Department of Writing
When I decided to get an internship, I wasn't sure where to look. I started by talking to Gina Delapa, the GVSU internship coordinator for liberal art majors, discussing possibilities. She helped me polish my resume, and encouraged me to attend a writer's panel, telling me of one woman in particular who I should talk to, because she thought that the company would be a good fit for me.
After the formal panel set-up was concluded, I went to talk to the woman that Gina had told me to, but because there was a line to talk to her, I talked to Keri Larsen, a recent GVSU grad who was also on the panel and not talking to anyone at the moment. She works as an event planner at Saint Mary's, a faith-based hospital in downtown Grand Rapids. When I told her that I needed a writing internship, she told me that she knew a position that was open, and if I emailed her my resume and contact info, she would pass it on to the woman who was in charge of the program.
The next day I emailed her my resume and she passed it on to Jeanne DeBruyn, who emailed me and set up an interview. I came into the interview dressed professionally, a few minutes early, with a portfolio of writing samples ready to show. They were all well designed pieces I'd done for real world clients, not just word documents that showcased my writing skills. I think this was what convinced them to give me the job because every piece I had I could intelligently discuss in relation to the hospital and how they would help me in that setting. Jeanne and Lauren, the woman who I closely work with told me that I had the position, but that I would need to go in for a doctor's appointment in the Occupational Health department, and talk to Human Resources. What they didn't tell me was that I needed to be interviewed by HR, so I went in wearing jeans, thinking I was just signing a form or two, but thankfully was wearing a nice top, not a hoodie or something. I was really surprised, therefore, when I was called back to Julie MacFarland's office and another woman joined us with copies of my resume in hand. Thankfully my resume only has projects and positions I am proud of, so I was able to talk my way through the interview and continue to the doctor’s appointment. I spend a lot of time in the actual hospital, which is why it was important to make sure I wasn't spreading a deadly contagious disease…or something.
In my position I am in charge of the weekly eNewsletter, and a staff writer for both the monthly internal news magazine, Within, and the quarterly newsletter, Within Oncology. In addition I will be composing a grant.
I would advise fellow students looking for internships to attend as many networking events as possible, and also to make sure that their resume and portfolio is ready to go and well done so that they are ready when opportunity is presented.
Page last modified April 5, 2007