Summer Internship Series: My #Paid Summer

Emily Walsh ’19

Influencer Marketing, #paid, New York City

My name is Emily Walsh, I am a Communications Major with a concentration in Organizational Studies. This summer I had the opportunity to work for an influencer marketing company, #paid.

#paid is an influencer marketing company that is based in Toronto, Canada. Recently, they have expanded their offices to New York City. I was fortunate enough to be the second employee ever in the NYC office. Influencer marketing is a form of the marketing world that focuses on social media influencers. These individuals have extreme influence over their followers and brands reach out to them to help market their product in an organic fashion. Influencers are seen as new age celebrities, they have high followings on different social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Influencer Marketing has grown to be one of the more trusted forms of marketing as most people trust and check their social media channels more frequently than reading magazines. What #paid does for these influencers is provide a middle ground between the brands and the influencers. They have a hybrid solution of technology and managed services that provide a streamlined process to make partnering together easy and effective.

Since I was the one of the few people to be in the new NYC office, my internship was not your typical workplace environment. My boss was head of sales in New York City, and we did work together and he taught me many valuable lessons. I was able to attend some of his Sales presentations and Marketing Panels. Most days my main priority was talking over “Slack” which was the main form of communication the company used and to work with the Creative and Marketing Team. Initially, I thought I would be used to help with some unfinished projects and loose ends. However, my role at #paid was far greater than I ever could have expected. My responsibilities this summer ranaged from researching data on different companies, to helping format excels, to creating new proposals and searching our database for the perfect influencers that would fit the campaigns. The variety of campaigns I was able to work on ranged from North Face to Canada Goose to Local Grocery Stores in Canada.

My summer at #paid helped me grow in a way I hadn’t known possible yet. It helped me see my strengths in working under pressure and how important communication skills are in person and over the computer. It allowed me to fuel my passion for Marketing and put into perspective what the working world truly is like.

I would like to thank Cole Tone the Sales director in NYC for being my mentor, and Bryan Gold and Adam Rivietz the Co-Founders of #paid for giving me the opportunity to grow and learn at the company!

Summer Internship Series: My Summer at a Literary Journal

Samantha Toshok ’18

Editorial Intern, Virginia Quarterly Review, Charlottesville, Virginia

My name is Samantha Toshok and I am currently a senior at Denison University pursuing a Major in Psychology and a Concentration in Narrative Non-Fiction Writing.  This summer, I worked at the Virginia Quarterly Review, a national literary journal located in Charlottesville, Virginia.  There, I worked as an editorial intern, and assisted with the production of the magazine, proofread and edited both solicited and unsolicited manuscript submissions, marketed the publication on social media platforms, and helped run the 2017 VQR Writer’s Conference.  Prior to starting this internship with VQR, I knew I had intentions of pursuing a career in writing, however, I was not entirely sure in what type of capacity that would be.  This internship taught me a lot about precision and word choice when it came to writing or communicating a message to audience members or our readership base.  With the help of my direct supervisors and boss, Allison Wright, the managing editor of VQR, I would not have the opportunity to understand the process that goes behind magazine production and the level of accuracy and precision that goes into editorial work.  I have, however, found that I am drawn more to creative roles in the corporate side that involve creating narratives around products, services, or brands.  I also would like to incorporate more of my Psychology degree and use that to better understand consumer behavior.  Despite my different career aspirations, coming out of this summer experience has given me the opportunity to hone the very skills that I plan on applying to many future creative roles such as market research consultancy or advertisement.

Summer Internship Series: Finding My Career Path

Ashmita Das ’18

Digital Marketing, Xebec E-Media Technologies, Pune, India

This summer I spent two months in Pune, India in an internship that set me on my career path. I’m Ashmita Das, a senior double majoring in Communication and English Literature. Like any other college student, I wasn’t absolutely sure of what I wanted to do after graduation, till I spent the summer working at a digital marketing firm called Xebec E-Media Technologies.

