In November last year I applied for work experience at my favourite magazine, Cosmopolitan. I was thrilled when Cosmo’s Editorial and Beauty Assistant, Gyan Yankovich, replied to my email and allocated me a week in April this year.
I have been reading Cosmo since my teens and dreamed of working in magazines. As I’ve mentioned before, I became more interested in sports journalism, media, PR and didn’t actively pursue magazines. I knew that if I never applied at Cosmopolitan that I would have always wondered what it would’ve been like in the magazine world.
So there I was lining up at the front desk of ACP’s Park St building. Gyan came and collected me and took me up to the Cosmo office. I was introduced to all the staff and immediately sent on a coffee run. Before I could officially start I signed a confidentiality agreement and a survey asking what I liked or didn’t like about the magazine.
On my first day I organized new products in the beauty closet (it’s very tiny!), conducted a vox pop with Sally Wood, Cosmopolitan’s U Ambassador (you may remember Remi was a finalist) in Pitt St Mall, researched Jen Hawkins’ health and beauty regime, did a mag swap, dropped off pages of the magazine to prepress and transcribed an interview for Features Writer Yeong Sassall.
My first day at Cosmopolitan went by relatively quickly, especially since I got an hour for lunch each day. I finally met former Cosmo Intern Erin Doyle who is lovely and set my mind at ease (I was still very nervous) and gave me some tips.
Day two at Cosmo also went by quickly, starting off with a coffee run. I should make a note of how friendly the coffee guys were to me and every customer who came into the cafe. I then did another vox pop with fashion work experience girl Elise.
After lunch Art Designer Audris Khong gave me a list of shopping to do on Friday. I was delighted with this task as my Dad and I always do the grocery shopping together as our way of catching up on a Saturday. My day ended with more transcribing for Yeong and several models came into the office for a casting.
By my third day at Cosmo I thought I had my routine down pat. Coffee, several trips up to prepress and production etc. However I was finally given a research task by Acting Features Editor Naomi Jaul. Naomi asked me to help her research a feature on celebrity couples and come up with an idea for the ‘You! You! You!’ section in the magazine. Naomi said the ‘You!’ article had to be a cash versus career story.
I got to work on researching celeb couples and Naomi liked my additions to her own research. I then became stuck on the cash versus career idea. All I could think of was interning versus earning money from my casual hospitality job. Eventually after a couple of discussions and brainstorming, Naomi decided the idea had become bigger than a ‘You!’ story and asked me to make a feature story pitch.
I ended up writing a brief pitch on different examples when you have to choose cash or your career. I was really pleased with what I had done that day as I got more of an insight into feature writing at Cosmo. After spending most of my day in front of a computer, I was glad when 5pm came around.
My second last day at Cosmo started off with a coffee run and a brief conversation with Naomi, Yeong and Claire about the upcoming 2012 London Olympics. I ended up suggesting a few male swimmers for the team to research.
My next task of the morning was to sort pages of the June issue using the ‘Grid’, which I knew had Kim Kardashian on the cover because I got a sneek peek at her feature story. The grid was explained to me by Picture and Production Editor Michelle Jackson. Michelle said they use the grid to help them organize the issue and where they can place advertising.
The rest of my day was spent in the Cosmo Fashion Department. I helped out Fashion Office Coordinator Nikki Lowe and Taylor who was also doing work experience in the fashion department that week.
Taylor and myself organized clothes into designer, then sorted and packed clothes to be sent back to PR firms. It seemed like a easy task, but finding the item of clothing on an invoice and packing clothes is very time consuming! And with such a high turnover of clothes, the Cosmo Fashion Department is always in a process of receiving and returning clothes.
My final day at Cosmo was by far the best. I came into the office with some home made baklava as a thank you to Gyan and the team, did my last coffee run, made two trips to the local Woolworths for Audris’ photoshoot, and met Cosmo’s sex columnist Emma Markezic.
I had wanted to meet Emma after I was liaising with her for Milk PR reguarding the Great Australian Sex Census. It turns out that Emma devoted her entire column in the June issue to the Sex Census. I was delighted to see that Emma wrote about the Census in Cosmo as it’s such a valuable piece of PR (especially since I set it up).
