Why Interning for a Smaller Company Can Be Better

By: Samantha Lassen, Account Associate for In-Home Services of Central PA

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Image Credit: National Geographic

This past summer, I commuted almost six hours a day in order to intern at a public relations agency in New York City. Although it was extremely difficult and exhausting at times, I learned more than I could have ever imagined as an intern. I worked at Lippe Taylor, a public relations and digital marketing agency, in their beauty, consumer and healthcare departments. The agency, located in Union Square, fills up a floor on Park Ave in the heart of the city. This agency was a lot smaller than many others that I originally applied to last spring and I was hesitant to accept my offer because not many people recognized the name. I always pictured myself at a large firm rather than a boutique agency. However, acknowledging the amazing opportunity presented to me, I fully emerged myself into the summer at Lippe Taylor and it was the best decision I could have made.

Due to the intimate nature of the agency, I was able to able to fully emerge myself into the professional environment. Ten interns, including myself, were scattered across the office where we sat between top executives and vice-presidents of the agency. I was able to observe, learn and get to know most of the employees. I was comfortable approaching them with any questions or problems that I had. I felt like I was fully immersed within the daily office routine and I got to see first-hand how an agency operates on a day-to-day basis.

My mentor and other account coordinators would give me daily and weekly tasks that pushed me far more than any class has. I put together product and media send outs for brand campaigns, complied weekly media placements and monthly reports for clients, and I assisted and attended consumer events for media around the city. In addition, the company allowed interns to attend client calls and pitch meetings. The intern work was similar to the work of an entry-level position at the agency. This allowed me to get a comprehensive view of what I could potentially be doing when I graduate.

Although I was hesitant at first, having my first agency experience with a smaller firm gave me more opportunities than I could ask for. The interns were respected and given daily feedback, especially when we presented our end of summer projects to the entire firm. I enjoyed seeing my contributions being noticed and utilized. I would suggest anyone contemplating an internship to check out a smaller firm or boutique agency. I learned that sometimes smaller is better and the experience provided is more valuable than size.

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