I went in with no previous knowledge of the industry and unsure of whether I would thrive there. I quickly realized this is what I wanted to do with my career. I worked on digital marketing strategy for a major tourism company and came up with unique ideas to sell a campaign pitch. I also handled social media content for Aldo, Birkenstock and Call It Spring in the Middle East, all by myself. I was constantly surprised by how much I could take on and accomplish every day. Going from a timid intern who was unsure of herself to handling major accounts alone, I saw my professional growth in front of my eyes.

I worked with an amazing team of young professionals who became like my family in an unfamiliar city. From hectic workdays to dinners on the weekends, they made sure I felt like I was one of them. This experience was made even more gratifying by my supervisor, Zeeshanali Ruby, who constantly pushed me to do better and taught me all he could possibly teach me in two months. He was invested in making sure that I got everything I needed and more from this internship.

The internship let me work with fashion, which is one of my passions and made me realize how I could utilize my strengths to make a career out of it. It helped me plan my life after graduation and put me on a path to attain a master’s degree in Digital Marketing from Europe. This summer internship was a truly enriching experience that would not have been possible without my amazing colleagues and the all the help I received from the Knowlton Center.

Summer Internship Series: The Summer of Adaptability

Thomas Stephenson ’18

Marketing Intern, ContentVia and Health Admin Solutions, Columbus, Ohio

My name is Thomas Stephenson, and I’m a senior Communications major and History minor here at Denison University.  This summer, I was given the opportunity to be a marketing intern at two different companies. One was a company called ContentVia and the other Health Admin Solutions. I’m sure to my audience those sound like two incredibly different places to work, but one of the major things I learned this summer is skills in marketing can apply to almost any business.

However while I did work as a marketing intern for both these companies, my roles at each were somewhat different. ContentVia works with various startup companies to try and promote them as much as possible and set them on the right track. So one of my jobs was to draft various social media posts for these startup. These included Twitter, Facebook, and Google+. I also did a lot of research around the internet for new clients who could use our service, and even sent out a few outreach emails and made a few calls to try and spread awareness to them.

For Health Admin Solutions, my job was almost entirely focused on their social media platforms. They had a Facebook and Twitter page, but had not done much work in promoting them or even posting on them. I took over and immediately started to work on drawing attention and reaching out to clients on both platforms.

I felt great about what I was able to accomplish for both these organizations, as well as myself. The outreach I worked on through social media and contact with clients opened up new doors for both companies, and I’m proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone and learning some new skills along the way. I also feel as if this summer gave me an idea of what I’d like to pursue after college, which was my main goal at the start of June. I wanted to narrow down my interests and find a place within the marketing field that I enjoyed working in, and I believe social media could be one of those. I also realized through my research that advertising is a job I’d love to pursue in the future, and I’m excited to see what opportunities are out there for me after graduation!

Overall, interning with these two companies was a fantastic experience that has not only boosted my résumé, but my skills in marketing and confidence with professional work. I’m looking forward to the next challenge that’s sent my way!

Summer Internship Series: “Let her in, she’s a member of the press!”

Fitale Wari ’18

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

My name is Fitale Wari. I’m a senior Communication and English Literature double major with a concentration in Narrative Nonfiction Writing. I interned at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette this past summer, and although I was technically an intern in the features department, I was addressed as a reporter in the newsroom.

I didn’t have many expectations prior to entering my internship; however, I did expect to have a desk job starting at 9 a.m. and ending at 5 p.m. From training to specific assignments, I expected structure. This was not the case.

I found myself working inconsistent hours depending on what I was covering. I’d come to work later in the afternoon if I was working on a story late the night before. Or, if I was reporting on-site, I’d find myself sending emails to the newsroom so another reporter could piece together my vignettes to create an informative and in depth story. I enjoyed the flexibility and I enjoyed being tasked with different assignments. Amongst everything I experienced, I most enjoyed stories I pitched; they ranged from profiles, weekend events, history and preservation within the city, architecture and art, and concerts.

