My Interning Life has moved

We have moved! You can now find us at


Aubrey’s Australian Hockey League Wrap

Hi everyone,

I know it’s been a while – I’m currently in the process of updating My Interning Life and making it a fully fledged website.

This blog post originally appeared on Bowling Maiden’s Over a blog dedicated to Australian women working in sport edited by Michelle Cooling. 

Hockey Victoria hosted the Under 13 Boys National Championship and the Men’s Australian Hockey League at the State Netball Hockey Centre (SNHC) in Melbourne from September 27 until October 5.

As Communications Coordinator it was my job to handle all of Hockey Victoria’s social media platforms, website and keep the hockey community up to date with the events we were hosting. I had a number of tasks given to me by Hockey Australia and to give me a hand I also sought out an intern to help me during the tournaments.

I tried to seek out media opportunities for the competition and the Victorian Vikings (AHL), however, ran into a lot of roadblocks. The main and most obvious one was the fact the competition ran at a similar time frame to the AFL Finals series. Of course, in Melbourne, AFL is always priority number one. I received many emails from media outlets that read, ‘Thank you but we’re just in AFL mode right now.’ It frustrated me that I couldn’t get any additional major media coverage and focused my attention on more local publications such as Leader Newspapers, which worked quite well.

george bazeley

I’ve been employed at Hockey Victoria since July and it’s been a really different experience. I haven’t worked at state level before after having experiences working at Melbourne Storm (intern), Netball Australia (maternity contract) and very briefly at the Essendon Football Club (intern).

The amount of hockey events in our calendar is insane. Hockey doesn’t appear to have an ‘off season.’ Or at least nobody told hockey that it needs a break.

I’d survived junior and senior winter grand finals but I knew that the joint tournaments of the U13s and AHL would be a whole other beast. As well as the events we hosted there were eight other national events on at the same time around Australia. I knew that I’d really have to be on top of everything, not just the events we were hosting.

During the tournament I was mainly stationed in the media box overlooking one of our pitches at the SNHC with my intern, Sean Munaweera. I would cover the U13s and Sean would do the AHL.

Our days went relatively quickly as everything was broken up into 30 to 35 minute halves. I’d arrive half an hour before the first U13 game at 8.30am then the match would start at 9am, half-time at 9.35am, full-time at 10.20am and then to go downstairs and collect the match report and so on.

The AHL would be timed to start half an hour after the U13s matches got underway. I’d then write my U13 match reports and send the release to hockey communications and events contacts. I was also updating Hockey Victoria’s social media platforms and website throughout the day with results and photos.

The AHL was a bit different as we only had an hour after the conclusion of the last match to file and send the media release out. As the Victorian Vikings (AHL) usually played the last match of the day, Sean and I would head down to the bench at half-time and report from there.

I’d venture around the pitch taking photos, instagraming videos and updating Twitter. Sean would also conduct post match interviews with some of our Vikings players. We’d then head back into the office and send out the media release, update the website and social media.

I’d get home at about 8pm and would be in bed by about 9.30pm ready for the next day’s competition. I know I sound like a grandma but if I didn’t put myself to bed I would’ve passed out on the couch from being so tired.

During the eight days of competition (two rest days), I worked out that I had watched roughly 48 hockey matches. That’s at least double the amount of AFL matches that I’ve ever been to. It’s fair to say, I’m all hockey-ed-out.

But it doesn’t actually stop there as my CEO signed me up for the International Super Series Hockey 9s in Perth at the beginning of my employment. I leave for Perth next Tuesday and will spend six days over there. I’m looking forward to having a bit of a break even though I’ll be working as media centre manager for the event.

I’ll be working with Hockey Australia staff as well as other communications and events employees from other hockey states. It’ll be a good experience to work with new people and at an international event. I’m extremely lucky to have been put up for it.

As I mentioned before, hockey is a different beast compared to most sports in Australia. I think I actually feel more for our athletes purely because of their intense schedule. They  will have been involved with winter competitions, AHL and the upcoming International Super Series, Oceania Cup, World League and Junior World Cup – all before December 15.

