What Advice Would You Share with These College Students?

the-graduates

Next week I’m sitting down with a handful of PR students from Iowa State University who are currently taking an online writing/content management class. We’re going to chat about the ways social media has changed/is changing how brands market themselves and interact with consumers, as well as blogging basics.

Another topic of discussion will be tips on landing their first jobs and how to stand out and succeed early in their careers. I’d like your help with this portion. What advice would you share with these future professionals to help them succeed in PR, Marketing, Digital strategy and so on?

Here are three of the tips I’m going to pass along. They may be a bit evergreen, but some sage advice never changes.

Hustle – That’s the way to set yourself apart early on in your career. Of course, I’m assuming you’re smart and can carry a conversation. That goes without saying.

Lots of people meet expectations. Hustle will drive you to exceed them. Make one more pitch call. Think of one new idea for your client each month. Raise your hand to join the fun when new projects come in the door. Don’t be obnoxious, of course. There’s a balance. Find it and hustle!

Networking – Networking is the one of the important ways to both land a job and succeed in this business. When I was in college, networking was limited to people you could physically meet – in college, at local PRSA meetings, at career fairs, etc.

Today, networking is on steroids. It’s never been easier to meet and develop relationships with amazing professionals from across the country – and the globe – thanks to tools like Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook. There is no excuse not to be using them. These relationships are priceless when looking for a job. Even after you’re employed, continuing to engage with your connections gives you access to ongoing advice and points of view, which are beneficial throughout your career.

Internships – These have become a given, but I’m surprised that I still meet so many students who’ve had no internships or only one internship. Not only are internships a must, but more than one is a must. I’m not taking anything away from the classroom, but actual experience is where you really start learning the ins and outs of this business.

Actually, I think PR, advertising and digital communications are a bit like the types of careers folks had back in the colonial days – apprenticeships. A basic foundation learned in the classroom is important, but you’ve got to get your hands dirty to pick up the craft. Go get your hands dirty.

Your turn. What would you share with these bright, young minds? I’ll point them to this post and your advice while we’re chatting Tuesday.

*Image by Gusi Lu.

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40 responses to “What Advice Would You Share with These College Students?

  1. Great advice above…

    One thing i would advise, which might sound crazy to a young kid graduating with loads of student loan debt, is to try not to worry about what a position pays but rather look at the type of experiences you will gain from your first job/internship.

    Odds are you won’t be raking it in with that first position anyway and the relationships and experience you gain in those first positions could pay off in the future.

  2. Good stuff. I think the internship is often overlooked in favor of a job offering money. Trust me, the more experience (i.e. internships) you have, the faster you move up and the more likely you are to make up that money in earnings from your career. Those unpaid internships are often far more valuable in terms of level of experience.

    My two cents:
    1. Don’t Lie – Probably 10 or 12 years ago, you could get away with a few white lies on your resume. Now – don’t even try it. You will be found out. I was an internship coordinator and we’d check on resumes and found people who hadn’t actually graduated from college or hadn’t had that impressive internship or even worse – they did and were fired from it and didn’t note that in their resume or cover letter. With all of the ways to research people online, it isn’t worth the risk.

    2. Ignore the Hate – I’m sure you know by now that millenials are not exactly a loved generation. There are lots of people who hold stereotypes about the generation that are largely unfounded. Ignore the hate. Don’t respond to it or try to combat it with words. Put your head down, contribute and show that those negative stereotypes are wrong with your work.

    Nice post David.

  3. The one thing I wish someone had told me earlier: reach out to mentors. Not even just one, but as many as you can find. Peers as well as those whose careers are following paths that interest you.

    There is no substitute for learning – in real words – about the experiences in the trenches of others in your industry. And in addition to the networking factor, having mentors around you dramatically reduces the learning curve and may help you avoid missteps that others have already learned hard lessons from. 🙂

    And be a little fearless. It can be intimidating to reach out to people who are well known in your industry, but it never, ever hurts to ask. Most people are more than happy to share their knowledge and experience, because they believe in surrounding themselves with a new flood of smart, talented workers in their space. We all want to work with esteemed colleagues, and many execs love to share their experiences with those that are just getting started.

    And the short but honest advice: Go For It. You get one ride around on this rock. Don’t let self doubt ever, ever make decisions for you. I’ve taken big risks in my career at times, and nothing amazing has ever happened by observing and wondering what might have been.

