to bring me as close as possible to the magic of it all.

As internship season quickly approaches, I began searching for any opportunity within a reasonable distance of Lima, Ohio. I find myself punching the ‘APPLY’ button for a concert venue or record label that I really would like to work for. While I know it’s a long-shot to score my first internship with Columbia Records, it can’t hurt to try. The worst they can do is tell me no, and to apply again in the future.

We should never let the fear of being inexperienced, or too young, keep us away from going after the positions we want. Keep applying for those dream internships, get your name into the system (they may remember you when you apply next year) and build up your resume. A rejection never killed anyone. With  so many possibilities in this business, there is nothing wrong with taking risks and actively working toward those dream positions.

Your Internship Fell Through…Now What?

November 26, 2013 3 Comments

My freshman year was coming to a close and I couldn’t have been happier with my first year at Ohio University. I had made great friends in my dorm, joined a sorority and PRSSA, and done well in all my classes. As sad as I was to leave Athens, I was so excited to be heading home to Cleveland for a summer internship I had gotten through a family friend.

Then the unthinkable happened: about a month before break began I was notified the company’s funding for interns was taken away and I was left with an internship-less summer.

I’m not the first student to experience this situation, and I can promise that I won’t be the last.  After some panicked calls to my mom and some too-little, too-late internship applications I decided that if I wasn’t going to have an internship over the summer, I still needed to do any, and everything possible to grow myself—and my resume.

If you find yourself at the last minute without an internship, don’t let it keep you from exploring other opportunities. Here’s what I didn’t to make my summer as productive as possible.

1. Work. I had worked at a local flower shop for several years prior to going to college and my boss was the second person (after my mom of course) that I called when my internship fell through. I was welcomed backed to my old stomping ground with open arms and I was able to save up money..

Whether it is returning to the part-time job in high school or mowing your neighbor’s lawn, find some sort of job. At the end of the day, you’re still a student with lots of student loans. If you are having trouble growing your resume, try to grow your bank account. Employers would ratherGardner see that you were doing something with your summer rather than nothing.

2. Network. Even though I was lacking in the internship department, I still wanted to network and learn about the PR industry. I got in contact with the director of communications at Progressive Insurance and was given the opportunity to not only job shadow an event, but meet with the entire communications department including their public relations and social media teams.

I was able to talk extensively about the different job roles and get a better understanding of corporate PR. I walked away from my job shadowing opportunity with advice, business cards and many promises of helping me find internships in the future.

Just because you don’t have an internship doesn’t mean that you can’t play in the PR sandbox. Talk to your family and friends. Everyone knows someone and it just takes one person to put you in contact with the right person. Find a company or agency whose work you admire and get in contact with them. They may not be able to offer you a full internship, but you can still grow a relationship with the people and the company.

3. Learn. I didn’t have an internship which meant I had plenty of time. I might not have been in school, but that didn’t mean that I couldn’t learn. Throughout my summer I explored some of the things I had heard about in my PRSSA meetings, but never had the time to explore – Hootsuite, cleaning up my resume and updating my LinkedIn page.  

If you’re going to sit at home over the summer catching up on the latest Netflix series, bring your laptop with you. Spend time that you don’t have during the school year looking up and creating. Google, google, google. If you heard something mentioned multiple times throughout the year and have no idea what it is, find out. Your computer can’t judge you for asking the same question five times so take the time to really dig deep into topics you aren’t familiar with.

If you find yourself with a less than ideal summer, don’t panic. There is always something you can do to improve the situation and it is up to you to make the best of every situation. Learning to adapt is one of the best skills you can have in life and nothing will test your ability to adapt more than losing an internship.

-Sydney Gardner is a sophomore studying strategic communication. Follow her at @SydneyGardner.

Benefits of Joining Both ImPRessions & PRSSA

November 5, 2013 8 Comments

ScrippsIn college one of the greatest ways to gain professional experience and expand your knowledge of your major outside the classroom is by getting involved. Luckily for us Scripps Kids, the journalism school has some top-notch extracurricular activities that students can be a part of. PRSSA and ImPRessions are two of these amazing organizations.

Both yield so many amazing benefits; I could go on forever about why I love each of these organizations. However, when you join both PRSSA and ImPRessions instead of just one or the other, it can be extremely beneficial in the short and long run.

1. You learn skills, and then in return experience how to apply them. PRSSA is a great organization to join if you’re interested in exposure to the many kinds of PR. You get to hear from a wide variety of speakers who are experienced in their jobs and enthusiastic about their day-to-day work. You learn what it’s really like in the world of PR and what’s important to take away from your time here at Scripps.

However, just learning about what you need to know isn’t enough. You need to have hands-on experiences with these skills to really become a master at them. This is why joining ImPRessions in addition to PRSSA is so helpful. You get to perform real tasks for real clients, which the PRSSA speakers elaborate on during presentations.

2. You make more personal connections with members. Because PRSSA meetings are only an hour long, with much of the time being taken up by announcements and speakers, there just isn’t time to connect with fellow members during the meetings. Of course you eventually begin to recognize familiar faces, but without exchanging of names and conversation, it’s hard to bond in that time frame every Monday night.

When you join ImPRessions in addition to PRSSA, you get the opportunity to meet for an hour with a more personal group of people. This allows for a better chance at having casual conversations and making friendships with fellow members. You get to become more familiar with some of the people you see every Monday night at the PRSSA meetings, which no doubt encourages positive relationships between the members of our PRSSA chapter.