Internship: Cricket World Cup 2015

Media and PR Internship

ICC-Cricket-World-Cup-2015-LogoFourteen countries spanning one fifth of the world’s population will compete for it. Hundreds of millions will view it. And just one team will make it happen. The ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 is cricket’s premier flagship event, which will be jointly hosted by Australia and New Zealand in February and March 2015.

To ensure the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 sets a world class benchmark in sporting event delivery across the two nations, we are building a Local Organising Committee in our Melbourne (Australia) and Wellington (New Zealand) offices who will shape this world-class sporting event throughout the full lifecycle.

We now have an exciting Internship opportunity for a PR, Communications or Journalism student to join our team and help make the Cricket World Cup a reality! This Internship will provide a meaningful opportunity to learn about the communications (Media and PR) and community engagement involved in the planning and implementation of a major event, as well as an understanding of our organisational function and program activities.

Within this Internship you will support with the following:

  •  Develop content for digital assets and traditional media
  •  Complete research to support media advisories, bios, reports and other initiatives
  •  Read and identify media clips from clipping services and on-line resources
  •  Assist with the monitoring and reporting of a wide range of coverage
  •  Assist with compiling databases for community groups, cricket associations and venues to activate our community engagement strategy
  •  Assist with the preparation of media, stakeholder and community engagement materials (including newsletters, presentations etc)
  •  Update media and stakeholder lists

To be considered for this fantastic opportunity you must meet the following criteria:

  •  Currently studying PR, Communications or Journalism (minimum second year)
  •  Exceptional verbal and written communication skills
  •  Experience writing and editing on a wide range of platforms (with strong attention to detail)
  •  Understanding of Public Relations principles (including building media and stakeholder lists)
  •  Strong understanding of the digital space including Social Media
  •  Advanced MS Word and Excel ability, and a practical problem solving approach

Overall we are looking a positive and team focused attitude, and the ability to show strong initiative. You should have exceptional organisational skills, and the ability to juggle conflicting priorities within a high pressure major event environment.

To apply for this opportunity in this truly global event please send a Cover Letter (addressing the key criteria) and Resume in one document to We will be considering applications as they come in, so please apply in the first instance.

Download the PD here: Cricket World Cup 2015 – Media and PR Internship

Intern Profile: Alison Coffa

alisoncoffaAlison Coffa is a 20-year-old who will soon complete her Bachelor of Arts degree at Deakin University. At her internship with Pesel and Carr, Alison has been able to have a more ‘hands on’ experience. Alison also credits interning with helping her have more confience in her ideas and abilities.

The Basics

Alison Coffa, 20, Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communications) majoring in Public Relations and Journalism at Deakin University.

Dream job?

I haven’t quite figured that one out yet, but if I could combine my passion for communications and the media industry with my love for music, theatre and the arts, then I’d be pretty happy.

Tell us about your internship at Pesel & Carr

I’ve been at P&C for six months now, gaining an insight into life in an agency and working with a variety of clients on a whole range of different projects. From media relations, to copywriting and collateral development, to publicity campaigns, to investor relations, and to visual identity projects, I’ve had a chance to experience many different aspects of the industry within the one company.

What do you do on a daily/weekly basis? Being an agency, it is hard to describe an average day because every day is so different. First thing in the morning, I catch up on my emails and sort out anything that urgently needs to be worked on, then turn to my trusty ‘to-do’ list. I picked up a habit from a colleague at P&C to have a running list on a notepad that I just add to and change around as I need. This allows me to coordinate tasks that run over multiple days in the office. Some of the regular tasks that happen more frequently are media monitoring of the major daily papers, internal account meetings and keeping up to date with industry news. Other activities can include anything from compiling media lists, writing media releases, following up inquiries to journalists, attending events, client meetings, writing copy for websites and collateral material, coordinating third parties like designers and photographers, and administrative tasks like meeting reports and campaign evaluations.

Pesel & Carr is a small firm of around seven employees, have you found it beneficial for you as you’ve gotten to be more ‘hands on’? Definitely, I really believe that a major reason my internship has been so beneficial is because I’ve been able to have such practical experience in my time there. This is my first internship and I’d heard horror stories from students at other companies doing nothing but photocopying and coffee runs for weeks on end, but from the outset P&C made me feel welcome and like a valuable member of the team. I’ve been able to work on real client projects and more recently I have even been able to take responsibility for some tasks myself. The smaller staff group at P&C has also helped me in developing really positive working relationships with the others.