  4. Great post, David. Here are a few ideas:

    – Learn to write, really well, without errors. This is a minimum required to advance and is fundamental online and in PR generally.

    – Figure out ways to make your manager’s life easier.

    – Don’t assume you know more than me about social media or the Internet just because I’m 20 years older than you. You might, but you might not.

    – Do figure out what you don’t know and can learn from more experienced colleagues, managers and others.

    – Do interesting things outside of work and school – go abroad, volunteer, compete, create.

    – I know you want to advance fast and be recognized. Fine. That means you need to perform at a high enough level to justify that.

  5. I agree with Ryan – my first job in PR was way below what I could actually live on. I bit the bullet, lived with my parents for a year and put in “hard time” at that first job. I have never regretted it – before too long I was getting decent increases and able to move out.

    Other advice – definitely play up social media/web2.0 competencies on your resume if that’s an area of interest or expertise for you. I’m amazed when I get a PR resume from someone I know is web-savvy and their resume doesn’t mention it anywhere. Fluency in social media and the web2.0 world is a huge differentiator and something agencies and hiring managers are looking for more and more, so don’t be afraid to play it up if you fit that bill.

  6. I feel pretty strongly about this topic, and have written about it before (http://is.gd/22ph is just one example).

    My main piece of advice is: Be Prepared. The job market is so soft right now, you must work well in advance of your graduation (and your job interview) to create a reputation online for being connected, caring, and savvy. I will Google you. What will I find?

    Nowadays finding “nothing” is almost as bad as finding your keg-party pics on Google.

  7. Being in that position just a short while ago (May ’08 graduate) there’s plenty of advice/things I wish I knew.

    First, interview as much as you can and don’t get discouraged. I had a list and landed plenty of interviews. It was discouraging not hearing back or hearing months/weeks later. But in the end, I got to learn about the PR industry and what each agency was like. I also have a lot more business cards.

    Always remember the Thank you note. In this day, a personalized thank you note after an interview is much better than an e-mail.

    Facebook. It can be your friend or your enemy. Be smart about it. Both my current bosses are on it, which means they aren’t the only bosses out there with Facebook accounts. Treat facebook like you’d want your mother to see it. Don’t put up pictures from your Friday night activities (or atleast make them private!). Also use it to network. Find classmates in your field and see where they are working or have interned at.

    Use your college experience. I went to a school paying $46,000 a year. I used every penny to get as much as I could out of that school. I joined activities that not only helped with networking but created essential skills that I use today. On a team or in a group? That will be very similar to the workplace. Using your experience there in answering interview questions is great!

    Lastly, which I had no idea about when I was in college, learn social media and understand it. If you’re lucky, your college is teaching you already. Social media goes way beyond public relations and having a grasp on it makes you a better candidate.

    Good Luck!
    @BostonKate

  8. For the job seekers: Interview, Interview, Go to a party, Hit the Library, Go to class and Interview some more!

    Pick target companies, find out who works there (LinkedIn, PRSA, etc), reach out and if there aren’t any open positions, setup informational interviews.

    When you go, don’t mince words. If you’re coming out of school and you’re contacting me for the first time, I can probably guess that you want a job, so come right out and express your interest (after we’ve had a good conversation). Even if there aren’t any positions open at the moment, I probably know someone else who has a few, but I have to know that you’re serious.

    If nothing else comes out of it, at least you’ve got a connection with that person, their perspective and a sense of what it’s like on the inside of that company.

    For the employed: Nights and weekends may be in your future, but it’s worth it if you produce an amazing piece of work. You’ll become known for great work and dedication. Can’t beat that.

    Share your great ideas in brainstorms, but before you share them, think about how your idea can be implemented. Walking people through the process will show that you are a strategic thinker.

    Know what’s new in your industry. Read trades, go to industry meetings, join twitter (especially for the digital folks!). Bring those insights (don’t forget the implementation part) back to your supervisors. If they’re smart, they’ll appreciate it and take note.

  9. Don’t rule out taking a job that isn’t exactly what you dreamed of for a short bit. If you can’t afford to take a free internship, or your perfect job isn’t available, consider finding another type of entry level position in an agency. It’s amazing what kind of experience you can garner as receptionist, file clerk, etc.

    I started my career in PR somewhat non-traditionally. I was on the 10-year college plan, working my way through to pay for it. Three years before I graduated, I stumbled upon a receptionist job at a PR agency. I was able to do my homework on the job while learning the tricks of the trade from masters.

