This fall, I am fortunate enough to be interning in the public affairs department at CBS3 Philly. At first, I was extremely nervous because I had no idea what to expect, and the idea of working for one of the biggest television broadcasting networks in the city was very intimidating. But of course I planned on putting a very high level of enthusiasm and 110% into every project that was given to me. I had no idea what I was going to be working on, but I mean interning at CBS sounds so cool so they must have really cool stuff for me to work on, right? Wrong!
Before my supervisor gave me my first project, she said, “We’re not going to be friends”. What she meant by that was I would be typing up the FCC (Federal Communications Commission) Report which is a quarterly compilation of all the stories the news department reported on in the past three months. And essentially this would make me hate her. But I just laughed it off, thinking that I was just so happy and grateful to be interning at CBS that I would be more than willing to do any project.
But here I am, three and a half weeks later and finally done with those stupid reports! Granted, it’s not like I was sitting at the computer eight hours a day for two days a week just typing away. I did get to do some pretty cool stuff like sit in on meetings, assist in the planning of an event called “Lights for the Cure”, attend the event, and meet some of the talent when I was asked to run errands to the studio or newsroom. However, the FCC reports consumed the majority of my time and I started to feel a little discouraged. I started feeling more like a secretary than an intern and a not very good one at that. The report was about thirty pages but I felt like I was taking too long.
I finally finished the report and sent it to my supervisor. The first thing I did was apologize that it took so long for me to complete. Her response? “Honestly, I think that you are the fastest intern to finish the report.” I was shocked. After she edited what I sent her, she came over to me and told me she wanted to hug me. She said that I’m the first intern in a long time that handed her a report where she barely had to edit anything. Then coincidentally, one of her former interns texted her saying the next lesson in her public relations class is on FCC Reports. This made me realize so much! First of all, I didn’t feel like a secretary anymore because if it’s being taught in a PR class, it is relevant to my field. Also, the FCC Reports are very important because they prove that the station is doing its job of keeping the public informed and they allow the station to maintain their license.
So far I’ve learned that not everything is going to be super glamorous, but there is a reason why I’m doing it. Now I feel a lot less discouraged and excited to start a new project. Unless it’s another report of course, but even then I’d still do it with a smile on my face.