Molly Gindin is an alumna of the Integrated Marketing Communications graduate program at Emerson College. Throughout her graduate experience, She had two internships at Hill Holliday, a marketing and communications agency in Boston. Her first internship position was an Account Management Intern and her second internship position was a Brand Planning Intern. She currently works at Hill Holliday as an Assistant Account Executive. I spoke with her to discuss her internship experience.
Finding an Internship: Is it the right fit?
When looking for her first internship, Molly searched for ad agencies in Boston. She read about companies and the different internships they had to offer in different departments. She also went into her personal network and spoke with her professors inquiring about any connections they may have in the Boston area. One of her professors previously worked at Hill Holliday and was able to connect her with someone in the company.
Looking for an internship, it’s normal for students to question whether they are the right fit for the position they apply for, however it is also important to question whether the company you apply for is the right fit for you. Before becoming an intern at Hill Holliday, Molly found it important to learn about the culture of the company which she was able to learn about through her professor and a friend. Before going for her interview, she was able to look at what they valued and the work that they do. One of the company’s mottos is “hungry, humble human.” Because they were so welcoming and their values matched her own, she knew she was in the right place.
Molly was one of the few graduate interns while she was at Hill Holliday. The integrated component of the IMC program provided her with knowledge of so many different aspects of the business. She learned terms, budget talks and a lot of the language used in the industry which was a huge help for her. Throughout her experience in the IMC program, she was able to touch upon different aspects of marketing, advertising, public relations and research. Having this background knowledge of each department was helpful when interacting with people from different departments within the office. Molly participated in a research methods class that focused on data-driven research. This was one area where she saw a tangible connection between her knowledge and her internship.
Having a graduate degree in a related field has elevated her ability to perform and how quickly she stepped into her new role. She has received positive feedback from managers, about her background in integrated marketing communications which allowed them to give her more work at a faster pace.
Advice for IMC Students
Toward the end of our conversation, I asked if she had any recommendations for current graduate students looking for an internship. Here are her recommendations…
- Take advantage of on-site visits.
- Make connections with your professors.
- Learn as much as possible.
- Set up meetings with different people in the agency.
Keep Making Connections
Although my conversation with Molly was work related for me, I also listened to what she had to say from a graduate student perspective. What stuck with me the most was when she said “don’t take your internships for granted. Do as much as you can.”
Internships provide students with the opportunity to apply what they’re learning in the classroom to their work while gaining professional experience in their fields. Although you are applying concepts learned in the classroom, your internship can also serve as a learning experience. By making connections with the staff in your department, asking to be part of meetings, or even taking on extra assignments, you are likely to gain skills that will help you be successful in your future career as well as learn more about the field you are working.