This success story is part of a series profiling people who leveraged their college internship experience into a full-time job. This interview features Jessica A. Zaloom, an advertising professional.
Jessica, what college did you attend?
What year did you graduate from college?
Where did you complete an internship?
DeVito/Verdi, a full-service advertising agency in New York City
How did you find/land your internship?
I knew I wanted to land a job in the marketing/PR industry, as all of my internships during the school year were along these lines. After doing my research, and applying to a small handful of strong, mid-sized agencies, I chose to work for DeVito/Verdi during the summer of my graduation, hoping that my hard work and work ethic would land me a full-time spot.
What type of work did you do during your internship?
During my internship I learned a great deal from co-workers. I drafted news releases for the press, built relationships with clients, and learned how to make anything seem news-worthy. All of these things would be necessary for completing my day-to-day tasks successfully and efficiently.
What was one significant thing you learned about working during your internship?
Not every day would be a walk in the park. Some days would be good days, while others would be extremely challenging. I learned not to let one bad day affect my entire week. It was important to learn from mistakes and do better next time. Also, I asked A LOT of questions. Even though I was afraid the questions may seem stupid, it was my way of learning even the smallest things. Sometimes people will assume you know something. But, it never hurts to ask to make sure you understand.
How did your internship lead to a job offer?
After the summer was over, and the other (still in school) interns were finishing up their time here, I expressed my interest in staying with the company, permanently, if possible. I had been learning a lot and really enjoying my time here. It was by far the best internship experience I had yet, and I was not ready to leave it to start all over elsewhere. After all, I had graduated and was ready to work full time. After speaking with my boss, I was hired full-time at DeVito/Verdi, and I have been extremely happy here since.
Any words of wisdom you would like to share with current college students?
It’s OK to not land your “dream job” right away. Be patient, work hard, and don’t lose sight of your goals.
Thank you, Jessica, for sharing your experience and advice.