When looking for an internship in Communications, it can be very overwhelming at first because of how broad this field is. I started looking over the summer of my junior year of college because I needed to find an internship by the start of the fall semester. I downloaded Handshake and began to search for communication and public relations internship opportunities within the Glenside area. It didn’t take me long to find a public information internship with Montgomery Township. Even though I had no idea what public information would entail, I looked at the job description and applied. I ended up getting the job and now I have started my second semester working in this position.
You may be wondering, what exactly does a public information intern do? I primarily manage the social media accounts for Montgomery Township and Montgomery Township Community and Recreation Center. This means that I am given information or pictures that I have to schedule to post or I am monitoring the Recreation Center’s website to see what classes need to be pushed in order to try and increase registration. I also frequently am responsible for creating graphics or infographics on Canva to be posted on these accounts. Occasionally I am tasked with conducting a social media audit for these accounts to see what aspects need to be improved and what we should continue to do in order to keep our audience engaged. Besides social media management, I help to send out the weekly Montgomery Township newsletter through Robly. This means I take the information provided from different departments and input it into a template. If Montgomery Township is hosting an event for the public, I will assist in preparing any digital content that needs to be communicated.
Currently, I am working on creating a Parks and Recreation Guide and a Community and Recreation Center Guide. The goal for these guides is to provide township information to new residents that just moved into the area. What I like about my job is that sometimes I go into the office and have no idea what I am going to be doing that day. I may have to set aside a task I am working on to send out a road closure update or a winter weather announcement. No matter the situation, it’s important that I am able to adapt to the changing circumstances which makes working in local government difficult at times. I have to make sure all the information being distributed is accurate while trying to get the information out there as quickly as possible.
Whenever you start looking for an internship, don’t be surprised if it takes you awhile to find one. This process can be very tedious but that doesn’t mean you aren’t qualified. Apply to as many places as possible and don’t be scared away by the job description. Internships are meant to be a learning experience so you shouldn’t be an expert at the job before you even start. It could also be beneficial to reach out to your advisor or professors in the department and ask them if they know of any places that are seeking communication or public relations interns. Finally, time is an important factor in this process so don’t wait until the last minute to start looking. It is better to get a head start than be out of time and have no chance of securing an internship.