Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

“You came here to learn.”

This summer, I interned at a public relations firm. Public relations was not something I specifically studied, but I was confident that some of my Babson classes had prepared me, and my company that hired me was confident too. I was recently asked to write a “byline” for a client. My first question I asked was: “what’s a byline?” and I immediately had to Google it. Then, my boss came in and told me how it would be a cool opportunity to write the article and have it published. She was super excited for me, and I tried to be too. I spent a lot of time reading articles that were similarly organized like I was being asked to, and then researching my topic and listening to a few podcasts. 

I sat in my office chair staring at my laptop, and spent the next day very carefully writing my article, and everything that I questioned, I did not include. My boss asked to see my progress, and I was hesitant. I printed it out, and handed it to her. 

“I don’t know if it’s good.” I said

“What do you mean you don’t know?” my boss asked.

“Well, I don’t know if it’s right. I have never done one of these before,” I whined back.

“Sara, you came here to learn. If you didn’t learn anything this summer it would be a waste of your time and our time. You need to try, and we will teach you! Be confident!!!” She replied.

My boss was right- it would be a complete waste of my time if I spent my entire summer just doing what I knew how to do comfortably. We sat down and she skimmed my rough drafts. She was honest, and there were parts she liked and didn’t like. As we talked through my work, the majority of her feedback is that she wanted more. She wanted my ideas to be featured that I left out, and to add more of my industry knowledge. I steered away from advanced business words, unsure if I would use them right, and tried to avoid any mistakes. 

The conversation that I had with my boss has stuck with me ever since. I have spent more time at work on tasks that I previously had avoided, or done the bare minimum. I realized that I had a lot more to offer from my course studies. I also realized that to learn, all I had to do was try, and anyone in the office would be there to teach me. It reminded me that while interning it may seem like the company wants to see you at your best, but they really want to see your progress. In the last few weeks of any internship, go out and take risks, as internships are a once in a lifetime experience. Be confident! Babson prepares you.