Summer Intern Survival Kit

All three of us got our start as interns, whether right out of college, or working during our junior and senior years of college. After many months of media lists, last-minute events and drafting pitches, we learned the tools we simply could not live without, those that were a waste of time, and those that we needed on a daily (if not hourly) basis. Below are our picks for the Summer Intern Survival Kit:

A Journal – Whether you’ve graduated or you are starting a summer internship during your season off, a personal journal is a must during your time as an intern.   Keep this journal separate from your work notebooks and to-do lists, preferably at your apartment or dorm. Each night, write a new skill you learned that day, or something you could have done better had you prepared yourself ahead of time.   This journal will not only be precious as you look back at your time as an intern, but it will be a great help when constructing your resume and practicing for interviews.

A PR Girl Wardrobe – Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.

Headphones – Once you get the hang of things, these are a saving grace when creating media lists and tuning out noise of others pitching or conference calls, especially in a small space.

iPhone or iPod – Though not a MUST, the iPhone is great for quickly collecting contacts, showing off your Twitter account in an interview, or jotting down event materials lists.   Google Maps, Yelp and HopStop apps are also all lifesavers if it’s your first time navigating in your intern city.

Sky-High Heels – Though you may have dreams of being one of “The Clackers,” heels just simply aren’t reasonable when running errands or stuffing gift bags. Your supervisors won’t appreciate you moving slowly because your feet hurt. Save the killer shoes for events or the office holiday party.

Emotional Baggage – Yes, girls love to talk, and none more than the PR girl. One of the best lessons I was taught was to keep your personal life personal in the business world. Feel free to share fun experiences with your coworkers, but there is no reason to commiserate with the office after you sloppily hooked up with your now-gay ex-boyfriend when you were drunk on Saturday.   Yes, they will judge you for it.

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