The PR Internships Awards 2016 are now open for entries, the latest step in the PRCA and PRWeek’s broader campaign to improve standards and recognise quality internships. There are two categories: Best Internship Programme, and Best Intern.
The awards conclude the joint PRWeek/PRCA PR Internships For All (PRIFA) initiative, which was launched in 2014 to lead a concerted drive to bring more young people from diverse backgrounds into the PR profession at entry level.
All 40 of the organisations that have participated in the 2015/16 PRIFA initiative may now enter the awards for free. For organisations that have not participated in the campaign there is a charge of £70+VAT per entry.
Francis Ingham, PRCA director-general, said: "With the PR Internships Awards, we are delighted to give the future of the PR industry the recognition they deserve. The work that we do with PRIFA is now in its second year and it has grown from strength to strength since it launched. We now have 40 organisations who are committed to paying interns and diversifying their talent pool."
John Harrington, deputy editor at PRWeek, said: "With recruitment and retention of talent such a key challenge for the industry, the PR Internships Awards are a great way to signal the sector's commitment to developing talent at the grassroots - and are helping people take their first steps on the career ladder."
Shortlists will be announced on Monday 6 June. Those shortlisted will be interviewed by a panel later that month and the winners will be announced at a ceremony in London on 7 July.
The PRCA and PRWeek’s focus on quality internships has also included the Intern Campaign, a commitment made by PR agencies to paying interns the National Minimum Wage or more. The PRCA also published its Intern Guidelines in 2013.
Transport for London won the Best Internship Programme award at the first PR Internship Awards last year. Kharis Brooks, who interned at Vodafone, was the winner in the Best Intern category.
How to enter
Entries must be sent to Internshipsawards@prca.org.uk by 5pm on Friday 27 May. Organisations that currently take part in the PRIFA scheme do not have to pay – check here to see if your organisation is involved. If you do not take part in PRIFA, there is a charge of £70+VAT per entry, and this can be organised over email.
Best Internship Programme
Both PR agencies and in-house teams may enter by providing an outline of their internship programme, which should be no more than 600 words in length. This will be judged based on the following criteria:
• Programme planning and structure
• Support and activities engaged in by the interns
• Diversity of interns
• Number of interns
• Retention and evaluation
• Remember: all internships must pay the National Minimum Wage or more in order to be entered for this award.
To enter an intern for this category, the intern must complete an outline of their internship, which should be no more than 600 words in length. The intern’s line manager is also required to complete a 300-word endorsement. Entries are open to anyone who interned between 1 May 2015 to 30 April 2016, and they do not need to currently be an intern. Entries will be judged based on the following criteria:
• Enthusiasm and dedication
• Innovative and creative approach to their role
• Contribution to team morale and ethos
• Ownership of projects
• Remember: all interns must be paid the National Minimum Wage or more in order to be entered for this award.