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Virtual PR Internship Opportunity

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Jul 13, 2009 in Public Relations

If you’re anything like me, you’ve already started to look for opportunities to gain experience in PR this fall.

Or maybe I’m just crazy.

But, if you are looking for opportunities, check out Come Recommended’s internships. Positions include:

Be sure to tell Heather you heard about it from me!

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If you’re a PR intern, what are you doing right now?

Posted by Rachel Esterline on May 21, 2009 in Internships

It’s always hard to unwind after you’ve had a great day. I absolutely love working at Fahlgren Mortine. I also attended a PRSA Central Ohio mixer after work.

One of the greatest things about PR is the variety of things you can do on the job. Today, I was able to work Twitter-related things for a client. I think it’s great that this client wants to start tweeting to reach its audience.

I also will be working on a media monitoring project, all the way from outlining how I will monitor traditional and consumer-generated media, to doing the actual monitoring, to writing the reports.

If you are a PR intern, what are you doing right now? I’d love to hear about and learn from your experiences.

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The Founder’s Award

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Apr 15, 2009 in Career, Fahlgren Mortine, Internships

Reflecting over the past three years, I realize I’ve put in a lot of hours in developing my skills for a career in public relations. Sometimes I wondered if it was going to make a difference when I started applying for my six-credit internship.

On Wednesday, I found out it had. I was offered the Founder’s Award. One month ago, I wrote Fahlgren Mortine Award: 5 Things I Realized When Applying. I was ecstatic and shocked when I found out I got it. The award offers a $1,500 scholarship and a full-time paid internship at $400 per week. Although I do not know how many great PR students I was up against, I’m sure there was some stiff competition.

Fahlgren Mortine is listed in the top 100 public relations firms nationally by PR Week. It is the largest firm in Columbus, Ohio, pulling in $5.2 million in revenue in 2007. They have earned PRSA Silver and Bronze Anvils in ’08, ’07 and ’06.

So you can see why I’m so excited.

I start the internship on May 20, so be sure to check back on this blog if you are interested in what it is like to move out of state to complete an amazing internship.

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MWW offers internship & $5,000 stipend for an outstanding essay

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Jan 24, 2009 in Internships, Public Relations

Check out the latest guest post on PRos in Training about an internship with MWW.

The perks are:

  • Three-month long internship
  • $5,000 stipend
  • The opportunity to earn an internship with a 100-word essay

Go to http://www.mwwpr.com/change.

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Be a rock star intern

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Dec 2, 2008 in Internships, Public Relations, Uncategorized

So you work hard through college and gain the experience you need to nab that great internship. Now what?

Culpwrit’s short post on advice for the first days on the job has some good points.

As an intern, you should show your ambition and willingness to gain experience. During my internship with CMU Public Relations and Marketing, I went to the Friends of the Libraries luncheon on a nice, sunny Saturday. The event was somewhat interesting, of course, but I was the youngest person there by about 30 years. But, I was willing to give up part of my weekend to gain more experience and have the opportunity to write an article for the newsletter.

One situation I encountered was occasionally not having much work to do. What do you do when you’re waiting for someone to return with one edited story and the sources for the other story you’re working on are out of the office? Ask if there is anything you can do to help at that time. I recently did this and got to edit a program guide that the writer didn’t have time to do. When others are overwhelmed with work, they appreciate your willingness to help out.

Be willing to try new things. I had never conceptualized or written copy for a magazine ad. But when they asked if I could work on a few ads, I took it on and impressed them with my ideas. Don’t be afraid to be bold.

Learn as much as you can while you are there. If you don’t know something, go to the library or research online. I had never used Adobe InDesign before, so I went to the library to get a book about it. I was asked to write feature stories, even though I only had experience writing news stories. I worked hard and read blogs about writing.

Be a rock star intern. Impress your supervisors because they will be the ones writing reference letters for your next internships or job.

Related posts:
Ten Things I Learned as a Publications Intern

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Ten Things I Learned As A Publications Intern

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Aug 29, 2008 in CMU PRM, Internships, Portfolio, Public Relations, Uncategorized, Writing

It feels weird not to be working for CMU Public Relations and Marketing every day. I miss it already. I’m really thankful that they are continuing my internship into the fall semester.

Here are ten things I learned as a publications intern, and I would like to thank every person at PRM for helping me learn so much over the past four months.

1. Adobe InDesign. When I started working with PRM, I had no idea how to use this program. I’ve now put together CMU Welcomes You, a tabloid for potential students and two flyers for the CMU/United Way Fund Drive.

2. Storytelling. I had been taught basic news writing in JRN 202. I could efficiently tell you the who, what, when, where, why and how. I could place quotes throughout the story. Dan constantly encouraged me to improve my writing by “telling the story.” Make it real. Make people go, “Wow. I want to know more about this person in the story.”