What has been the most valuable learning experience you’ve had while interning at Pesel & Carr? It really is difficult to narrow it down to one event as the most valuable. I think simply the experience of being in a firm and experiencing the daily ‘ins and outs’ that happen in the office is a major learning curve. Studying PR can only teach you so much about developing key messages, writing in a professional style and preparing media releases, but it’s not until you experience it yourself that you realise – sometimes the journalist doesn’t answer the phone. Sometimes no one responds to your media release. Sometimes some major news breaks the day you’ve sent your release out. There’s a lot that can just happen in the daily life of a PR practitioner that you don’t really learn until you come across it.

I can say that I’ve probably developed more than anything a greater sense of confidence in my own abilities and ideas as I’ve successfully called journalists out of the blue and arranged media opportunities, crafted my own media releases and seen them have an effect, or seen my own ideas come into fruition in a campaign. Uni has helped prepare me

in a theoretical sense for the industry but the practical skills and ability to apply this theory has really only developed since I’ve been working with P&C.

Tell us about your volunteer position at Theatrepeople maintaining their social media channels: Theatrepeople is a national website based around the Australian theatre and performing arts scene; posting audition notices, show reviews, feature articles, photos and videos from professional and amateur theatre companies. I came on board with Theatrepeople in 2011 as Communications Manager. My role involves the upkeep of the Facebook page and Twitter account, and since I’ve been working with them, the Facebook page has gathered around 3,000 more followers (reaching over 11,000 total). Engagement has always been key with the Facebook group, and many of our posts revolve around asking questions of our followers and starting discussions between them. The Australian amateur theatre scene in particular is very community focused so it is great to see people making connections and having real discussions and debates over relevant issues on the TP Facebook page.

What’s next for you? Will you do more internships? I finish my degree this year (seven weeks of classes left) so at this stage I’m not entirely sure what next year is going to entail. I will probably be job searching from this point but I won’t rule out another internship if a good opportunity presents itself. Over the last few years, I’ve been working a number of jobs as well as interning and uni, so I’m hoping that whatever next year brings my way, there will still be some scope for flexibility and variety.

Alison gives her intern advice:

You just have to keep your eyes and ears open and put yourself out there. It’s tough, but the truth is that there are probably quite a few students in your course, so anything you can do to differentiate yourself from your classmates will put you in good stead for the future.

Go to networking events (and talk to people), take a short course, read industry news, write a blog, or volunteer in something completely unrelated to your degree! I’ve been doing a lot of this in 2013 in particular, but I often wish I’d started earlier.

Also ensure you have the basics sorted. Employers in communications are always on the lookout for strong writing skills, so find any opportunity you can to practice and hone your writing – especially if there is the potential for publication. Writing an article for your uni magazine shows you can fit a brief, work to a deadline and put together a coherent piece – and it also gives you something to add to your folio when someone asks you to bring a writing sample to an interview. 

Follow Alison on Twitter.

Classroom vs industry: top 5 things you cannot be taught at university

When I began working at Hockey Victoria in July, my CEO told me how he encourages his employees to get out the office and meet with contacts.

internshipSo that is exactly what I’ve been doing for the past month or so. I’ve been around town meeting with exisiting and new contacts within the media industry, picking their brain about their job and getting their advice. This has been overall a good and a bad thing. It’s been great getting out of the office and meeting with like minded people, but it’s been overwhelming when I think about how these contacts have a team and resources behind them.

At Hockey Victoria there is no team. I am the team. ‘There is no I in team’ but in this case…I am the team.

Which brings me to a coffee catch-up that I had with a new media industry contact. It was a meeting that made me reflect on several things on the drive back to work, one was how I really needed to stop doubting myself and to give everything I had to this job. Another crucial point that was brought up in our conversation made me reflect on what the classroom doesn’t teach you.

University doesn’t teach you how to have a thick skin, how to handle an angry client or stakeholder, how to react when a sports person tells you to f*** off in the changerooms, or what to say to a family who are grieving the loss of a loved one during a death knock.