Disregarding the different stories, assigned to and pitched by myself, my favorite part about reporting for the Post-Gazette was meeting the diverse individuals I interviewed. Had I not reported for the paper, I wouldn’t’ve met all the artists, local Pittsburghers, and active community members. In fact, they each taught me different lessons.

It was interesting to be in the newsroom during our time – during the heat of political, economic, and social differences. It was also interesting to witness a shift in print journalism to a “digital now” approach, which is what it was called in the newsroom. Since the paper is under a huge transition, many of the seminars I sat-in on with seasoned reporters seemed standard for someone who was raised with technology surrounding them.

Although I enjoyed this summer, and I learned a lot from my internship – from appropriate professional behaviors to independent living and production of work – I’m unsure whether I want to pursue a career in journalism. I know post-undergrad I would love to continue my studies, but I’ve been more interested in the ways in which humans communicate. I’d rather study how relationships are formed based on the rhetoric humans use. So, in a way, working in the newsroom allowed me the opportunity to see the power in the spread of information, use of language, and manipulation by the media.

I wouldn’t’ve discovered this internship opportunity had it not been for Professor Jack Shuler from the English department. Nor would I have effectively represented myself through my resume and cover letter had it not been for the coaching of Michele Doran from the Knowlton Center.

My work is still featured on the Post-Gazette website, and if you search my name, you’ll see my clips. I appreciate the one-on-one guidance from various editors: Kevin Kirkland, L.A. Johnson, Scott Mervis, and Virginia Linn. One special thanks to my mentor, Arthi Subramaniam, who was patient, flexible, and extremely supportive.

Summer Internship Series: My Summer at a Historic Mansion

Michaela Shea-Gander ’19

Bryn Du Mansion, Granville, Ohio

My name is Michaela Shea-Gander, a junior Communication major with a concentration in Narrative Non-Fiction Writing. This summer, I lived on Denison’s campus while completing an internship at the Bryn Du Mansion.

Bryn Du is a historic mansion about a mile away from campus, where various events take place every week, such as weddings and polo games. Bryn Du’s property comprises 52 acres, including the 32 acre lawn, and eight buildings. The estate is on the National Register of Historic Places, and people come from all around the country to visit it or attend weddings. The mansion and other buildings are used for weddings, meetings, and other community events. This summer, I assisted my supervisors with overseeing events and other projects. Every weekend I attended multiple weddings, and was in charge of locking up the historic property. I was given the opportunity to see what went into event planning and coordinating.

Besides the events, I worked on various projects at Bryn Du. I created marketing materials such as pamphlets and brochures, and organized financial forms. I also answered questions from visitors and set up for events. My largest project, which was my favorite part of the internship, was researching and writing a historical booklet about Bryn Du. From this research, I learned about Bryn Du and Granville’s rich history, and the families who owned the mansion in the past. I dug through historical archives and newspaper articles, interviewed individuals who were knowledgeable about the history of Bryn Du, and acquired photographs for the booklet. The history that I learned was more dense and interesting than I thought it would be, and I am glad I had the chance to learn more about the town of Granville. I felt accomplished writing this booklet, because I felt that it was a valuable asset to Bryn Du.

The internship experience I had at Bryn Du this summer tested my adaptability because it was not always what I expected it to be. Different situations would arise that I did not feel I was equipped to deal with, but that is how I learned a variety of skills. After this internship, I do not see myself going into event planning or coordinating, but I do see myself working for another non-profit organization in the future, and I am glad I had the opportunity to utilize my research and writing skills. Bryn Du is a beautiful place that is not well-known on campus, and I hope that others get the chance to learn about its history.

I would like to thank my supervisors, Bruce Cramer and Athena Koehler, and the Knowlton Center for this opportunity.

Summer Internship Series: Business in the Bay-Area

Khalig Howard ’19

Magnolia Prime, San Francisco, California

Khalig howard '19 tabling for magnolia prime

My name is Khalig Howard, and I am 3rd year student at Denison University. At Denison, I am a Global Commerce Major, a German Minor, a member of the Black Student Union, a player on the Varsity Lacrosse team, and a volunteer with the local Big Brothers & Big Sisters Lunch Buddies program.

