By Matt Caplan
It was not easy to obtain a Summer internship this year due to the pandemic. Therefore, I had to work extra hard to do my research and obtain an internship that would be beneficial to my career-oriented goals as well as provide me with a valuable learning experience. This past Summer, I was very lucky to virtually serve as a Public Relations intern at SCG Advertising and Public Relations (Success Communications Group) and I had an exceptional experience with a number of valuable skills learned in the PR industry.
Michael Cherenson, the Executive Vice President of SCG, was a past Chairman & CEO of the Public Relations Society of America and has a substantial amount of connections in the industry. I was lucky enough to sit-in on internal meetings with him and get to know him on a professional level. Him along with his other colleagues made me and the other interns feel very welcome and comfortable to ask them any type of questions that we had.
In addition to working with Mike Cherenson, I worked directly with Alexa Cangialosi, a PR Account Executive and the director of interns. She gave me and the other interns a number of daily tasks, including writing news releases, creating social media content, research related to client projects, and creating media lists. This helped me widely expand my knowledge and skills in the Public Relations industry and will allow me to feel confident to enter the workforce with what I gained this past Summer. In addition to these tasks, I got a first-hand review on my resume and LinkedIn to make sure it is perfect as I enter my last year of college and prepare to have a career.
As well as serving as a Public Relations intern for SCG, I also was a participant of the PR-Council Agency Ready Certificate Program, which gave me incredible insight on what it is like to work for a PR agency as well as a number of great connections. Due to the pandemic, the PR-Council set this up to help young talent gain insight from top PR professionals. The program went in-depth in subjects such as earned media, client service, giving presentations and pitches, good research, press release distribution and storytelling, crisis communication, building your brand, professional growth, and public affairs. These are all great subjects to learn about as a college student and I would recommend being on the lookout for this program next Summer for those who did not complete it.
I feel fortunate that I was able to use my time wisely during a pandemic Summer, and I can confidently say that I am going into my senior year ready to enter the workforce and take this giant next step in my life. As long as you put yourself out there, you can achieve your aspirations and secure that internship that you have desired. Connect with everybody you speak with on LinkedIn and send thank you emails to any presenter that you attend. SCG and the PR-Council made it much easier for me to make connections during a Summer of social distancing and staying six-feet apart.