How do you learn the most crucial parts of your career and your day-to-day tasks? Industry experience teaches you these things. Internships get you out of the classroom and into the real world.

I’d love to know what you think are the top five things that you cannot be taught at university.

Alison is studying a Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communication) at Deakin University. Alison tweeted me her top five things that she believes cannot be taught in a university classrom, and I agree wholeheartedly with this list.

1. What happens when the plan/theory you’ve learned just doesn’t work due to something unplanned.

2. How simple day-to-day operations go.

3. Working as part of a team is NOT the same as a group assignment.

4. Dealing with difficult or aloof clients/suppliers/journalists. People management and negotiating skills.

5. Media follow up, making contact with journalists, cold calling and phone manner.

What do you think? Do you agree with Alison’s top five things you cannot be taught at university?

If you’ve got a different top five to Alison, please comment below, Tweet MIL or me and/or tell us on Facebook. I’d love to hear the things that you learnt while interning that you simply cannot learn at university.

Talking Total Sport wants YOU!



TTSDo you have a love for sport and lifestyle?

Talking Total Sport is looking for sport and lifestyle writers to join our team to cover these hot topics.

Do you enjoy writing and want to cover some of the biggest topics in Australian sport and lifestyle?

Whether it NRL, Hockey, Swimming, AFL, Netball, Cricket, Yoga, Running or even Clean Eating tips, we want you to join our team today!

Please email your interest to with a copy of your resume and which 3 sports or lifestyle topics (in preference order) you would like to cover.

Whether you are an aspiring journalist or a qualified student, we would love to hear from you.


Internship: Retro Press

Retro Press is a letterpress, print & branding studio based on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

We are looking for a dynamic intern to work along side our Studio Director and Branding Specialist.

You will gain experience in all elements of the marketing mix by working with our branding clients in the fashion, beauty & lifestyle categories. You will also be involved in the preparation of the marketing strategy for Retro Press and the tactical implementation to drive the business particularly in the wedding & event industries.

The studio is a small yet dynamic environment with a real collaborative hands on approach.

To find out more about the marketing experience of our studio director feel free to visit We are looking for someone for one to two days per week for a minimum of three months to commence as soon as possible.

Send application through to

Applications close 18th August

Confessions of an intern

Check out the August issue of Girlfriend magazine to read the article, ‘Confessions of an intern’ which includes the interview Claire Starkey conducted with me.

Read part one and part two.


Facing Your Fears

By Stephanie Hume.


To lead a rich and fulfilling life we all must push the boundaries on our comfort zone. However, to lead a life that pushes our level of comfort is no easy feat. At times it’s difficult to push yourself to do things you’ve never done before. Why? It makes us feel uncomfortable and vulnerable. However, in my experience, you stand to grow the most with experiences that push your limit and prove you’re far more capable than you give yourself credit for.

As an intern, and in your career, there will be countless moments where you’ll have to face a fear to achieve a goal. For myself, that has been enrolling in a public speaking club to overcome my fear of public speaking so I can be a better communicator. For others, it could be throwing yourself into a new work experience you know nothing about, learning a new skill or even simply attending a networking event alone to expand your professional contacts.


Below we’ve outlined what strategies can be used to face your fears:

–  Keep a glass jar of experiences you’ve courageously overcome and that you are proud of. This way you have easy access to past personal wins that will help you to boost your confidence when tackling new challenges.

–  Remembering that anxiety is natural and normal to all living beings. You don’t have to like it, however, no one has died from feeling uncomfortable.

–  Take a piece of paper and write down what your fears are. When they are written down it removes the fear from inside you and in my experience proves to me why I’m feeling anxious and that it’s okay to feel the way I do.

–  Understand that failure is apart of learning. When we were younger and we learned to ride a bike did the amount of times we fell off affect our desire to ride? I highly doubt it. We wanted that experience so bad we were willing to fail 1000 times to get there. Remember this next time you fail on the journey to your goal.

–  Acknowledge the goal or fear you need to overcome and the steps you need to take to achieve it. I sometimes make the mistake of seeing the goal I want to achieve and forget it is made up of components. By breaking the goal down into achievable steps, I’m more able to reach it and less likely to let fear get in my way.