This past summer I worked in San Francisco for a tech start-up called Magnolia Prime. This was my first time being in San Francisco, and I had the summer of my life learning and working in the Bay Area. At Magnolia Prime, I worked with a small team based in the Silicon Valley to develop and market SaaS Interactive Voice Response (IVR) services to Home Care Facilities, Senior Living Communities, and Small Medical Practice providers. My duties included, but were not limited to, disseminating news through Constant Contact, creating market competition reports, and working in tandem with the Vice President of Business Development to identify and pursue perspective clients.

In addition to working for Magnolia Prime, I coached a U15 lacrosse team based in San Francisco called the NorCal Braves. This was a real pleasure for me, and provided a much needed break in my work week. My formal title was “Summer Marketing and Business Development Intern”. I learned a lot about the procurement process, and managed the social media platforms of the company. I spent a large majority of my time working with the Vice President of Business Development to identify, pursue, and engage prospective clients for our SaaS based IVR software. I was able to increase our website’s web traffic two-fold in the time I spent working with the company this summer, and I even made my way onto the front page! (https://www.magnoliaprime.com/)

A typical work day for me involved waking up a 6:30 am to take the 1BX from my apartment in San Francisco to the Cal-Train station, where I would then train down to Redwood City (where the company headquarters is located). The whole journey took me about 3.5 hours daily! I would meet with the CEO, Karen Routt, in the mornings and she would brief on my tasks for the day. Additionally, she would inform me of times she planned on phone conferencing current and potential investors so that I had the opportunity to sit in on the meetings. Once a week, I met with Marketing Director, Stacey, to plan our social media posts for the upcoming week. We would discuss frequency of posts, content, and website analytics. Stacey and I would also review items such as Elevator Pitches, Pitch Decks, and 1-page information sheets to ensure that our content was always fresh and engaging when we presented it to investors and client prospects.

My experience in San Francisco this past summer showed me that I am very fond of small-team work environments. I had the opportunity to learn from, and work closely with, each department that comprises Magnolia Prime.  Also, since our team was so small, I was able to get personalized attention from each department head whenever I had any questions about my work. I also grew to love San Francisco, and although quite expensive, it is an amazing city and I hope to have the opportunity to work there in the future.

My Internship was unique in the fact that I am still an employee for Magnolia Prime. I signed a contract to do outside consulting work for the company part-time throughout the course of this Fall. I will be working with the CEO, Karen Routt, in formulating ideas to secure funding from potential investors, as well as, researching and creating market competition reports, to ensure that Magnolia Prime is always on its ‘A’ game.

I want to give a special thanks to the Knowlton Center Staff and Denison, for helping me make this Internship possible!

Summer Internship Series: My First Step Into the Real World

Eizo Lang-Ezekiel ’19

University of Toulouse, Toulouse, France

My name is Eizo Lang-Ezekiel, I am a junior and Political Science major with a Spanish minor. This blog post addresses my experience interning with the University of Toulouse in France this past summer. While the title translated to “Intern to help build international partnerships”, I was actually more of a floater in the team I worked in. This 8-person team was in charge of organizing the 2018 EuroScience Open Forum, which is a European biennial event on science and innovation organized by EuroScience. Each edition is held in a different European city and it is scheduled to take place in Toulouse next summer.

My first goal was to develop skills and gain experience in my field, which is Political Science. I had originally planned to double major with International Studies and although I cannot do this, I still want to add an international dimension to my major. My internship helped me gain knowledge on some of the European, French and regional institutions, which could be useful if I go back to work there. It was also a success because I had some tasks relating to international relations. During the most memorable day of my internship, I accompanied one of my supervisors on an international meeting. Three English persons flew to Toulouse to discuss ESOF 2018 and find out more about its logistics. I supported him with my language skills, helped promote ESOF and the city of Toulouse during the day. I also researched international organizations that could be interested in participating in ESOF and contacted them.

