407 miles from Ohio to Philly.
23.7 miles to my internship, and another 23.7 back “home.”
407 miles back to Ohio.
79.5 miles to Pittsburgh for my best friend’s wedding.
326 miles back to Philly.
And of course the odds ‘n’ ends miles I put on running errands.
That is a snapshot of what my last two weeks have been like since completing my second semester of the Columbia College Chicago Journalism, MA program.
Sounds crazy, but hey, you gotta do what you gotta do.
Yes it gets lonely, and yes spending the majority of my time in a car isn’t exactly what I had in mind to kick off my summer, but the great moments that happen in between each trip have made the experience more than worth it.
I’ve mentioned more than once in my previous blogs that what you put in is what you’re going to get out. It’s up to you to take the initiative and make the most out of every situation and opportunity.
While I did not foresee my summer being spent in Philly, thus far it’s been a great experience, and one that has been a fairly smooth transition. I’ve been able to apply what I’ve learned in Columbia’s Journalism MA program to my summer internship position in the Fox affiliate’s sports department.
Although I did not foresee my path taking me to the East Coast, I went in with a positive mindset—something I recommend to anybody in a similar situation. Go into every endeavor with an open mind and have the determination to make the most of it. And of course, as mentioned in my last blog, enjoy life and take time for yourself.
For me, I’ve gotten to finish out my second semester of the program, visit my family, see my friends and stand next to my best friend on her special day as she said “I do” to her high school sweetheart and love of her life for the past seven years.
The few days of free time I’ve had in Philly, I’ve spent with my current roommate and friend exploring the city. I’ve also started planning future mini trips to cities and baseball stadiums that I want to go to while I’m out here because as I’ve quickly come to realize, Philly is in a prime location to get to various other states and cities in a relatively short amount of time.
As for the internship so far, it’s going great. My advice – ask questions, take initiative, don’t let the fear of hearing “No” hold you back from branching out and pushing yourself. Be a sponge—you’re there to learn and your department is there to teach, so use that to your advantage and soak it all up.
I’m only entering my second full week of the internship so I’m excited to see what else is in store for me as I continue on this journey.
As for my blog, here are some parting words of advice until next time.
Don’t ever discount opportunities because they weren’t exactly what you had in mind—you never know what they could bring you not only during that experience, but also in your future career.
Expand your market experience by applying to internships in different locations. You can get a feel for the differences between larger and smaller markets, network and make connections in various parts of the country and start thinking about where you might like to see yourself end up.
Internships give you the opportunity to “test the waters” in your chosen career without fully committing to a long-term job. Whether you love your internship position, or just certain parts of it or not at all, the overall experience is key in helping you shape where you want to end up in your future.
You never know until you try it—internships are the “real world” version of that saying.
Once you get in the groove of what your internship position entails, then branch out and explore the other departments contained within the company. Just because you were hired by one specific department or in one position, does not limit your ability to try out and get familiar with the other offered departments. Make your internship somewhat of a “one-stop shop” experience by branching out. You may not be interested in a certain department, but still spend some time there because you’ll either come out surprised that you enjoyed it, or reassured that you do not want to pursue that later in life.
Just remember that no matter where the path may lead, there is a reason behind it and you need to go with the flow and make the most of.