    I was soon promoted to a position where I edited and proofed all the agency’s press materials, helped create new business presentations and sat in some client meetings. Just before obtaining my degree, I was made Asst. Acct. Exec.

    Now, as recent college grads, these kids aren’t in the same position, but in this economy, jobs will be hard to find. Keeping your eyes open for hidden opportunities will go a long way.

    How lucky these kids are to hear your great advice. And Mark’s call out for writing skills, are a must!

  10. I agree with your three. Here’s a couple more for new grads:
    – Be adaptable: there’s a lot of change occurring online and PR is changing at an even more rapid rate right now.
    – Use your youth to your advantage: companies are having trouble figuring out why things like Facebook are so popular. If you have a lot of experience using social networks, you’re insights might land you a job.
    – Invest in yourself: landing a job in today’s economy will be no easy task. Don’t let the holding pattern put your career on hold. Start blogging, start tweeting, work on building up your social network as it will help you hit the ground running when you do land a job.

  11. Great advice all. As someone who speaks at a few different college networking events and used to recruit for interns I would say get involved online. If you want to play up your online experience (which is a must now a days in PR) you better be active. You don’t have to own your own PR blog – but contribute your thoughts on other peoples blogs, answer questions on LinkedIn. Start building your online credibility by participating. You can’t claim to be well versed in online media if you are just posting pics on Facebook.

    Finally, I think confidence is huge – not cockiness but confidence. In PR you have to have that “it” the ability to let a client trust that you know what you are talking about. If you can convey that in an interview or in your internship you will likely move up the ranks and be sitting in front of clients much faster than your peers!

  12. David, I just had this conversation with a former intern. Here are the musts for young college students trying to land their first job.

    Have a personal brand – Who are you other than a college graduate with a PR degree? Just like a well-branded business, you should know your values, your mission, your vision. Most importantly, make a brand promise. For instance: you are Joanne Smith, the crisis management specialist. Your promise it to design and implement that can be immediately implemented and minimize negative publicity.

    Be worth the money – Imagine the salary you want and think from your potential employer’s perspective. For example: Let’s say you want a $40k annual salary. The cost to your employer is actually about $48k plus when you add in benefits and employment costs. But your employer doesn’t want to just break even if they hire you, they want to make a profit. That means they need more than $48k of income from your position each year. What can you do that’s worth more than $48k per year? Figure that out and you have a job.

    Here’s a secret: The two tips listed above are related.

  13. Great post, David. I agree with your tips, especially about the importance of internships. The quanity and quality of a student’s internship experience is way more important than their GPA. I had six internships in college and every single one of them taught me important lessons about writing, media relations, interacting with coworkers and supervisors, and just plain professionalism. Internships can help a student discover what it is that they want to do, and often more importantly, what they don’t want to do.

  14. Establish your personal brand and live it. Somewhere around my sophomore year in undergrad, I sat down and thought about who I was and where I wanted to be. Personally, I started dressing differently, held myself to different standards and after a while, my professional life followed suit. I began to realize that my reputation could carry me further than I thought.

    Summed up, know who you are, what you’re good at, how you learn, what you want to learn. Some of this will come in time, but sometimes you need a good starting off point. Then you can grow and mature into what and where you want to be. I’m no where near where I want to be, but I at least have an idea. Most of all, be positive and know things will work out.

  15. Everyone has given great advice! I’d like to share a “practical” tip from my work in media relations. It may seem simple and obvious, but many people don’t do this and it will impess the person you’re calling.

    When you call someone — a reporter (especially!) or a business person/contact, introduce yourself first and then ask if they’re on deadline or in the middle of something. This shows common courtesy and an understanding of the pressures they’re under.

    Hope this helps. Best/Geri R

  16. Great post! My advice is to be a sponge, and read and watch as much as possible. As communicators, we have an excuse to indulge in all the media has to offer – from critical news outlets to fashion & gossip magazines to industry trades. We must be in the know! I always ask job applicants what news they read and where they get their information – when the answer is “I don’t watch TV,” I wonder how they will really be an asset to my clients.

  17. David,

    Thanks for writing this article! As a fairly recent grad with a job now, I can confidently say that you really hit the nail on the head with this post. Networking and Internships are the real keys to get you into a great company. I have a few tips of my own that I learned through the interview process.

