I just finished an internship at a magazine publication in New York City. As a student journalist at Azusa Pacific University, located in Azusa, California, I never imagined my first internship being across the world. Upon completing my sophomore year, I was eager to take advantage of as many offered opportunities as possible. It all started the day I went into our school’s study abroad office to see if there was a place of belonging for journalism majors. To my surprise, there was. Within twenty-four hours, I applied for the New York Semester in Journalism Program. What I found unique about the program was their guaranteed 6-credit internship along with three journalism courses. A few weeks before my departure to NYC, I was sent a survey that would better assist the directors of the program in matching me with an internship that would accommodate m interests.
To my surprise, I was chosen to intern for a niche magazine called the Emergency Physicians International (EPI). EPI focuses on global emergency care development with a targeted audience of emergency care physicians. Since I wasn’t at all familiar with the topic and didn’t know much about the world of healthcare, I was absolutely terrified. Fast forward three months and I have grown tremendously. In fact, it is because of this experience alone that I have grown to be a better thinker, researcher and not to mention, journalist. I like to believe that I learned more about the benefits of internships than what was intended for me to learn about EPI’s company. What I found the most helpful in my internship experience was how my publisher assisted me in developing my writing skills. He saw areas in which I needed to improve and invested in them. He even gave me tasks that would adhere to other careers within the realm of journalism, like editorial work. With his help, I was able to walk away with an open mind to other career opportunities and possibilities.
I came to New York City in hopes of receiving confirmation that I was headed in the right direction in terms of being a long term print journalist, but this experience has taught me that I may have a nick for editing instead. If you are unsure of what career path you wish to travel down, think of what you’re good at. If writing is your talent, don’t just look for internships that’ll adhere to that alone. Get one that will allow you to write upon doing other things that will help you in further exploring other career options. As for being successful in your internship, it all starts with distinguishing what you can do from what you cannot do. If you can’t do something that is asked of you, study the ins and outs of it until you’re no longer in need of assistance with it. In the things that you can do, be sure to let your light shine. Remember, you are a work in progress and the opportunities are endless.