My big break into PR fell suddenly into my lap. It was the summer after my sophomore year in college. I needed a job and my friend's sister needed an intern. It seemed like a good match. She worked in a small agency that dealt primarily with big real estate brokers and banks in New York.
So for $8 an hour, 40 hours a week, I spent the next 10 weeks there.
The job was basically non-stop. A small office is really great for a hands-on experience, but it also means that you feel like you're doing almost everything. I covered clerical and administrative duties, proofed press releases, helped out at events we organized, and pitched to journalists. It was a tough and busy summer. I definitely gained exposure to the PR world, but I was quite sure that I wouldn't pursue it after college.
Upon graduating, I saw that I had lots of work experience, but in very diverse fields, so I applied for all sorts of jobs, but my PR experience is what landed me at the small Upper East Side travel agency where I now work.
I love it here. The office is more relaxed and I'm more comfortable with my job. For anyone thinking about pursuing a career in PR, I'd highly recommend an internship. It could lead to a great future.