We’ve all been there…a recent college graduate, drowning in student loan debt with no form of income, all while learning what it means to be a functional adult. If this is currently you, don’t worry…there is hope yet.
According to LinkedIn’s latest Workforce Report, the U.S. is currently looking to fill 230,000 marketing positions ranging from social media to communications to digital designers. This means that there are opportunities calling your name. And coupled with the fact that 65 percent of employers prefer graduates with relevant work experience, now is the time to apply for an internship.
If you recently graduated college with a journalism, marketing or communications degree and have zero work experience, don’t fret. An internship is a great way to get your foot in the door of a big-name agency. If you are currently in college, even better. Get internship experience now to set yourself up for a successful career launch once you graduate. Here’s why internships, especially in the marketing field, are essential:
Skills, skills and more skills
Ready to make stacks of cash? Then you better start stacking your skills. Your college degree is a necessary accolade to even be considered for a job; but, it’s not the be all end all. Beyond your degree, employers prioritize the relevant skills you’ve collected in past work experience. If you don’t have past work experience and you’re applying for an internship, focus on the skills you’ve acquired in school projects.
In today’s marketing world, employers are seeking out “full stack marketers.” Instead of focusing on specific marketing disciplines, such as SEO or content marketing, full stack marketers are knowledgeable about all practices in the marketing “stack”: public relations, marketing and digital. Because of this, it’s crucial to find an internship that will offer you opportunities to learn a variety of different marketing skills. The more skills that you have in your marketing stack, the more hirable you are.
Interning is a great mechanism for discovering your strengths, interests and passions. As a college student or recent grad, you often hear people say that you should find a job you love, and it’ll feel like you’ve never worked a day in your life. The fact of the matter is that this doesn’t always happen…at first. When you graduate college, you’re still trying to figure out how your skills and strengths can make a positive difference in the work force. How will you discover your passions and talents? By exercising them and by putting them to the test in an internship. I personally believe that your passions follow mastery, not the other way around. As you exercise your skills and interests, you’ll eventually discover your passions.
Be in interviewer, not the interviewee
When you are interning, it’s easy to take on the perspective that each day you work is an interview in and of itself. That your performance as an intern determines whether or not you’ll be hired on as an entry level employee. Yes, you should put forth your best work as an intern in order to give yourself the best possible outcomes: a promotion to entry level or a strong recommendation letter for the next job application. But, you should also think of your internship as a chance for you to interview the company. In the same way that the company is evaluating if you’re the right fit for their teams, you have to determine if this company is the right fit for you. Are you exercising your strengths? Is there potential for personal growth? Do you work well with your team? Is there opportunity for mentorship? These are all valid questions you should ask yourself throughout your internship experience.
If you are a current college student or a recent graduate, getting an internship is a proactive step to launching a successful career. Start collecting skills, discover what you’re good at, hone your craft and make a difference in the field of marketing. You could be the fresh perspective that a company is looking for. All you have to do is start applying.
Interesting in starting your career at LEWIS? See our current associate opportunities.
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