But the most exciting task that I did while at Cosmo was helping out Acting Fashion director Charlotte Stokes on a photoshoot. This wasn’t a fashion feature, it was Zoe Foster’s photo shoot for her monthly column. The chances of me meeting Zoe were very slim as she does six different looks for the next six months. So I was very lucky to be there when a photo shoot was scheduled.
Although Zoe is now Cosmo’s Dating Guru, she was Beauty Editor when I first started reading the magazine. I was a fan of Zoe’s beauty column and meeting her was the icing on the cake of a great week at Cosmopolitan.
After I finished at the photoshoot, I went back to the Cosmo office, said goodbye and thank you to the people who were still there and left. I had a really great time and got an insight into the magazine world.
My only regret is that I hadn’t applied at Cosmo sooner. I would really love to do more work experience in magazines but as I am already commited to Melbourne Storm and now Universal Music Australia for the rest of this year, I will have to see how things go.
So my advice to anyone who is reading this is to just to do it. If you want to work in magazines, PR, print, TV or radio.
Just. Do. IT!
Take every opportunity you can get. It only takes one person to give you a chance for you to then forge your own path.
I was given a chance and have now ended up with a variety of experiences at Milk Kiddle Langmaid PR as an intern and PR Account Manager, intern at Melbourne Storm and Universal Music Australia and work experience at Cosmopolitan Magazine.
All of my varied experiences in the media industry have helped me decided which path is the right one for me. Internships are invaluable industry experience so make the most of it while you’re at university.
WORK EXPERIENCE & INTERNSHIPS AT COSMOPOLITAN: please refer to their website for further details.
This week I start my fourth internship in 14 months.
Last time I wrote on this blog, I said how I would pursue magazines after my trip to Cosmopolitan Magazine in Sydney – if all went well.
It was going quite well at Cosmo in Sydney. Until I received an email from my boss at Milk PR releasing me for a few weeks until more work picked up. I was a bit disappointed at the news until I realized this meant I’d have more time on hands!
Life it seems always has other plans for me. As one door closes, even for a moment, another door opens.
Six months ago I went for an interview for an internship with Universal Music Australia. Katey Power put me up for the position and at the time I just wasn’t right for the position because of my difficult schedule.
On a rainy day in Sydney, I was walking back to the train station on my way to meet my friend and I received an email from a familiar name. It was Julia from UMA asking if I could come in for a chat and if I was available Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays or even two out of those days.
I was surprised and shocked at the same time. That same day I was working closely with Acting Cosmo Features Editor, Naomi, discussing how I sometimes have to choose interning over paid casual work. Earning money over working towards my future career.
You see, I am a casual waitress on Thursdays and Friday nights from 5pm-10pm. Taking this new internship would mean giving up earning the money that I rely so heavily on by interning 9am-5pm on those days at UMA.
It seems that PR keeps knocking on my door, despite me trying to venture into other interests, like magazines.
When I arrived back in Melbourne, I went and met with Julia and Adele at UMA. A lot had changed since they had last met me. I now have had six months experience as a PR Account Manager, started interning at Melbourne Storm and had just finished a weeks work experience at Cosmo mag.
My chat went well with UMA and I was asked to organize a skype interview with their HR person in Sydney. I honestly have never encountered a HR interview so I had to think on my feet.
Shortly after I had finished my skype internview UMA’s HR department called me back offering me the position as Universal Music Australia’s newest intern. After some careful consideration and in terms of my career (and bank account) I accepted the intern position.
Interning with such a big organization like Universal Music Australia is such a great opportunity. Having already experienced PR at a boutique firm, I now get to see it on a larger scale and in a more professional setting.
I start this week at UMA and will also continue at Melbourne Storm. So again, I will put magazines on the back burner – and possibly forever. But we’ll see.
I know lots of people are waiting to hear about my experience at Cosmo and I will tell you all about it next week.
I’d also love to give a huge shout out to all the students who read my blog. I hope I’ve helped you in some way. Whether it’s putting you on to an internship, wondering what others do or if a handy piece of advice shared by industry professionals…what have you, I hope I’ve given you that boost to get out there interning.
Sports Media Seminar
Do you know who the AFL’s first draft pick was last year? What about the Wallabies starting Fullback? Is a Test more than just an exam to you? Like the idea of hanging out with Michael Clark, Novak Djokovic and Jimmy Bartel? Then you might have what it takes to be a sports journalist or commentator and this is one exclusive that you cannot miss.