– Write down your core values to lead your life. By taking the time to do this, life decisions are not ruled by fear or anxiety. If something like taking a new work opportunity is apart of your values, anxiety isn’t able to make a winning case to change your decision.

– Take up the challenge. The biggest waster of time in achieving goals is worrying, stalling due to anxiety and getting caught in the, ‘what if this happened…’ cycle. Courage breeds courage, so the more you say yes to things and push yourself outside of your comfort zone, the more opportunities you’ll take up.

–  Finally, you have to remember everyone experiences bursts of anxiety and fear in going after their dreams.  It makes it much more bearable when you realise fear is all apart of the pursuit of a career we want to have.


What other strategies would you add to the list?

Wishing you all the best in overcoming fears in your own life.

Where are they now? Kahla Spooner

When we first met Kahla Spooner she was a “self confessed coffee addict, fitness freak and loves a spontaneous adventure.” Kahla had completed several PR internships across a variety of organisations. Two years on, Kahla tells us in her own words, about her journey finding a job and the pathway she chose that lead her to landing her current job as Community & Social Media Coordinator at Fernwood Fitness

Where are they now? By Kahla Spooner

It seems like a lifetime ago when I was last interviewed for MIL but what a journey the past two years have been! Unlike most interns, I didn’t transition from University to the industry immediately; instead I have worked my way up the corporate ladder. After graduating and completing my internship with Milk PR in 2011, I found it extremely challenging breaking into Communications/PR world – even with the amount of practical work experience I had behind me, instead I opted for an alternative route.

With a passion in health and fitness I applied for a basic sales role at my local Fernwood club and within a few weeks the National Sales Manager (at the time) got a hold of my resume and called me in for an interview. During the interview stage she told me that I was over qualified for the role and promptly created a new role for me. She took me under her wing and two-weeks later I started working full-time as a National Sales Trainer with Fernwood.

With a strong desire to grow with the business and learn as much as I could, I remained committed to my role embracing and learning anything and everything that would assist with my professional development. I was fortunate to work throughout VIC, NSW and SA undertaking sales training with teams from all departments. Within a few short months my role advanced, moving into management followed by operations training and club development.

When I was working in clubs, much of my focus was based on local area marketing, cross promotion opportunities, sales training, implementation of policies and procedures, networking and brand management, all which I found to be extremely beneficial enabling my communications and PR skills to shine. The growth over this short period allowed me to learn a lot about my own capabilities and the experience truly shaped me for the better; expanding my skills and qualifications further than I would have ever imagined.

After almost two years working for Fernwood, a career opportunity arose in the Marketing department in our National Support Office. Wanting to always revert back to my communication roots, this deemed a fantastic opportunity to utalise my extensive knowledge of the business and apply for a role that nestled perfectly with my qualifications. After a three-stage interview process, I was successful and am now currently working as the Community & Social Media Coordinator for Fernwood Fitness (so yes, I actually work on Facebook and Twitter every day).

Sounds like a pretty sweet gig, right? Well it is and I honestly I can’t complain, Fernwood is a great company to work for, but managing social media platforms can actually be more challenging than many people think. My day-to-day tasks involve managing our main Facebook pages, overseeing and moderating our other club pages, managing posts for our Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest feeds, content creating, community engagement through our internal forums and social media sites, utilising analytics and insights to measure growth and performance, media monitoring, managing online campaigns and competitions, providing excellent customer service and staying abreast of new trends. Working in our head office also means I’ve had the opportunity to be a part of projects in other departments like working on-site for video and photo shoots, which is always so fun!

My advice to others taking a similar road to me is to always remember the path that you’re on. Taking an alternative route can back-fire as many people can get caught up in the financial gain of a job opportunity, get complacent and lose sight of where they started in the first place. For me, I always knew the direction I needed to go, so while I may have taken a couple of turns along the way, I ended up exactly where I wanted to be. For now this is a fantastic opportunity to learn and grow from great mentors and industry professionals and I’m looking forward to all the amazing possibilities to come.

You can follow Kahla on Twitter and read her internship post here.