By Caroline Babinski, College of the Holy Cross Class of 2020
As a junior at a small liberal arts college in Massachusetts, I definitely felt some culture shock when I moved to New York in January to begin working at Elle Magazine as a Marketing Intern. If you were to read my resume you would see that I have former experience at an internship in Washington DC and involvement with my college’s student government. While all of these experiences might not easily add up to a marketing internship at a fashion magazine, I was able to use my school’s Career Center and interview tips to portray my experiences and skills in a way that showed I was qualified for an internship at Elle.
So far, my time at Elle has given me so many invaluable learning experiences, the chance to work in a really cool building (shoutout Hearst Tower!) and tons of free books and makeup products from the “free” table in the office. Some of my daily tasks include researching influencers, compiling images from past issues of Elle, and helping my supervisors with Elle events!
Being able to see the business side of a huge print magazine has been an amazing experience for an English major like me who knew nothing about marketing before starting this internship. I’ve learned a lot about what it means to be an intern along the way, so here are some of my tips for college interns:
Get to know people as soon and as often as possible
I have made it a priority to get to know people in my office early in my internship so that I can build lasting relationships and learn more about different positions that make up the team at Elle. It is also super important to meet new people outside of your office while you’re interning. I’ve learned so much about different professions from reaching out to alumni from my college and meeting them for coffee. Use any connections you have to form relationships.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
It’s easy to think that if I am asking my supervisor multiple questions about a project that I am bothering them, but I have found that it’s better to do things correctly than have to go back and make corrections after I’ve already done the work.
Get to know the city you are in
Being able to live in New York City has been a dream come true, and I have been taking advantage of every opportunity to explore new areas of the city (and eating a lot of fun foods along the way!) If know you only have a short time in New York, live it up as much as you can. My love for this city is only more motivation for me to move back here one day.
Know your worth and be proud of your accomplishments
As an intern who is still in school, it’s easy to feel intimidated and like you can’t speak for yourself. While it’s so important to be respectful in your office, make sure you speak in a way that is powerful and professional. Try to remove the word “just” from your vocabulary. Don’t write an email that says “I just wanted to ask a question,” but rather “I have a question about this assignment.” Also, while I know that I am so privileged to be given the opportunity to spend a semester in New York, I will never say that I am “lucky” to have gotten this internship. My past experiences and skills make me deserving of this opportunity.
Remember where you come from (and do it with style!)
Last semester I studied abroad in Cork, Ireland which means that I am currently spending my entire junior year away from Holy Cross. I have been able to stay grounded and able to remember the comforts of my campus every day by wearing my KYLE CAVAN Holy Cross Florentine necklace. This reminds me to strive to live my school’s mission in everything that I do, and that I will always have my campus community to welcome me home with open arms.