In fall 2017, I was a senior in the English department with no idea what kind of internship I’d be able to find for my upcoming final semester–only that I should find one, because everyone says an internship is worth its weight in gold on your resume, right?
As you search for internships, ask yourself: What would stimulate my mind and imagination enough to do something for the love of it—paycheck or, more likely, no paycheck? For me, that was and is writing. A quick google search informed me that one of North Carolina’s most beloved publications, Our State magazine, is headquartered right here in Greensboro. I knew without a doubt that if ever there was a magazine I wanted to write for, it was this one.
Few experiences in college have impacted me as much to this day as interning at Our State did. After submitting a resume, cover letter, writing samples, and a sample article pitch, I interviewed with two of the editors, and was offered the position the following day. From low-level administrative tasks such as archiving the magazine digitally to writing a timeline on the history of North Carolina surfing that ran alongside the June 2018 feature articles, my time with this magazine was life-changing.
Now, I’m a freelance writer for Our State. No longer in the masthead as “Editorial Intern,” I get to see my name featured in the list of “Contributing Writers.” If you’re also a writer, you know exactly how gratifying that is. And although I can’t be totally sure, I have a hunch that the recommendation letter one of my editors wrote for me was a big help in securing my current job—which I love—as an editorial assistant at J&J Editorial in Cary.
You might be anxious or uncertain about contacting companies and getting those interviews scheduled. But trust me, you have nothing to lose and so much to gain. Employers are impressed by young people who put themselves out there and make the case for why they should be hired. Remember: Someone out there wants you. Don’t let yourself be the one to hold you back from your potential.