The 2012 Prospect 360 Sports Media Seminar is one of our best yet – to be held on Wednesday June 6, from 6.00pm to 9.00pm at the new state-of-the-art Nine Network Studio, Docklands, Melbourne.
There’s only one thing more competitive than competitive sports and that’s the cut-throat world of sports journalism. Now young people with an eye for sports and a nose for news can get tips on scoring a sports media job direct from working journalists and media professionals.
This rare opportunity gives you the chance to listen and learn; get the tips and tricks, the dos and don’ts from those in the know. Meet each panel member in person, contact them after the seminar and make this your chance to secure a job in sports media.
The line-up is mega. Join Samantha Lane, The Age, Olympic Reporter, The Herald Sun’s Sports Reporter Jay Clark, Nine News Sports Reporter / PresenterClint Stanaway, one of Australia’s most highly regarded and awarded Sports Writers The Age Senior Sports Writer Greg Baum and Andy Maher Breakfast Presenter on SEN 1116’s Morning Glory program, as well as host of Before The Game on the Ten Network who will act as moderator and keep the panel members on their toes.
The seminar will comprise – two informative and interactive 60 minute panel sessions geared towards inspiring participants while helping them uncover ways to get ahead in the super-competitive sports media industry. An opportunity to speak with panel members during the session one and session two break is also provided.
This interactive and inspirational seminar, aimed at young people aged from 15 years will include advice from the panel on applying for full-time, part-time and casual etc. The seminar will close with a Q&A session to give buddying sports journalists the chance to present themselves to the panel and ask questions.
Tickets are on sale now! Visit Prospect 360′s website for more information.
Ogilvy PR’s Internship program looks for enthusiastic, proactive interns with a ‘can do’ attitude, creative ability and great organisation skills in Sydney and Melbourne. The program runs over 2-4 week periods and is an opportunity to jump right in, use your communication skills and work on a number of different and exciting projects in a supportive environment.
The program enables you to gain valuable public relations industry experience, teaches you the dynamics of working as part of a team, improves your career opportunities and helps to improve your confidence by challenging you to do your best. You’ll receive constant feedback throughout your internship as well as formal evaluation at the conclusion of the program. Many of our own team joined Ogilvy PR via our intern program, so as well as providing you with great work experience, it is the perfect opportunity to shine.
Email your cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Location (Sydney or Melbourne)
- Areas of interest within public relations
- Preferred internship dates
Please note under the Fair Work Act Ogilvy PR can only accept students where an internship and formal work experience are a mandatory part of an education or training course. More information can be found on the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.
The Publicist, the journalist, the stylist, and the blogger!
Do you love fashion? Always talking, writing, blogging, or twittering about it with friends? Learn how to fashion that passion into a serious career as a fashion publicist, journalist, stylist or blogger when you attend Sydney’s first ever Prospect 360 Fashion Media Seminar, to be held on Wednesday May 23, 6.15pm to 8.45pm at the Whitehouse Institute of Design, Short Street, Surry Hills.
Join the Publicist, the Journalist, the Stylist and the Blogger – one of Australia’s most in demand fashion panels as they share their tips and tricks, dos and don’ts on how to get your foot-in-the-door of the fashion media industry.
The Publicist, Marie-Claude Mallat is Director of MCMPR – Sydney based boutique fashion public relations agency founded by Marie-Claude in 1996 that represents leading Australian, international and digital brands including Zimmermann, Arabella Ramsay, Yeojin Bae, and Magdalena Velevska to name a few. Marie-Claude is one of the most highly regarded fashion publicists in Australia, don’t miss the rare opportunity to hear what she has to say about starting and surviving a career in fashion publicity.
The Journalist, Paula Joye has worked in women’s magazines for over fifteen years. She has edited CLEO and created and launched both Shop Til You Drop and Madison. In 2011 she launched www.lifestyled.com.au one of Australia’s most popular style sites. Paula also works with Fairfax Media as Metro Media’s Fashion and Style Editor and as Style Reporter for Channel Nine Mornings. Hear what Paula has to say to those interested in following in her footsteps – as a journalist first and foremost – and hear her views on the opportunities that come your way once you’ve mastered the medium.