3. You have a greater opportunity to hold a leadership position. Running for the executive board in PRSSA is a great way to get more involved and gain potential experience with having a leadership position. However, with only nine available positions, this makes elections quite competitive. With the new revamp of ImPRessions, new director positions have been added, giving members a chance to hold a higher position.

In ImPRessions you can also become an account supervisor or an account executive, which are also both great ways to gain leadership experience and learn how to manage groups of people. By joining both organizations, you have a better chance of being able to hold a leadership position, which in return looks amazing to potential employers.

4. They complement each other on a resume. Being able to put that you’re a member of PRSSA looks great on a resume – it’s even better when you say that you’re a dues paying member. Paying dues may seem like an expensive investment, but the rewards of doing it really are worth it. It comes with benefits that can help improve your skills and facilitate your entry into the wonderful professional world of PR. When you pay dues you also are exempt from paying ImPRessions dues, pretty much making ImPRessions membership an additional bonus to PRSSA. So why not join both?

Both of these organizations provide their members with experience that can be used in college and on after in a professional job setting. You get to learn things that will be used in the future, while making positive relationships and connections in the process.

-Mira Kuhar is a sophomore studying strategic communication with a business minor and English specialization. Follow her at @MiraKuhar.

Gearing Up to Revamp That Resume

August 27, 2013 4 Comments

ResumeThe beginning of the school year is the perfect time to update your resume. Many of us just wrapped up our last days at respective jobs and internships and will be starting new positions for the school year. Equipped with an additional few months of experience, the rub with this is deciding what to eliminate from your current resume.

Follow these tips to make sure your resume is in prime shape for the year:

1. Sell Yourself A brief description of you, your passions and objectives is always a great touch. Think of a few adjectives that best define you and use that sum up who you before you go into what you have done.

2. Put Your Best Foot Forward FIRST Your most proud or impressing achievements should go at the top of your resume. This will change over time but you always want potential employers to see your best work right away. Your resume gets you the interview, not the job. Start it off with your crown jewel.

3. Less is More When it comes to the length of your resume, less is more and one page will always suffice. Keeping the summaries brief will also make it so that your proudest and most recent accomplishments are highlighted. You don’t want your resume to be junky! You can always elaborate and give more detail once you are in the interviewing process.

4. Make it Job Specific Because you only have a page to summarize your education and experience, it is important to tailor your resume to the job that you apply for. You don’t have to list everything you have ever done. Think about the position you are applying for and list what it most relevant to that position when you find yourself having to choose what to post.

5. Design Matters Make good use of your white space. Your resume should have a clean flow and be easy to read. Paragraphs are a no-no. Use bullet points and only say what is necessary.

6. Make the Most of What you Have As a college student it is more or less expected that you have had no “real work experience.” Summer jobs, volunteer work and extracurricular activities are hard work and respectable commitments.  Be sure to include these as well as executive positions held and or any special recognition that you receive.

7. Show Your Personality Adding a splash of color can make your resume stand out, just don’t over do it!

-Malindi Robinson is currently undecided but will be applying to the Scripps strategic communications program this fall as a sophomore. Follow her at @fillemalindi.

5 Challenges of Switching a Major into the Journalism School

August 21, 2013

ScrippsSwitching your major in college is one thing, but switching into the prestigious E.W. Scripps School of Journalism is another story.  Personally, I didn’t know what I wanted to major in coming into college, so I scanned through the majors offered at Ohio University as I was applying.  By the time I got my acceptance letter, I had forgotten what I even chose to major in.  As I’m going into my sophomore year, I’m about to apply to the J-School for spring semester.

I imagine many other students are in the same boat, and probably facing the same challenges as I am. Make sure to keep the following in mind before applying for the school.

1) Recommendation Letters One of the main challenges I’m facing with this process is finding people who can write recommendation letters about my journalistic abilities. Since I did just realize this year that I love writing, I only took two journalism classes.  One of which was a huge lecture hall, so there’s no way my professor would even know my name, let alone write me a letter recommending me. This upcoming semester, I’m taking two more journalism classes, so I’ll be looking to build a relationship with my professors in hope that they will be able to write me a recommendation letter.

2) Examples of journalism work Having just realized that I want to be a journalism major this past year, it’s been challenging to get professional samples of work to be able to submit with my application.  However, I did talk to a professor in Scripps, who suggested I join ImPRessions and PRSSA.  From there, I have learned so much already, and he also suggested that I join as many clubs that I can.

3) The Pressure I thought getting into college my freshman year was stressful, but now that I’m already enrolled at Ohio University, there’s so much pressure to get into the major I want because if I don’t, I might not graduate on time.  If denied acceptance into the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, it is required to wait a whole year to reapply.

4) Resume building Not having much experience in anything related to journalism makes it hard to have a perfect resume that makes you look like you know what you’re doing with your life.  Using InDesign to create your resume at least gives it a professional look.   Also, asking professors and other J-School students to critique your resume will help make it get that much closer to perfection.

5) Getting help It’s challenging having to ask for help because you don’t know what you’re doing.  Transferring your major to journalism is a difficult process, but asking for help is the only way you’ll make it.  Email professors, go talk to an adviser, anything helps to get you going in the right direction.

Applying for the J-School is a challenging process, but it will be worth it in the end.  I’m looking forward to saying that I’m officially part of the J-School.  I have met many wonderful people as I’m applying this upcoming semester.

-Meredith Broadwater is a sophomore studying media arts and studies but will be applying to the journalism school in the fall. Follow her at @Meredithbroad.




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