Working at Ogilvy Chicago over the summer as an account management intern was an incredible experience. Being at an agency with almost 600 employees was certainly an eye-opening experience. I really enjoyed working in account management because I was able to see projects from creative brief to keyline approval. Somewhere in between the hundreds (which seemed like thousands) of emails, countless cups of coffee and plenty of Ogilvy-isms, I learned what it was going to take to be successful in life after graduation.
As I headed back to the Florida heat just in time for my (last) first day of class, I thought how soon I would be in the “real world.” Here’s a checklist of things you can do during your senior year to make the impending reality of life after graduation a little less terrifying.
- Get involved with PRSSA. OK, so maybe I’m a little biased as a chapter president, but PRSSA is an invaluable opportunity for professional development. My team at Ogilvy told me that my involvement with UF PRSSA helped me stand out from the competition.
- Make sure you have that headlining item on your resume. Whether it’s a stellar internship, a part-time job during the school year or volunteer work you’re really passionate about, make sure you have something that stands out that you can talk about in an interview.
- Study longer, work harder, think bigger. You’ve worked so hard the last four years and this is the final lap. Think about how you’ll be remembered.
- Start a list of places you’d like to live. Can you see yourself strutting down Madison Avenue or is tropical paradise in San Diego more your speed? Start a list and make it your goal to get there. Don’t limit yourself!
- Network with professionals and your peers. A lot of students get caught up in networking with professionals that they forget the value in networking with other motivated students. Make sure you have a balance of both.
- Don’t forget to have fun. It is your last year of college, after all. Just make sure you keep it classy!
Adara Ney is president of the University of Florida chapter of PRSSA. She is a senior public relations major with a concentration in business administration, interested in working in brand management, strategy or corporate social responsibility. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.