For years, our agency has prided itself on a valuable, hands-on, dynamic internship experience. But like every other business trying to continue its operations, things have looked a little bit different for the last two intern cohorts.
We asked our spring interns to document their time at The Hodges Partnership, which started with glee, was met with a bombshell and ended happily (and safely) from home. For our future interns out there, here is the first-person account of Anna and Chris.
“The day had finally come. After re-reading the welcome email, reciting the door code so I wouldn’t forget it, calculating my travel time and changing at least five times, I was ready for my first day at Hodges. February went by quickly. Every day I was learning something new while building upon the skills I had previously learned in my classes at VCU. Initially, I was surprised by how much responsibility I was given – pitching, writing blogs, building media lists. With the pressure of turning in quality work, I was able to sharpen my skills while gaining a newfound confidence.” – Anna
“I still couldn’t believe they accepted my application. Me, a mess, interning for one of the most reputable PR agencies in Richmond? I walked in and was greeted by remarkably friendly people. I hit the ground running, but despite my overwhelmingly supportive new co-workers, it was difficult to shake the feeling like my work wasn’t up to par. Fortunately, over time my misguided intimidation of my coworker’s expertise faded and their frequent reassurance helped me to realize that I wasn’t doing so bad. Asking for feedback has been the key!” – Chris
“Four weeks from my first day, and I was finally getting used to my new routine, taking 18 credits, interning at Hodges and waking up before 10 a.m. (Editor’s note: can we go back to the days when waking up after 10 a.m. was even an option?!) Even though I was swamped, I always left Hodges with a smile on my face and a fire in my step. Any project that came across my plate, I accepted knowing that every opportunity needed to be seized. I was pouring myself into my work. But, walking into the office on Monday, March 16, I was overwhelmed with a sense of melancholy since this was the last time I would come into work before going remote. While this was scary at first, Hodges turned lemons into lemonade.” – Anna
“March rolled around I was finally getting a grip. Figuring out how to view the internship as a learning process helped me get into the swing of things. Facing new challenges everyday like pitching to journalists to being the media liaison at huge events (with legendary celebrities), energized me for a future in PR. Things were going really well, and I was slowly getting to know my coworkers and my co-intern/newfound pal, Anna. I was having a great time experiencing the daily life of a PR professional. Then, BAM, COVID-19.” – Chris
“As the pandemic unfolded, millions of Americans have filed for unemployment. Thankfully, the only thing that has changed during this stay at home order is the location of where we work. While I miss my little desk, Hodges manages to provide the normalcy I crave. Even though we aren’t physically in the office, my supervisors have made themselves very accessible. At the beginning of this internship, I didn’t know what to expect. It’s been roughly three months, and I have learned so much. The Hodges Partnership has given me confidence in my work I never thought possible. This internship has been one of the greatest learning experiences that will help me transition into a field that I am so passionate about.” Anna
“I won’t lie, watching the economy dip into a recession and people filing for unemployment right before you’re about to graduate is difficult. And adjusting to working from home has been a challenge of its own, I miss the office. I am incredibly lucky that Hodges has kept me busy, doing work for clients during the pandemic has opened my eyes to the world of crisis communication. My experience at Hodges has given me the skills I need to start my career, despite any roadblocks I might encounter.” – Chris
If you’re interested in interning with us, apply here. We collect applications on a rolling basis for fall, spring and summer internship positions.