The Stylist, Nadene Duncan is the current Fashion Director of Stonefox Magazine and a freelance Stylist / Consultant with DLM Australia’s elite agency in the representation of top styling talent. Nadene travels the world and works with famous photographers, models and magazines. Her experience in magazine styling is second to none having work as Fashion Director at magazines such as Shop Til You Drop, SummerWinter, Red Zero, and at Dolly. Nadene is a wealth of knowledge for anyone considering a career as a stylist. Her take on freelance vs. in-house styling cannot be learned in a book or classroom. Don’t miss the opportunity to hear what Nadene has to say on what it takes to be a top fashion “stylist”.
The Blogger, Romy Frydman studied fashion at RMIT in Melbourne more than 15 years ago and interned at Marie Claire Australia for a week. Hear how that one week changed her life. Since Marie Claire, Romy has gone on to work at Elle Magazine, spent five years in New York then returned home to take up a role as the Contributing Fashion Editor for Vogue Australia – which she has undertaken for the past eight years. Last but not least hear how she started her blog Style Me Romy, when most of us were still trying to work out our twitter profiles. Hear from Romy on why she created Style Me Romy – her concept and her vision – on one of Australia’s most regularly resourced and referenced fashion blogs and learn what inspires and motivates her to blog about fashion with passion.
Moderator Anthea O’Connor Fashion Stylist & Fashion Commentator on The Circle, and former Melbourne Editor of Vogue Australia is responsible for asking the questions and making the panel talk!
The seminar will comprise – of two informative and interactive 45 minute panel sessions geared towards inspiring participants while helping them uncover ways to get ahead in the super-competitive fashion media industry. The interactive and inspirational seminar, aimed at young people aged from 15 years will include a session on applying for full-time, part-time and casual positions as well as internships and work experience. The seminar will close with a Q&A session to give fashionistas the chance to present themselves to the panel and ask questions.
Be quick – tickets are limited and you don’t want to miss this one. Tickets are $65 or $75 with a Prospect 360 resource pack crammed with tips, contacts and the dos and don’ts on how to go about securing employment, internships and work experience in the coming year.
Students under the age of 18 years can be accompanied by an adult at no extra charge to the adult.
Purchase more than two Prospect 360 Seminar tickets in 2012 and go in the draw to win a 2013 membership with the Melbourne Press Club (either full membership or student membership depending upon your situation), plus two tickets to the 2013 Melbourne Press Club Quill Awards. Drawn December 1, 2012.
Tickets are on sale now! To purchase visit Prospect 360′s website
Interactive Panel Event Night “How to get that Marketing Job”
Mary Scriva is part of the Emerging marketers Victoria Committee. She has extended an invitation to all My Interning Life readers to come along to her event held next Tuesday 15th of May 2012.
We are holding an interactive panel on “How to get that Marketing Job.” We have some great speakers from Telstra, Gloria Jeans, Grey Group and more, it should be an informative night.
For more information: How to get that Marketing Job Poster
Steve Sammartino, Director of Planning, GREY Group
Rebecca Dalton, Marketing Specialist, Telstra
Melinda Wright, Marketing Manager, Gloria Jean’s Coffee
Fabrice Baucherat, Marketing and Sales Director, Dahlsens
When & Where
Tuesday 15th May 2012
City Convention Centre
Level 12, 300 Flinders St,
SPOTS ARE LIMITED!
Book Now Ph: 1300 737 445 or email@example.com
AMI Members: $20
This article first appeared on The Punch and Melissa has kindly let me re-post it here to share with you on My Interning Life.
Interns: Slaving away for our CVs ’til we’re blue in the face
In this job climate instead of greedily battling for the last cent, many are competing for the first opportunity.
Surprisingly, interns are usually a bit bigger than this guy
Only a short time ago, I was offered my first, official internship position. Conscious of how challenging it can be to secure such roles, I was eager to boast to my family of the accomplishment. The preliminary question and answer session wasn’t of where I would be interning, nor the duties I would be assuming. Rather my elation was met with a unified, “Is it paid?”
Finding a paid internship these days is like unearthing a talented Kardashian. There are plenty of internships, just not a lot of paid ones.
However, due to the proverbial ‘I-can’t-get-a-job-without-experience’ quandary an increasing number of individuals are sacrificing income for a stepping stone into their industry of choice.
