The PR Internships Awards 2017 are 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.
All 40 of the organisations that have participated in the 2015/16 PR Internships For All (PRIFA) initiative may 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: "The PR Census 2016 revealed that the PR and communications industry is 91 per cent white and 89 per cent British. The industry cannot continue to ignore this issue and must do more to ensure we are recruiting the brightest talent from diverse socio-economic backgrounds.
"On the bright side, there are several organisations in the industry that are making important strides in this area. The PR Internships Awards is a great opportunity to recognise these employers and to reward the best young talent in this industry."
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."
The deadline for entries is Friday, 26 May and the shortlist will be announced on Monday, 5 June. Those shortlisted will be interviewed by a panel later that month and the winner will be announced at a ceremony in London on 6 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.
Golin won the prize for Best Internship Programme at the PR Internships Awards 2016, while Kate O’Donnell, who spent time at Hotwire as an intern, won the Best Intern category.
How to enter
Entries must be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org 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 2016 and 30 April 2017. 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.