My second goal was to have a professional experience that would boost my confidence and prepare me for when I need to look for a job after college (or after grad school). This is the aspect in which my internship was most successful. I was unsure about what to expect going in on my first day and I quickly realized that I was going to have a lot of independence and real responsibilities. This was both challenging and intimidating, but it was a good thing. It allowed me to progress, gain the confidence and approval of my supervisors which made their complements even more satisfying.

Ultimately, aside from what I previously mentioned, the internship was successful because I learned skills that I will be able to apply to my work in college and in my professional life. For instance, I improved my skills with Word and Excel. I also gained experience in fields unrelated to my studies, notably in Communications and Marketing, but I believe this could be useful as well.

Summer Internship Series: A Summer in the Art World

Adriana Kidon ’19
Editorial Intern and Personal Assistant, Musee Magazine, New York, New YorkMusee magazine: vanguard of photography culture

My name is Adriana Kidon and I’m currently a junior student here at Denison studying PPE. This past summer, I had the awesome opportunity of interning at Musee Magazine in New York City. Musee is a photography-based, digital quarterly magazine and website that features works by emerging and established artists. I served as an editorial intern for the magazine as well as a personal assistant for the Editor in Chief, Andrea Blanch, accomplished and prominent commercial and fine art photographer involved most famously with Vogue, Elle, and Rolling Stone magazines.

Working both of these positions simultaneously really helped me learn what I like, do not like, and ultimately, gave me a clearer picture of what I want to do in my future. As a personal assistant, I handled personal and office phone calls/emails, managed calendars and intern schedules, scheduled interviews with potential new hires, and maintained physical and digital database files to ensure office organization. All of these tasks are certainly crucial in order to maintain any publication, but I found that it was not something I enjoyed. I felt my creativity was a bit dulled when I had to spend a day managing mundane organization tasks. On the other hand, I found my spark as an editorial intern. In this position, I worked as a writer and editor for the magazine. I researched emerging and established artists to be featured in future issues and developed new content on photographers, gallery exhibitions, and the current environment of contemporary photography to be published in the quarterly magazine and on the magazine’s website. Additionally, I got the chance to proofread and copy-edit colleagues’ works for grammatical errors and qualitative revisions.

I really found my passion in writing and now know that it is something I’d truly like to go into in some shape or form.

Summer Internship Series: Margie’s Girls

Josie Olschansky ’18
Social Media and PR Intern, Margie Korshak Inc., Chicago, IllinoisMargie korshak inc. logo

My name is Josie Olschansky and I am a senior creative writing major. This summer I interned at a PR firm called Margie Korshak Inc. located in Chicago, Illinois. Margie Korshak is a boutique PR agency that has been around for over 50 years. It started out as the only PR firm in the city and opened everything on Michigan Avenue from Bloomingdales, to Sax Fifth Avenue, to restaurants, to Chanel. Margie Korshak, the founder and CEO of the company, is someone who still has an enormous amount of respect and prestige within the industry. I was most impressed by the fact that even though she is eighty years old she still comes into the office every single day!

I have had a number of PR / marketing internships but it was truly an honor to get to work for Margie. During my time there I was a social media and PR intern, which meant that I created and scheduled social media for our various clients. As an intern, I wrote posts on multiple platforms for clients, remodeled the company’s Media Kit, drafted and edited press releases and post releases for companies such as Krispy Kreme, interviewed and selected four new fall interns, and I developed and organized copious media lists.

I definitely learned a lot throughout my experience and acquired tools and skills that I hope to bring with me wherever I end up after graduation. The absolute best part of my internship was the other interns that I become close with. We spent so much time together that we truly became friends; we called ourselves “Margie’s Girls” and we had lunch together every day outside the building. That hour of lunch was the perfect escape from the business of the office. My summer went by so fast that before I knew it I was packing my things to come home.