    1. ALWAYS follow up. Send a thank you note if you have time. At least send an e-mail thanking each and every person you met with for their time and share your contact information with them (you should always ask for their card). Simple right? Now, follow up in two or three weeks if you haven’t heard from them. If it’s a holiday, wish them a Happy whatever, ask how the process is going, etc. Basically build a relationship with those key decision makers. Even if you’re not a right fit for the position they currently have open, by constantly checking up, you place yourself in the forefront of their mind. When a position opens up, you want to be the first person they think about. That’s how I landed my awesome job.

    2. Don’t let one botched interview affect the next ones. I know how stressful college fairs can be. It’s usually one interview after another in the course of a few short days. If you botch one, don’t worry about it. You’ll nail the next one – just don’t let it affect your confidence.

    3. Don’t be afraid to turn people down. If you feel that you aren’t a good fit, don’t be afraid to turn an offer down. Don’t be unreasonably picky, but also don’t say yes just because it was offered. Take the time to really think about if the job will let you gain the experience you want and whether or not you’ll be happy in that company’s environment. Go with your gut feeling. You want to be able to stay with your company of choice for an extended period of time not job hopping every few months or so.

    4. Don’t get discouraged. I starting my job search first semester of my senior year. I didn’t get a job until August after my May graduation – almost a full year later. The process can be discouraging especially if you see your friends landing what looks to be some pretty awesome jobs. The wait is worth it. I love my job which is much more that some of my friends can say.

    Good luck and happy hunting!

    @balemar

  18. 1. Understand exactly how what you do relates to the bottom line of the business that pays your paycheck. Both the company you work for and your clients. Be able to explain it to them in the classic elevator pitch. And not a slow elevator.

    2. Listen more often than you speak. This one has the benefit of making you look very smart (the smart people are the ones being quiet in almost any situation) as well as continue learning things. Offer your insights when they relate directly to item #1 above.

    3. Remember that things which seem obvious to you may not be obvious to others (social media will be one of these things). Use item #1 above to explain these obvious things to others.

    4. Building/creating/making is harder than editing/critiquing/destroying. Both are necessary in business and require different mindsets. Learn which one attracts you most and work towards expertise.

    5. Always always always keep learning. Synthesize from other fields, other industries and other cultures. Learn to translate from these other sources into your own.

    Best of luck!

  19. Here’s some advice from one who has hired and fired.

    1. Take informational interviews and research the companies so you can ask questions. I LOVE when a candidate asks intelligent questions.

    2. Write a hand-written thank you note. This will set you apart.

    3. Be up on digital media — before you go into the meeting think about the ways you communicate with your friends and then consider how those communication vehicles could translate into pr and marketing. Your advantage to other candidates is that you are young and inherently understand technology in a way that your interviewer might not.

    4. In life and business, I’ve learned: always take the high road. The low road route has lots of bites in the ass.

    That’s it from me!

  20. These are all GREAT tips! I’m sure they’ll appreciate them. Keep ’em coming!

  21. Tenacity – Never give up. No matter how many times you are rejected, learn something from it and move on.

    Loving a Challenge – Challenges will only cause you to learn and grow. Sometimes you will learn things the hard way, but that allows you to perform things easier the next time, and even easier the time after that.

    Be Personable – In the PR field, there are too many “book smarts” type personalities. Relax and be yourself. Don’t be afraid to be funny or sarcastic. Who knows, it may make you stand out from the crowd.

    Always Follow Up – Following up shows your tenacity and helps you stand out. Handwritten notes are better than emails. Make it personal.

    Hope this helps!

    Lindsey

  22. This post and the comments offer excellent practical advice for any PR job seeker! Definitely follow these tips, and allow me to add some slightly less practical advice.

    First, let me say that I graduated in – yes, I’m going public with this – 1991, in a very similar climate to what the class of 2009 is facing. Another Bush was president then, by the way…but I digress. There simply were very few jobs available, and none were in the city I lived in.

    Looking back, I wish I could have stressed about the situation less, since it had absolutely nothing to do with me (I’d had 3 internships, and contacts that should have served me well, but it doesn’t matter if the jobs don’t exist). In addition to my endless hand-wringing, I passed on opportunity to go to Europe because I was worried I would miss out on my dream job. In the end, it took one full year and a move to a bigger city to begin my career in earnest.

    So my advice is: try to make your own luck, but don’t sweat the many things that are out of your control. People *really will* understand if you don’t get a job right away in this economy. Learn as much as you can during this period, but most of all have fun! You’re young! The job market will eventually open up, and you’ll be ready.

