For these first two years as a Graphic Design student I haven’t really thought much about real life jobs. I had a general idea of what types of jobs there were, but mostly all I knew were jobs in marketing and advertising. So, whenever anyone asked me what job I wanted after I graduate I always just said marketing or advertising. I didn’t know what those jobs looked like, but I did not know any other options. I even took steps in my courses to pursue marketing, I took the Principles of Marketing class, and I thought it was very interesting, though it had nothing to do with design. As Covid hit, and we were sent home, I started to look for internship opportunities for the summer. I was already planning to get an internship or something relating to my field to do for the summer, I decided I did not want another babysitting gig. I went on Handshake, a job website that Marywood emailed about and started searching.
For Graphic Design, there were not a whole lot of purely design opportunities, the majority of jobs were mostly some sort of marketing. At that point I was looking for a remote job, and I found a few, but only one got back to me right away. An event planning company contacted me very quickly and said that if I wanted a summer internship I had to jump on right then for a social media campaign they were doing . It was the beginning of April. I said yes!
I want to first say, it was a great opportunity. I got to put it on my resume and create content. But… I found out that I do NOT like marketing. Creating content was fine. They had me making social media posts in the beginning, then I went on to create blog headers and graphics. That part was fun and I really enjoyed it, but I didn’t connect with many of the other aspects of the job.
At the beginning, they wanted all the interns to contact 20 influencers on Instagram, daily. Personally, that was out of my comfort zone, and they had a whole team just for PR, but I was on the graphics team, so it seemed out of place. Later, they had us contacting local government officials, news, and TV stations, 10+ a week. While I disliked this this aspect of the job, I did understand the reasoning: more people reaching out equals more people contacted overall.
One thing that I found difficult was the ‘tracking’ aspect of the Job. Tracking your hours, tracking all the people you contact, tracking how many meetings you went to. The system worked in a way that if you had high numbers in the spreadsheet then you were the best intern, but in art it doesn’t always come down to numbers. It seemed all very arbitrary to me, but that was the art way of thinking, not the marketing side.
After two months, I left. While it was good experience working in a team and creating content, the rest overshadowed the good aspects. In the end, I am glad I did it. Now I know what type of jobs appeal to me, or don’t appeal to me. I have since recanted my want for a future job in marketing and have been exploring all the other avenues of graphic design since.