Such a high prevalence of unpaid employment arrangements has prompted the Fair Work Ombudsman to launch a meticulous investigation. Two legal experts from the University of Adelaide will inquire into whether companies are taking advantage of a younger generation willing to do almost anything to crack into today’s particularly competitive job market.
Hardly coerced into allegedly ‘exploitative’ positions, fledgling interns fight tooth and nail for that one shot. Simply itching to get their foot in the door, internships facilitate a candid taste of the industry.
And despite what many may believe, these opportunities do possess value. Albeit that remuneration may not derive from digits scrawled crudely on a pay packet, the dividends emerge from the experience.
Within particular job markets, any practical experience that can be foraged ought to be. Especially since the competitive nature of the employment market renders tertiary studies next to futile if not bolstered by bouts of on-the-job learning.
At least that’s emblematic of the media industry. As a student of media and communications, we are continually informed that internships and work experience will be our point of differentiation.
At the end of the day when we’re tarrying at the metaphorical employment stand with our two-dollar degrees and two-dollar youthful enthusiasm, practical placements are conveyed as the certain je ne sais quoi we will want to be sporting.
And having undertaken my fair share of work experience, the skills you acquire are incomparable to that which students are exposed to in the university environment.
Your reimbursement contains reference letters, a sheet full of contacts, and the refreshing outlook that this career path is or isn’t one which you would like to pursue. For these precious employability commodities, an unpaid internship is a reasonable price to pay.
That’s not to discount the real-life horror stories regarding unpaid work. The tale of the young labourer committing a year to a business in the expectation of full-time employment only to leave empty-handed is the potential pitfall.
Unfortunately, the issue of self-regulation arises in response to such tales of injustice. At the most basic level, discernment of when one is getting the raw end of the deal is crucial. Unless you’re able to exploit the employer for all the insider knowledge and advice they can lend, you end up slaving away at the price of your time, rather than at the price of experience.
It is when internships are the mutually beneficial arrangements they were intended to be, that the results are invaluable.
That being said, if the findings from the Fair Work enquiry reveal that paid internships are a legal entitlement, the outcome could be a double-edged sword.
Whilst interns would revel in combining experience with currency, these already limited positions would be severely monopolised. The sheer scarcity of roles could lead to increased nepotism overriding merit when it comes to dictating who attains such positions.
In truth, many companies have the means to provide interns with experience but not with an income. And often it is within these types of institutions that the most in depth learning occurs.
My experience at these smaller workplaces has been extremely positive. In fact, the very character of such companies permits interns and volunteers to explore nuances of the industry in much different ways. It gave me the freedom to make mistakes without fear of reprimand or the hindrance of numeric expectations. I dipped my toes into responsibilities which amateurs would only dream of undertaking. I was rewarded with a portfolio that is continually enhancing in both quantity and diversity.
Perhaps certain regulatory guidelines should be in place to avoid naïve hopefuls being taken for a ride, but by no means is an abolition of unpaid internships warranted. If this is the case, only a minority of us will gain the experience we require in order to truly tackle our future professions.
Eden Cox editor at Executive Media shares her advice for writers on My Interning Life.
1. Know your audience
Get an article brief from the editor and be sure about what they want before you start. Write a synopsis of your article before you begin so the editor has a chance to alter or refine your focus. Get a copy of the publication you’re writing for and take note of the style, language and intended audience; by all means be interesting and fresh in your writing, but don’t go overboard!
2. Proofreading is your best friend
For extra points, ask the editor for their style guide so you can apply the house style to your article (they’ll love you for making their life easier!). Always proofread your article thoroughly before you send it off. There’s nothing worse for an editor than receiving articles full of spelling mistakes and poor grammar – especially when you’re receiving 30 or so such pieces in one day!
3. Writing to the word limit
Make sure you stick to the word limit; it’s likely that the editor has portioned out a finite space for your article in the magazine, and writing too much or too little will cause problems. If you are commissioned to write 1,000 words, that is how much you should charge for, even if your article does end up being a little longer.
Don’t expect too much from your commission. Check freelance charge rates through the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance and accept that you’ll have to work hard for a reputation as a reliable, interesting and competent writer before you can demand big bucks!
5. Handing off your masterpiece
And lastly, don’t be too precious about your work because editors will make changes to it. A magazine is complicated and each part has to work with the other parts, so trust them, and accept that your masterpiece might look slightly different in print!