  23. While I haven’t worked IN the PR world I’ve worked with top notch PR folks and regardless of the industry you are in I think it is so important to Listen. Listen. Listen.

    There is always something to be learned. And these days you can listen not only with your ears, but with your eyes. Use social networks to listen to customers, potential customers and colleagues.

  24. I still believe PR students should spend at least one semester on “the other side” — in a newsroom. Television, radio, newspaper, magazine, it doesn’t matter. Having exposure to the media environment gives you a real sense of how to think like a journalist and ultimately use that perspective to break through the clutter when you’re working in the PR industry. I worked as an intern at a TV station in college and worked there after graduation before moving to PR. Exactly 10 years later, the lessons I learned during that time apply today. I wouldn’t trade that experience for anything.

  25. Good writing…whether it’s conversational like scriptwriting or more formal means, is THE quintessential skill. Ditto what all have said about networking, thank you notes, etc, but the best advice I could give is: don’t listen to what the “career placement center” says about salaries. It varies more widely than the NYSE. Like the title of the book says, “Do what you love, the money will come later.” Thanks for this thread. I will link the thread to our Byline blog.

  26. I just found out that a similar conversation has been going on via Twitter today using the hashtag #pradvice. To see the tips and advice shared there, check out http://search.twitter.com/search?max_id=1143192819&page=1&q=%23PRadvice

  27. Wow, I’m a little late to the game here, but I’d throw out a few tips:

    * Be persistent. Not obnoxious. Persistent. There is a difference.

    * Don’t be afraid of the informational interview. You may not get a job in the short-term using this strategy, but you will develop valuable contacts and learn a ton about the PR industry.

    * Go the extra mile. So much more you can do to prepare for the real world of PR than just internships. Separate yourself from the competition by going the extra mile. Volunteer with a local not-for-profit. They’re frequently looking for “affordable” PR help. Freelance for a community newspaper–learn the other side of the biz. Start a blog and hone your writing skills.

    Also, yes, been noticing lots of great advice using the #pradvice.

  28. I would advise them not to focus so specifically on “the plan” that they miss an opportunity that could very well be life changing.

    Ask for help. No one succeeds without linking arms and standing on the shoulders of those that have already walked the path. Ask those who are where you want to be to share their roadmap and when you get there reach back and help someone else.

    Volunteer. Not only will you give your life balance but you can use volunteering to acquire new skills and make important contacts.

    Get out of the bubble. It’s so easy to surround yourself with people who are just like you but a variety of perspectives will keep you sharp. Network with people who are in different industries, come from different backgrounds and have different views.

  29. I’m a little late to this party (thanks for the invite, David!) and pretty much all the things I was going to say have been covered by the fine people above me.

    The main thing I always say to interns that I’ve had the pleasure to work with in the past has been simple:

    Be yourself.

    If you have something on your mind about what’s being done or said, question it. Any good boss will always appreciate the fact you’re wanting to know why something is being done a certain way, as opposed to just accepting the status quo.

    Stay true to yourself. Many people let their character, ethics and personality be hidden or trampled by the new company they work at. Ask yourself do you really want to work at a company that forces you to change the person you are. Remember, agencies need YOU more than you need them (yes, agency bosses, you do, if you want to continue to grow).

    Use every single tool at your disposal to make you stand out. VisualCV.com and MeeID.com are two excellent ways to interlink all your networks, as well as beef up a staid resume. Use them to your advantage.

    Most of all, be confident. Each and every one of you has something to offer any company you go to work for, or show an interest in. Have belief in who you are and what you can do. Remember, greatness is in everyone – let yours shine.

  30. I would like to see you expand on the networking. It seems that to often networking is defined as connecting with someone to tell them what you want them to know. Let’s make sure they are learning that listening and asking questions and being genuinely interested in the answers is the key to good communication skills.

  31. Hello students! 🙂

    Some of this might be the same as above, but here goes anyway:

    1. Do the crap work. It builds character and you aren’t above taking out the trash…ever. (okay, I doubt you’ll have to take out the trash, but you get my meaning) 😉

    2. Don’t ever think you know more than anyone else…because that’s when you run the risk of not learning or pissing off people.

    3. If someone tells you that you are wrong, deal with it. It’s usually never personal, but someone who is trying to adjust your sense of yourself because they know you are capable of more (i.e. your britches might just be too big at that particular time).

    4. Respect everyone…including the cleaners, the admins, wait staff when you go out to lunch, etc.

    5. Make friends with people in all departments, you never know who has information you might need (the accounting & sales depts. are my fav because they always know before anyone else when a company is in trouble or doing really well).

