By: Kaitlyn Bondar
Completing an internship is a requirement of CMU’s integrative public relations program and plays a significant role in providing hands-on experience for students before they enter the workforce. I secured and excelled at my internship because of the training I’d received through the IPR program and my involvement in PRSSA and PR Central.
This past summer I was a marketing intern at the environmental engineering and consulting firm Limnotech in Ann Arbor, Mich. When I first started looking for an internship I was extremely discouraged. I live in lower metro-Detroit, where most of the paid internships were located far away. Just before the end of the spring semester, I was hired by Limnotech.
Required skills for the position included graphic design, journalistic writing, research skills and social media analytics. Core IPR classes like foundations of public relations, PR and advertising research and public relations writing were tremendously helpful in teaching me these skills. All of my coworkers were scientists and engineers. I was the only person with formal training in communication or public relations and was given a lot of responsibility in this area of the business. I was confident in my abilities because of my coursework and hands-on experience in PRSSA and PR Central.
PR Central and PRSSA helped me build the skills that ultimately allowed me to secure this position over people from larger schools like Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. My internship coordinator said my well-rounded, digital portfolio and professional attitude set me apart from other applicants.
Working at LimnoTech, I further developed my professional communication, graphic design, writing and multitasking skills. Without the IPR program, PRSSA and PR Central, I would not have secured my internship. The IPR program gave me the necessary skill foundation, PRSSA taught me what professionalism truly is and how to professionally network and PR Central provided valuable leadership opportunities and portfolio materials.
As I complete my last semester at CMU, I want to thank PRSSA and PR Central. I owe these organizations so much, and would not be the PR professional I am today without them.