An internship is the first building block to a successful career. So you want to make a great first impression.
It's amazing how much can change in just a few short years. When I was in college, I had to take a course on resume and cover letting writing. And while at the time, it seemed like a useless time suck, I am so glad that I made myself sit through it. Whenever I applied for a job or internship, I made sure my cover letter was in the body of the email and my resume was attached, and sometimes I also included underneath my signature.
What I love about being in the communications field was how creative I got to be with my resume. I got to go against the norm and play with the design and color.
Fast forward past several internships, a stint in field markets, a few promotions and agency changes, I am now the proud CEO of Lynette Nicole PR. My baby is only 6 months old and has a lot of growing to do but I am fortunate to have enough work to need an intern.
When I was hiring interns or team members at other jobs, I received some of the greatest candidates and applications. Everyone wrote a little note even if wasn't a full blown cover letter and send their resume, attached or in the body. Later on in my career, I got to work with one of those interns (now an AE) and one of the firms I was at.
I posted on various websites and Facebook groups for an intern and got mostly crickets. And if I didn't get crickets, I got blank emails with attachments! Who are you? What is attached? Why should I open the attachments? To be fair, I did receive a few candidates who wrote clear and concise cover letters and sent resumes, but for the most part, I was shocked.
To the new generation of college students, interns and entry level employees- professionalism is not dead. You may read a company is laid back, fun, young and hip, but that doesn't mean you don't have to make a solid first impression.
If you can find the person who you are contacting, include their name. If you are reaching out to an info@ address, at least wrote the CEO's name if you know there isn't an HR person. It shows you did your research regarding the firm.
Tell me about yourself and your relative experience. Tell me what experiences the courses you are taking are giving you. Are you on your schools PR team? Tell me! Why are you a fit for my firm? Did you read that we specialize in consumer lifestyle and not government relations? Tell me what makes you different than other candidates.
I still have hope that professors will take a class or two to go over applying to jobs and internships because I just know there is a smart bunch of kids out there who are ready to kick ass in PR.
Also, if you're reading this and are looking for an internship in NYC, please please email me at LynetteNicolePR@gmail.com.
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