October 9, 2014
By: Hannah Wheeless @tweetsonwheels
This past summer I was fortunate enough to remember my roots down in the Lone Star State of Texas while gaining valuable knowledge of the PR industry. Interning at a major communications agency thousands of miles away from my OU home made for an incredible experience.
KGBTexas Communications is headquartered in San Antonio, but also has an office in Houston. They have clients both local and national including, the San Antonio Police Department, Benson Automotive, McDonalds and Walmart. I was a PR and advertising intern, which allowed me the opportunity to understand how both sides function. I learned everything from media lists to event planning while working with some of the most talented, creative and inspiring people I’ve ever met.
The top three things I took away from my internship are
Internships are not as scary as I thought
I remember being a freshman at my first PRSSA meeting hearing all about internships and how crucial it was that I had a good one or I basically wasn’t getting a job. Cue my first mental breakdown. Luckily, just as everyone says, everything will work out and it did. I learned that confidence is key, and as long as you’re doing the best you can do, everything will be fine. However successful, important and down right intimidating the employees you work with are, they are just people and they’re there to help.
I don’t know everything and nobody expects me to
Internships exist so you can learn what a classroom lecture can’t teach you. No matter how big or small the business you intern at, everyone is there to teach you something. I made plenty of mistakes in my short six weeks, but I learned from those mistakes, and now I can recite the phone number to every news station in San Antonio.
It’s important to get to know who I’m working with
We’ve all heard it before: it’s not what you know – it’s who you know. KGB was a fairly smaller agency, so I was given the opportunity to meet and work with almost everyone. Not only did I work with them in the office, but also I frequently tagged along on lunch breaks with different employees throughout my internship. Getting to actually sit down and learn about the person I was sitting with in an office with for eight hours a day helped me advance in my internship, and will certainly help me in the future.
The next step is using all of this knowledge to get that dream job. We’ll start with goals of this semester.
Put together a portfolio
I can talk about what I did at my internship for days, but if I don’t actually have anything to show then not a lot of people employers care.
Get on Dean’s List
It is about who you know, but that will only get me so far. Any employer can appreciate a nice set of PR skills, and the GPA to back it up.
Manage the stress
Between the work, school and campus clubs it’s easy to have a breakdown or twelve. If I can remember to go for a nice run or kick it on the couch every now and then, I think I’ll find making these goals happen a little easier. As a senior, it’s important to live this last beautiful bobcat year to the fullest.