This blog post was started in February, at the start of my first internship. The tips offered are ones I’ve found helpful through the entirety of my internship experience.

As I finally get settled into the first internship of my advertising career, I’ve spent some time reflecting on what I’ve done right (and wrong) thus far. Within this post, I’ll provide some of the most important things I’ve learned, in hopes to inspire at least one of you as you start your internship journey.

  1. Intern somewhere you could picture yourself working. You’re going to be spending nearly 200 hours at this internship over the course of a semester. Those hours will drag on if you’re not at least somewhat interested in the work you’re doing or the company you’re interning with.
  2. Dress to impress. It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: no matter what you’ve heard about the dress code of a company, ALWAYS wear business attire to your initial interview. Additionally, after landing the internship, I still recommend putting in effort with your appearance at your new internship, even if everyone in your office is wearing jeans and tee shirts. While you don’t have to show up every day in a suit, take care in wearing clothes that are clean and fit well, and stick to dressy casual attire. That little bit of effort goes a long way, and I promise it won’t go over looked by your boss.
  3. Stay busy. I always assumed I’d be overwhelmed with assignments, errands, and work to do at an internship. While I’m given a lot to do, I usually finish those all of my assignments before there’s something new for me to work on. It’s moments like those that could make or break any possible future position I may have with this company. If you pay close attention, you’ll likely notice very early on that you’ll be assigned something to work on that will help your team in the future. For example, on my second day, I was asked to fill in a social media content spreadsheet for the year with national holidays or interesting articles. I was also told to make corresponding graphics. Now, whenever I finished my assignments and there isn’t anything immediately available for me to work on, I turn to that spreadsheet and get working! Find something on your own to work on or ask what you can help with. Under no circumstances should you just wait to be given more work, and DO NOT take out your phone.
  4. Bring lunch from home. Your internship will likely be in the city, surrounded by delicious smelling food carts and interesting little shops. While eating out every day may satisfy your taste buds, it’s sure to devastate your wallet very quickly.

Check back soon for a post with more tips as I conclude my first internship!