While interning for the Longwood University Communication Studies department during the Fall semester of 2019 I was tasked with designing a new introductory video to the department, posting on social media, creating blog posts, and much more. I thoroughly enjoyed working with Dr. Hosterman throughout my internship and gaining knowledge and insight that I will be able to implement in the professional world. One piece of insight that I gained from him was how to handle potential conflict in a confident way. While creating the video for the department I worked with a group of my peers who would be filming and editing the video. Throughout the creation of the video, multiple bumps appeared on the road and I was worried they would become bigger. Dr. Hosterman helped me to be confident that even if the bumps grew it was necessary. Luckily, in this particular situation, the conflict did not grow, however, I am thankful for the insight Dr. Hosterman provided me in the event additional conflict arose. I am confident that I will be able to utilize this skill in the professional world when conflict arises or there is a potential for conflict. Knowing that the success of the project could be at stake will encourage me to be confident when approaching potential conflict.
Another skill that I began to gain during this internship was academic blog writing. Prior to this internship, I had little to no experience writing blogs, especially ones that would be published on an academic site. Dr. Hosterman worked diligently with me to perfect each post before publishing it to the site. As a result of this internship, I am more confident when writing blog posts. Though, I am still very aware that there is room for improvement and growth in my writing style. I am very thankful for the opportunity to learn and begin obtaining a new skill of blog writing as a result of this internship.
Below, I have exhibited five of my different accomplishments from my internship. A majority of the works will be hyperlinked since they are still working documents for the department. I hope you enjoy looking through my work and I encourage you to reach out to me with any questions you may have.
Welcome to the COMMunity Video
This video is the introductory video to the Communication Studies department at Longwood. I worked alongside three other communication studies students to create this video. My role within the creation process was to set up a meeting with the students and describe to them what I was looking for within this video and what the video’s purpose would be once created. After the initial meeting, the students sent me a script to look over and approve before they began filming. I was then sent multiple cuts of the video to look over with Dr. Hosterman and then I emailed the group what changes would need to be made. While I played no role in the actual filming, editing, or production of the video, I still played a vital role in creating the outline and providing fine-tuning feedback until the video was publishable material.
Once the video was finalized, I began promoting it on the department’s different social media platforms as well as playing the video in class for students to watch. The video is now being used for recruiting at high schools and other events around campus. One of my favorite aspects of the video is how it highlights both the digital media and public relations concentrations that the major offers. As well as the different organizations students can become involved in that will highlight skills learned within the classroom.
COMMLab Article on Blog Site
This article is all about the COMMLab course at Longwood University. Upon reading this article you will learn all about what the course entails and why it is beneficial to students.
In order to write this article, I constructed multiple interviews with the two professors who designed this course and currently teach the course. I also interviewed a student who is currently enrolled in the course. As well as received a statement from an alumnus of the course. I found this article to be one of the stronger pieces that I wrote throughout my internship primarily because I was interested in learning about COMMLab and had practice from the other posts I had written. Primarily this entire article was produced by me, except for some changes that were made by Dr. Hosterman during the editing process. Overall, I found this to be an exciting and beneficial read for students, alumni, and members of the Farmville community because they were able to learn about COMMLab and what it has to offer. Personally, I found this piece to be somewhat of a promotional piece for the course because of the way the story was constructed as well as the added information about how to have COMMLab create a video for you. I think that the promotional aspect of this piece is one of the reasons I enjoyed writing it.
Social Media Follower Tracker
One of my roles during my internship was to handle the department’s social media accounts; primarily Twitter and Instagram. After thinking about this role and what I wanted to do with it, I decided to create a document that I could track the number of followers on Instagram and Twitter each week, as well as the level of engagement each post received. I utilized GoogleSheets to create this tracker so that I could share it with my supervisor while continually updating it.
At the beginning and end of each week, I would write down the number of followers on both Twitter and Instagram. I would then go back through the different posts made on each account throughout the week and write down what the post was/about and how many likes/comments it received. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching the number of followers and level of engagement increase throughout my time with this internship. While I would still like to see a higher increase in engagement with the different posts, I am happy to see that the engagement has drastically increased since the beginning of the semester. One of the greatest struggles I have encountered while working with social media is finding content worth posting. The beginning of the semester was a much greater struggle in regards to finding content; while, towards the end of the semester, I was able to identify content to post much easier.
One of my primary jobs during this internship was posting Twitter and Instagram. I preferred posting on Instagram as opposed to Twitter because I felt that Instagram gave me more opportunities to share what the COMMunity is all about.
When I began this internship there were a few pictures on the department’s Instagram account, but they were very outdated. Since I have taken over the Instagram account, I have posted 26 static posts and a countless amount of stories. The 26 static posts range in their themes. Some posts are about student organizations, alumni, professors, and many other things. However, my favorite posts are the ones that show a glimpse of what it is truly like to be a part of the COMMunity at Longwood. For example, the professors dressing up for Halloween, Dr. Paal playing the “Final Countdown” for his research students. I have thoroughly enjoyed posting pictures about what makes the COMMunity so special and unique. The students seem to be liking the increase in posts from the account and will make comments on how wonderful the content is. Most of the students do not know that I am the one who runs the social media account, but it makes me happy to know they are enjoying the content that I post.
Social Media Posting Calendar
Since the department plans to continue having a large social media presence, I created a posting schedule calendar. All important university dates are included in the calendar so that the department can post about them as well. Such as the different registration and add/drop dates. I also created a “faculty takeover” event. This is when every two weeks a new faculty member will run the Instagram account for three days. They will be encouraged to share pictures of their classes, grading, office hours, etc. At the beginning of next semester, the faculty members will be able to decide when they want to take over the account.
Another added event to the calendar is a Senior Spotlight Day. I plan for this event to happen every week and be a way to highlight different seniors within the department. I thought this would be a great way for other students to see all the opportunities that come with being a Communication Studies major. A smaller version of this calendar was pilot-tested this semester, but I decided to share the new one I created for next semester. I have found this one to be more realistic than the original one I had created.
Getting ready for the majors and minors fair.
Talking with students who may want to add Communication Studies as their major or minor.