How-to Advice for Internship Success -- Rayna Qin

MediaVillage Education Foundation
Cover image for  article: How-to Advice for Internship Success -- Rayna Qin

The spring semester of my junior year was a very special one for me as I attended the Newhouse NYC program, which provided me with a unique opportunity to step out of Syracuse and experience a new lifestyle in New York City. What I found most appealing about this program was the chance to have an internship during the semester, which could help me bolster my resume and stand out in a competitive job market. With the help of the program manager, I secured an internship as a data analytics intern at MediaVillage.

Despite being an advertising major, I have always held a strong interest on data analytics and wanted to learn more about this field. The internship in MediaVillage was exactly what I needed. This experience offered me the chance to gain practical experience in data analysis and learn about e-mail marketing. During my time at MediaVillage, I was able to acquire new skills and knowledge that will undoubtedly be useful in my future career.

Aside from the internship, the program also provided many opportunities to expand students' networks, such as career conversations with alumni, HR panels, alumni office hours, and field trips to visit media companies. Additionally, each student was paired with a mentor, typically a Newhouse alumnus who matched the student's major. These mentors were always available to answer questions and offer advice based on their own experiences. All these events provided me with excellent opportunities to build my network and deepen my understanding of the industry.

Now that the semester and the internship have come to an end, I would like to share some tips that will make your internship more successful.

First, always show your passion and gratitude towards your assignments. As an intern, you may be given some entry-level work that may be tedious. But, regardless of how small a task may seem, always approach it with enthusiasm and a positive attitude. Show that you are eager to learn and make contributions. Consider these small tasks as a test because if you cannot perform the easy ones well, your supervisor may not give you more challenging projects.

Second, check in with your supervisor regularly, especially if the internship is remote. Instead of waiting for them to ask for the status of a task, inform them when you receive a task and tell them that you are currently working on it. This helps to ensure that you are on the right track and that your work is meeting expectations. If you are struggling with a task, don't hesitate to ask for help or clarification. It is better to address any issues early on rather than waiting until the last minute when it may be too late to make changes.

Third, keep an internship journal. It may include your daily tasks and reflections throughout the day or week. When you complete the internship and look back, you will feel proud of yourself for what you have accomplished during this period. Additionally, the journal can help you remember the tasks you have performed, which will be helpful when you add this experience on your resume. If you are doing some creative work, you can even add your assignment to your portfolio.

Finally, learn to maintain your network, which is an essential part of building a successful career. You can write a thank you note to your supervisors and others who helped you during your internship, showing them that you value the experience gained and their generous help. Don't be afraid to reach out and make them aware of any new positions or achievements. I believe they will be happy to hear from you and see how you have grown!

Becoming a New Yorker for a semester was an unparalleled experience. As I reflect on my time in the city, I am amazed at how much I have grown, both personally and professionally. I am grateful to everyone who joined me on this journey, making it possible and special. The memories and lessons I gained from this incredible experience will stay with me forever.

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