3. Write tight. Don’t waste any words. If you don’t need them, cut them. By removing the clutter, you can make the remaining words mean more to the reader.

4. Interviewing. What makes this person tick? How are they unique? I learned to ask questions beyond what the story required and then to listen to what people had to say to me. You’d be surprised at the number of the puzzle pieces of storytelling that would fall into your lap if.

5. Multiple entry points. People have busy lives. Write so they can scan the story and get the gist of what’s going on and introduce multiple entry points. Pull-quotes, boxes and subtitles are all easy, but effective ways of doing this.

6. Print it. I don’t know many hours I stared at a computer screen, trying to catch errors or rewrite a story. When you have a hard copy in front of you, you see the story in a new light.

7. Thin and trim. Quotes are a vital part of the story, but trim them down to the real meat. It will make it much more impactful if you paraphrase the less important information preceding the good quote.

8. Be active. Writing actively will engage your readers.

9. What’s next? Keep your writing relevant to your audience. Get them to ask, “What’s next?” and then give them the information they need.

10. Keep an open mind and be enthusiastic. I don’t know how many great portfolio pieces fell into my lap because of my positive attitude. Did I know how to design a tabloid and place ads, articles and photos? Certainly not. As a PR major, do I have much experience coming up with ad concepts? I didn’t, but I do now. I accepted any project they asked me to do, from writing copy to transcribing interviews. Some were certainly more fun than others, but my attitude, enthusiasm and drive is what opened doors for many great projects.

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Social media, PR, and what I’ve been up to

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Aug 8, 2008 in Books, CMU PRM, Freelancing

I’ve been reading blogs lately, but haven’t had time to post. I think once I start classes again, and am not working full-time, I’ll be able to post more often.

Chris Brogan, a blogger I recently came across through Google Reader, posted links to 20 free eBooks about social media. I haven’t had time to blog, let alone actually look at these books, but his blog is great so I’m sure the books are too.

Also, if you are a PR person, I would suggest checking out Bill Sledzik’s debate on what PR is and is not. I find the posts interesting. A lot of people have been commenting on it, which makes it even more interesting.

What I’ve been up to:

First of all, I’ve been working full time for CMU PR & Marketing…and loving it.

I have been working on editing the copy for my pro-bono client. I found a graphic design student at CMU who was able to create some wonderful new logos for them to consider as well. I meet with the client Tuesday, for lunch, to show her what I’ve been working on.

I designed a flyer for the United Way/CMU Silent Auction. Everyone seemed to love it, which is great considering I have only had a short tutorial from Dan on using InDesign.

My freelance project with Young Money magazine should be starting up soon. I’ll be writing on ‘green living’ and I’ve already been getting ideas and trying free products (most of which were sent to me for free, making it even better).

And I’ve been seeking other freelance opportunities. If you see any good ones, send them my way!

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Working Hard on a Saturday

Posted by Rachel Esterline on Aug 2, 2008 in CMU PRM, Pro Bono, Public Relations

Today I spent four hours working on brochure copy for my pro bono client. They have several brochures in need of updating. I saw the need and contacted them, offering free services.

I’m really excited about it because redoing these brochures will really make a difference for this non-profit. Their brochure about giving is very wordy and confusing. They actually hired a professional to do it back during their capital campaign.

My internship has been great. I’m working on CMU Welcomes You again. I am basically redoing the design and format. Dan said what I have is great, and now that we have that version to fall back on, I can go ahead and change things to make it more engaging.

It’s been quite interesting, considering the fact that I had never used Adobe InDesign before accepting this internship. I’ve picked up a lot though. I think my experience with Microsoft Publisher helped. I brought home a print-out of CMU Welcomes You to look at this weekend. We are trying to make it more engaging. The publication goes to potential students, meaning many of the recipients are high school seniors with the attention span of a goldfish. Most won’t bother to read anything that doesn’t look remotely interesting.

Looking at the few pages I have already redesigned, I think I’m heading the right way. I might try tracking down some people to test the publication. If they can tell me where I lose their attention, I might be able to fix it.

I have a new assignment at work as well. It’s a contest, but that’s about all the details I can give right now. I’ll be writing copy for the posters, a press release, and Web copy. I might even try designing the poster. We have graphic designers in the office, but they are so busy with other projects. I would love to give it a try. I’m going to have to pick up a book on Adobe InDesign though. I have some good ideas…

I have finished my biology class (with a B!) and I’ve got less than a month before I go back to school. Until then, I’ll be working full-time for CMU Public Relations and Marketing. I absolutely love working there.

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