    6. Most of all, be patient, work hard and earn your stripes. You’re day will come…trust me.

    This list might be blunt…and I might sound like a bit of a “hater,” but I was once a young graduate who thought I was super smart and full of great ideas and I made mistakes and didn’t listen/learn when I should have. I’ve also worked with new graduates who talked to me like I was an ancient fossil who was left behind in the dark ages. It happens to all of us… Best of luck!!

  32. On behalf of the Iowa State students who David will be talking to this week, THANK YOU for all your wisdom. It’s great to have your input!

  33. My advice to college students is to know the right people. Build strategic relationships with the people who hire. Do internships, join groups, volunteer and make these connections early.

    Getting a job these days is all about knowing the right people. Keeping that job, however, is about having the right skills sets and the ability to make your boss look good.

  34. The other thing I don’t see as much on here – but I think is just as important – is to bring something else to the table other than PR skills. I think some of the best PR pros are not the ones with a straight PR education and background; they have degrees or work/extra-curricular experience in business, or political science, or journalism, or just about anything else.

    All of the comments here are very good – you can’t get a job without a network, and you need to hustle and set yourself apart from your peers. But one of the best ways you can do that is to identify what you know and are passionate about and then look for a job where you can add that unique value to your organization immediately. Chances are you’ll be that much happier as well if you’re doing the kind of work you’re really passionate about.

  35. Beyond al the great stategic advive above (and agreeing with Mark Tosczak in particular on “writing”), practice your writing. Try different voices, styles. Be able to quickly adapt to new voices. Think of it as method acting. Keep a journal, text doc on your laptop, whatever; keep writing. Also READ current items (press, magazines, etc.) and practice how you’d change the spin on a story, take a different angle.

  36. 1. Being remarkable is a choice.
    If the marketplace isn’t talking about you, there’s a reason, you’re boring (your product, service, industry, etc). Like Notorious B.I.G. once said, be, “sicka than your average”.

    2. Don’t confuse activity with action.
    You can Twitter, Facebook, and Myspace for 8 hours a day and create a 1000+ following, but what is it really accomplishing besides making you a social media king/queen? Ask yourself, is the online work you’re doing actually leading you where you want to go, or merely keeping you busy?

    3. Don’t have goals.
    Have more fun and spend time doing what matters right now, which is, after all, the moment in which you are living. But, if you’d like to get things done and make an impact, create goals like there’s no tomorrow. What gets measured gets done, plain and simple.


    Advice from a 23 year old Gen Y serial entrepreneur who recently graduated from The University of Texas 07 with degrees in public pelations, corp. comm., and business.

    CEO – Your Marque: Web Design & Marketing.

    Chief Growth Officer – Greatest Minds: Change How You Think.

    President – West Campus Living: Texas real estate brokerage.

  37. David – Best of luck for your talk at Iowa State!

    In addition to all of the great advice already mentioned in your post and comments, I would reinforce Amber’s comments about engaging with as many mentors as possible.

    Within PR, I would strongly advise anyone getting into this profession to practice “Commonsense PR.” The PR industry and in particluar traditional media relations practices are incredibly backwards and fail to use logic when approaching the media. Remember that by putting the media’s needs first…it will be a win, win, win for all (your media contact, your company/client & yourself).

    Again, good luck with your talk…you’ll do great!

    Matt

  38. The best thing I can recommend is to try, try, try again. It’s hard to get your foot in the door, especially at larger internships. It may require starting out at a smaller firm first or thinking somewhat outside the box a bit, but there are opportunities out there.

    It is a small field, but I really thing that you just keep pursuing leads. Even if they all don’t work out favorably, you still can meet some great contacts that may provide opportunities down the road.

  39. Craft your writing abilities. I’ve been participating in a few new hire interviews lately, and I cannot stress the importance of being able to write well. And I’m not just talking about press releases. A well-crafted semester term paper will likely impress me more than a standard press release. It shows your style, creativity and sentence structure.

  40. David –

    Pardon my tardy response. I see that your meeting has come and gone, but you’ll undoubtedly be invited to other such engagements soon. I actually wrote a post today about the importance of learning as much as you can – not so you can offer answers – but so you can ask better questions. I received a comment that the post was not only helpful to practitioners, but also interviewees as well. Have a look when you get a chance and let me know what you think. Again, sorry for getting back to you so late! Leo

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