Grow Professionally with the Hottest Internship in Town
Ever wonder what it would be like to intern with the Dallas Arboretum? I spent the summer interning with their Marketing and Public Relations team, and I am here to spill the dirt about my experience.
There’s a stigma around the word “internship.” People think of interns going on coffee runs for bosses or interns spinning around in chairs bored or superiors dishing out mind-numbing projects to a college-aged kid.
That is not the case at the Dallas Arboretum.
Starting an Internship at the Dallas Arboretum
Walking through the doors on my first day, I had no idea what to expect. I thought I might write press releases, take a few breaks in the garden and maybe make a social media post every once in a while. I was pleasantly surprised that I stayed busy my entire day and was not ready to leave when 4 p.m hit.
This internship program does a remarkable job letting interns taste all sides of the job and experience many different projects. I crafted press releases, emails, media uploads, calendar uploads, media reports and social media content. I designed a few graphics in PhotoShop and InDesign. I even learned a couple new software programs–Constant Contact and Cision.
The Workplace Environment
The largest learning curve for me fell on the data end of work. I analyzed our social media numbers and built charts and documents to make the information coherent. Then, the data would be compared to past quarters, which was really interesting to study. The environment here is very collaborative and encouraging, so they actually took my suggestions and made notes of my analyses, something that has been rare for me to find in the internship world.
They also invited me to take the lead on my own projects and blogs; it’s an amazing feeling to see your name published online. I took projects into my own hands to revamp the Pinterest and to make a blog with a social media focus, tied into a social media contest to drive traffic to Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and the Arboretum’s own website.
The physical environment is the real perk of the job–free garden walks and admission to summer events like the Cool Thursday Concerts, Garden Gigs, Family Fun Fridays, the list goes on. It makes up for the unpaid part of the position. They are flexible with hours and working part-time, too.
But, the absolute best part of interning at the Arboretum is the work atmosphere. The people are unbelievably nice and made me laugh out loud everyday. And, people are more than willing to discuss TV shows–for me it was “The Bachelorette” (I needed to debrief it with someone). It’s fun to listen to all of the conversations and laughter that fills the small office. I never grew bored.
My confidence bloomed during this internship. I learned how to think critically and speak my mind. My bosses’ encouragement and feedback planted new ideas I could carry to future PR and marketing positions. And, I know they’ll be rooting for me no matter where I end up.
Yes, They Have AC
In case you were worried about summer heat, fear not. I was comfortable inside an conditioned office. And I didn’t do a single coffee run.
The Dallas Arboretum offers the hottest internships in town, so check out these opportunities: Public Relations, Digital Marketing, Group Sales, Fundraising/Development and Accounting. There’s even a special internship open to younger applicants in the Education department every summer–read more about it here. No matter which field you dive into, I know you will dig you’re Dallas Arboretum internship.
Dallas-native Meredith Hessel is a junior at The George Washington University studying Journalism and Mass Communications and pursuing a minor in Peace Studies and Conflict Resolution. She spent her summer working with the marketing department at the Dallas Arboretum as a digital marketing and public relations intern. Please, feel free to contact her with any questions about her experience at firstname.lastname@example.org.