Reaching Out: A Lesson from Lauren Berger
This blog post was written by Spring 2012 Intern and Campus Ambassador, Alicia Valko. Alicia is a junior at Towson University with a major in Mass Communication and a minor in Italian.
I have been a Campus Ambassador for over a year and a half and this semester I was lucky enough to land a spring internship with the Intern Queen. As my internship comes to an end, I am reflecting on the lessons I’ve learned from the Intern Queen herself – Lauren Berger.
Prior to interning with Lauren, I was confident in my ability to reach out to people for advice or guidance regarding my career goals. I loved reaching out to new people that would potentially sit down with for an informational interview or help me get an internship – but that’s just me.
However, this is not true of a vast majority of my peers. I’ve come to realize that my generation is terrified of reaching out to strangers – and isn’t that as a result of our parents warning us about “stranger danger?” While that is a great lesson for kids, our generation now needs to be taught how to reach out as professionals.
Although I have learned SO much in the past 4 months of interning, I feel that the most important skill Lauren has instilled in me is the confidence to reach out – to anyone. Reaching out to clients, journalists, potential collaborators, etc. is an essential part of my internship with Intern Queen, and it is a skill that is required for my future career in PR. Luckily, I’ve been able to refine that skill, but I find that many college students still struggle.
So I’d like to leave my internship with these words of advice, which are helpful to anyone in any situation, but have particular significance for interns. Figure out what you want and learn how to ask for it. You’d be surprised by how many people truly want to help you.