Last week, more than 85 interns from thirteen top PR agencies in New York came together to hear from industry professionals about their day-to-day lives and experiences working in communications. Interns had the opportunity to hear from professionals in agencies specializing in consumer, tech., healthcare and sports PR, as well as the opportunity to mingle with these leaders and other interns.
Standing in that room with dozens of young, eager students, I couldn’t help but feel intimidated. Every student at the event had similar goals — to someday work for a PR agency. As a college intern myself, I stood there wondering what would set me apart from the rest of the crowd. Most importantly, I wondered what I could give to the industry. What about my experiences or perspective makes me valuable to an agency?
Through hearing industry professionals speak and talking to other students, one thing became increasingly clear: the PR industry needs millennial voices in their agencies to reach consumers.
As young professionals preparing to work in PR, we must recognize our personal strengths and what we can give to the industry. Our world is changing, and now more than ever, communications agencies need young talent who can help navigate our evolving, digital world.
Young talent can give PR agencies much needed fresh ideas and creative insights. Additionally, we can give perspective on prominent social issues and uses of technology. We sometimes have a greater ability to put pop culture into context and allow brands and companies to know when and how to speak on social issues.
It’s natural to become overwhelmed in a large, professional industry like PR, but we must see that our voices are valuable.
Internships are a great opportunity for students to find not only their strengths but also what they love to do.
To give advice to fellow interns, use this time and the resources you have to learn what you can give to the industry and where your place is within it. In an ever-evolving industry, we have the opportunity to enter and make a true impact. If you’re lucky enough to be in the same room as agency leaders and influencers, take that opportunity and make yourself known. Stand out among the crowd to showcase all that you have to offer the industry.