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Reflection of the Internship

April 25, 2018
by Laurel Thoreson

This semester I was a Social Media and Marketing intern at Fuqua School in Farmville, Virginia. I enjoyed my time at the school and felt very comfortable, because I have worked in a school setting for almost three years. I knew when I applied to the internship that it would be a correct fit for me and after interning here for 15 weeks, I can say that my intuition was correct. Working at a small, independent schools means that some things come easier than others. I did face several challenges, but I believe I was able to work through them and learn from them. In the beginning of my internship, things moved slowly and assignments were few in numbers, very easy and did not require too much of my time, so I would be left without things to work on or would be constantly having to pester my supervisor for more work. I helped change that by letting my supervisor know I was up for more of a challenge and wanted to work on larger, more time consuming projects. I also offered to alter projects to make them test my strengths and weaknesses. For instance, the “Day in the Life” video. I was tasked to make a video using still images and I offered to spend a day recording children for a full day and make a “Highlights of the Lower School” video. Another challenge I faced was a lack of communication. In the beginning, especially, there were issues with communication and several people were instructing me to do things and I did not know who to listen to. Ultimately I had one supervisor and if the assignment did not get approved by her, I was not allowed to complete it. For me, that meant having to say no to someone and feeling like I had let them down, but it also meant I was properly following directions and doing my job.

My career search has not yet started, because I still have one semester of classes left and I have plans to go to graduate school. From interning at Fuqua School and gaining exposure to different jobs and skills, I became really interested in yearbook. When I first decided to major in Communication Studies, I did so hoping that one day I could use my skills to become a Video/ Media or Yearbook teacher. I had the opportunity to assist in the upper school yearbook class and I remembered everything I loved about yearbook from when I was in high school and how much I love being able to mentor students. I start applying to grad school in the fall and I hope that I will be able to further pursue an education that will aid me in becoming a media-based teacher.

Since my first journal entry, I have gained many skills. I have learned how to communicate effectively and efficiently in a professional manner, improvise when things do not go as planned, work on a deadline and try not to take my work home with me at the end of the day. The biggest one was leaving my work at work and working on school when I am at school, because I have a problem with leaving tasks unfinished.

I was able to complete most of my goals that were set in my performance evaluation. I did not do too much with social media, other than YouTube, I guess that comes with there being two interns, our tasks were split up based on things we did best. I was able to do one “Day in the Life” video, but however was not able to update the YouTube weekly. I did work in the yearbook class and wrote several more Falcon Flyer articles.

My mentors were amazing. I had three of them, my supervisor, Dara, the admissions director, Christy and the director of communications, Linda. They were all phenomenal and ensured that I always had a task to work on and that I had all of the resources available to complete the tasks. I only saw Dara once a week while interning, but we communicated via email otherwise and she was always very prompt and instructive.

I have already mentioned this internship to some of my friends, saying that they should apply because I have enjoyed it so much and have learned many things from it. I would not have gotten the internship if it had not been referred to me by my friend who had it last semester and spoke highly of me to the staff and offered to let me volunteer in her place for an event last semester. I would recommend this internship to anyone who wants to do something new everyday. You will always be tasked with different assignments and each and everyday feels new and unlike the last. It makes the internship go by faster if you are not constantly doing the same thing day to day.


 Conducting an interview for my documentary.

 My internship was very hands-on; here I am folding brochures for a fundraising-marketing campaign.