How to Be the Best Intern Ever

February 23, 2017

by Ashley Tinstman

As someone who was once a nervous, timid intern, I’ll admit—internships can be somewhat terrifying.  Your professors constantly stress the importance of getting multiple internships, but the process of seeking and obtaining those internships can sometimes feel overwhelming.

If you’ve ever felt this way, take a deep breath and relax.  Internships are a process of trial and error—they’re designed to help you learn what you like and don’t like, all while getting real-world experience.  And as employers, we’re here to help you grow, and that’s something we love to do.

Here at Curley & Pynn, interns are a valuable part of our team who get to work on all kinds of projects—drafting newsletters, doing research, building media lists and more.  Now, you might be thinking, “That sounds awesome, but what exactly do you look for in an intern?”  Luckily for you, I am here to answer that very question.  Here are five things that make a great C&P intern:

  • Write.  And then write some more.

But seriously … writing is a vital skill in our industry.  As an intern at C&P (and in your future jobs), you will be writing on a consistent basis. Whether it’s a news release, feature story or a media pitch, you must have strong writing skills and know how to tailor your writing to very specific audiences.  If writing isn’t exactly your strong suit, practice!  It’ll go a long way in helping you stand out during your interview.

  • Be a sponge.

Once you’ve landed the internship, be eager to learn all you can.  Observe what others do, take notes, ask to sit in on meetings and seek out advice. We are here to be a resource for you, so don’t be shy.  You can learn a great deal by observing and asking questions.

  • Be a problem solver.

In the PR industry, you will undoubtedly face challenges that require you to think critically.  You may have to do difficult research for a client or write about a topic with which you’re unfamiliar.  In those cases, be resourceful and attempt to work through the problem you’re facing.  But if you get stuck after trying, don’t be afraid to ask questions.

  • View mistakes as a learning opportunity.

Everyone makes mistakes.  It’s an unavoidable reality.  You’ll make mistakes as an intern, and you’ll make mistakes as a seasoned industry pro.  But guess what … that’s OK.  Mistakes may not be pleasant in the moment, but they can be a valuable learning opportunity.  When your internship supervisor offers constructive criticism, view it as a positive.  We want to help you grow and succeed.

  • Take initiative.

One of the most valuable things you can do as an intern is take initiative. If there’s a project you want to get involved with, tell us.  If there’s something you want to learn more about, speak up.  If you don’t have enough work to do, ask for more.  We do our best to get our interns involved in a variety of projects, but we always like when our interns take the initiative to ask first.

If you’re interested in interning at an awesome agency with awesome people, you can find more information here.


Interns are People, Too

April 11, 2012

by Kim Taylor

The value of interns cannot be overstated.  We’ve had an active internship program at Curley & Pynn since, well, nearly the beginning.  And, in my (almost) 12 years here, I’ve watched as a select few have made a direct path from intern to full-time employee.

While I acknowledge that many internships must consist of making coffee, picking up dry cleaning and generally handling menial tasks like something out of “The Devil Wears Prada” that surely doesn’t reflect the experience we try to create.  Learning is a critical part, but real-world experiences are essential.

If the same is true elsewhere, I wonder, then, why I continue to see emails from “intern@XYZcompany.” If an intern is tasked with communicating with the media, for instance, how much credibility does their “intern@” email address have?

Don’t get me wrong, we’re not in the business of passing off interns as seasoned pros, but we are in the business of creating real opportunities and interns are people, too.


On Interns

February 2, 2010

by Roger Pynn

The value of interns in our business has never been a question. At present count two of our staff started with Curley & Pynn as interns … and they are tremendous young public relations professionals.

Two weeks ago we were fortunate to be finalists in the competition for the public relations needs of a client we really wanted to win. We were competing against three other finalists … all great firms that we truly respect.

When we walked into the room to present our approach, we were greeted by a room full of people who enthusiastically reached out to introduce themselves and put us at ease instantly … one-by-one standing to shake our hands and introduce themselves.

Imagine our surprise when we got to the next-to-last individual and a smiling young woman rose to say “you probably don’t remember me, but I’m Loretta Shaffer and I interned for you 14 years ago. I loved Curley & Pynn.”

There was no forgetting Loretta … an always happy and energetic young woman who we knew from her first day as an intern was destined for success. And, here she was, now the director of marketing for a major tourism development organization. She asked piercing questions and made solid observations. She shared insight with us. She was passionate about her product.

We are, too … so pleased to be reunited with a former associate as we take on the work of representing the Beaches of South Walton on Northwest Florida’s Gulf Coast … Florida’s premier collection of 15 beautiful beaches known for their sugary white sand, an eclectic group of beachfront communities and soon the new Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport that will open up incredible experiences for freedom seekers everywhere.


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