By Bridget Hepworth, ’20 public relations
My internship experience at Cambria was full of mentorship, hands-on work and fast-paced learning. I am incredibly grateful this Minnesota company was so dedicated to giving everyone in the program this amazing learning opportunity that they were still able to safely provide the full internship in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to the Cambria team’s investment in our futures, I had a fantastic summer working for them as the creative copywriting intern.
A lot of young people seeking careers in the communications field may not be sure exactly what copywriting is. I know I did not when I applied for the internship. But this internship showed me that I definitely made the right choice in this career path. Working closely with the graphic design intern most of the summer, I was able to collaborate on a lot of creative projects and actually see my ideas and work implemented in the real world before my very eyes. I’ve always been a writer of all trades, and copywriting is the perfect blend of my skills. The path from public relations (my major) to copywriting probably doesn’t seem very linear, but fortunately a lot of the writing I learned as a PR major actually was really helpful in working for a company that values their brand image, tone and voice so highly.
One of the biggest challenges early on in the internship was learning how to write with Cambria’s luxurious but humble voice. It took a ton of trial and error, but I learned early on not to take the criticism I got personally. My supervisor/mentor always made sure to point out what I was doing right along with providing constructive feedback on how to improve. I worked as a real member of Cambria’s creative team that consisted of around 14 people (the biggest department in marketing), and I could tell they viewed me as a peer, which felt invigorating. I was often given projects that I had no experience with, but I learned through each one how to communicate with different departments in marketing, and I met a lot of colleagues that way.
Cambria’s internship program is pretty big compared to others, with 32 interns across all of their departments. I was able to become really close with the other 8 marketing interns, so when the internship ended, I didn’t just have a whole new outlook on copywriting, I had 8 new friends, too. About halfway through the internship, Minnesota’s governor mandated that masks be worn in all buildings, so after that I quickly became very accustomed to wearing a mask all day while I worked. Yet another learning experience I was not expecting.
I’m very thankful for the 499A scholarship I received from Greenlee, because it was not cheap to live in the Twin Cities and commute an hour every day. I can’t wait to take this internship experience and the portfolio I’ve gathered from it, and get going on my career in copywriting.
Editor’s note: Greenlee 499A internship scholarships support students who have a primary major in advertising, journalism and mass communication or public relations and are completing their required 400-hour internships. The application is available each spring.