By: Amoni Lewis
As a journalism major at Lincoln University, I am required to complete a professional internship. In the spring of 2020, I began working at the Missouri Chamber of Commerce, a Jefferson City-based non-profit organization supporting and enhancing businesses within the state of Missouri. The internship is relevant to my journalism degree because the Chamber possesses a communications department, which publishes (among other things) the Missouri Business magazine. The internship will help me gain valuable professional networking and journalism experience beyond the classroom.
How Did I Get Recommended?
My journalism professor, Will Sites, recommended the internship. A former student of his, currently works at the Chamber, informed him of the opportunity. The process to apply was easy. I wrote a cover letter explaining my abilities, attributes as a college student, and then attached my resume. Less than a month later, the chief operating officer called me for an interview. I was aware that obtaining this position was competitive – which made me quite nervous – but I continued to be positive. Two weeks after the interview, I was hired. I am grateful for having the opportunity to gain experience in a real-world setting.
My job at the Chamber consists of working at the front desk and completing projects. The projects range from conducting research to organizing information. I expect to learn a lot from working as an intern, not only skills that involve journalism, but also things that could benefit me in life – professionalism, work ethic, independence, and networking.
The Importance of Networking
Before starting college, the single best piece of advice I received concerned networking. “Networking will lead to opportunities and opportunities will lead to success,” is what my mom likes to tell me. The most important factor of networking is interacting and communicating with peers. It is easy for me to connect with my professors because Lincoln University students and professors often interact within the LU campus. It’s important to build relationships with professors. By doing so, students become more comfortable asking for help, succeeding in academics, and utilizing the relationships beyond graduation.
In conclusion, seize the opportunities and remain positive. Internships and networking are important for your future career path.