September 19, 2011 Sam Parker Senior Reporter The Pendulum 130 N. Williamson Ave. Elon, NC 27244 336‐278‐7247 Dear. Ms. Parker: On Oct. 21, 2011, the Elon University School of Communications will host a panel of alumni to speak to students and faculty at the Internship Office’s annual event, Elon 2.0: Success After Elon. The event will take place in Studio B of the McEwen Building, from 2:00 to 3:15 p.m. The School of Communications Internship Office provides internship and career advice to communications and other Elon students. Elon 2.0: Success After Elon will offer students guidance about finding their first jobs, the importance of networking and how Elon experiences can enhance professional careers. Elon University faculty and students who are your readers of The Pendulum would be particularly interested in attending this event, as it will provide useful expertise on how to find jobs after graduation. I am offering you an exclusive interview with Nagatha Tonkins, Director of Internships for the School of Communications. I will follow up with you soon regarding this event. Please contact me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org or 513‐520‐1547 if you have any questions. For more information on the School of Communications Internship Office, please visit the website at http://www.internnetwork.wordpress.com. I look forward to speaking with you soon and appreciate your time. Best, Farley Fitzgerald Media Relations Coordinator School of Communications Internship Office, Elon University Email: email@example.com Web site: http://www.internnetwork.wordpress.com Phone: 513‐520‐1547
100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 19, 2011
CONTACT: Farley Fitzgerald Elon University Relations firstname.lastname@example.org 513‐520‐1547
ELON SCHOOL OF COMMUNICATIONS INTERNSHIP OFFICE TO HOST HOMECOMING NETWORKING EVENT
Alumni Share Career Advise at Elon 2.0: Success After Elon ELON, N.C. (Sept. 19, 2011)‐ As Elon University students embark on the fall semester, they are met with distressing news about the job market and the potential effect on their lives after graduation. The Elon School of Communications Internship Office hopes to calm nerves about the future and offer career advice during Homecoming 2011 with the event, Elon 2.0: Success After Elon on Friday, Oct. 21 from 2:00 to 3:15 p.m. in Studio B of the McEwen Building. At Elon 2.0 a panel of successful Elon School of Communications Alumni will offer career expertise to current students about finding their first jobs, the importance of networking within the profession and how Elon experiences can enhance students’ professional careers. The panel will be followed by an alumni reception in the School of Communications lobby where students, faculty and staff in the School of Communications will network with the visiting alumni. “There has never been a more relevant time for an event like this,” said Nagatha Tonkins, director of internships for the School of Communications, “At Elon, we believe that networking is one of the keys to finding a great career and what better people are there to network with than successful Elon alumni from the School of Communications?” ‐more‐
100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
Elon 2.0: Success After Elon, Page #2
“We are proud to welcome back our alumni and excited to hear the advice they have to
share with our students,” said Paul Parsons, dean of the School of Communications. “Elon University is committed to helping our students obtain successful careers after graduation and it is great events like this that help our university stand out.”
For more information on Elon 2.0: Success After Elon, please contact Farley Fitzgerald at
email@example.com or 513‐520‐1547. About the Elon University School of Communications Internship Office Elon University’s School of Communications Internship office helps School of Communications students find internship opportunities to apply classroom knowledge in a professional work setting. The internship office takes internships to the next level in three ways: all internships are in professional settings, the director is available to help students every day and office is proactive in seeking internship opportunities for students. For more information, please visit: http://www.internnetwork.wordpress.com. About Elon University Elon University is a selective, independent university renowned as a national model for engaged learning, along with excellence in the liberal arts and sciences and professional programs. Elon's beautiful and historic campus in central North Carolina is designated as a botanical garden. Elon was founded in 1889, and its core values have remained constant throughout history: close relationships between faculty and students, a culture that supports constant innovation, and a strong sense of community. For more information, please visit: http://www.elon.edu # # #
100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
Office Resources: • Exclusive internship Database • Weekly internship Hotlists • One‐one internship search guidance Fast Facts: • 89 % of the Elon class of 2011 completed an internship • 67 % of the Elon class of 2011 reported that a career lead came from an internship Our interns are everywhere: • CNN • MTV • Vogue • National Geographic ` • The Food Network • Duke Children’s Hospital
Elon University’s School of Communications Internship Office provides students with a plethora of resources to help communications students obtain a valuable and educational internship experience.
The main goal of the Elon University School of Communications’ Internship Office is to provide valuable and educational internship opportunities for each student. More specifically, this semester, the Internship Office aims to increase awareness among Elon University School of Communications students, faculty, alumni and industry professionals about the valuable resources the office provides students as well as about the networking events the office will be hosting throughout the fall.
For more information please contact the internship office at:
E‐mail: firstname.lastname@example.org | Web site: http://www.internnetwork.wordpress.com
100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
After four years of college, the toughest test for graduates will most likely come after
graduation. That test will be finding a job in today’s economy. With more than five job seekers for every opening and fewer than half of employers planning to hire recent college graduates, the thought of entering today’s job market is terrifying. College graduates are no longer the people most protected from the negative effects of a recession. Over the past four years since the recession in the United States began, unemployment among college graduates has risen to the highest rate since 19702. This is due to the increased competition for jobs in today’s economy. College graduates are no longer competing solely with one another, they are now competing with laid‐off workers, financially strapped retirees and other recent graduates who still have yet to find jobs. The effects of this high unemployment rate include financial and emotional distress coupled with the toll this job market is taking on unemployed graduates’ parents.
In November of 2010, the jobless rate for Americans with at least a bachelor’s degree
rose to 5.1 percent, the highest since 1970 when records were first kept, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics1. And as of June 2011, According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics' Current Population Survey, the unemployment rate for college graduates between the ages of 20 to 24‐year‐olds soared five percentage points from 7.1 percent in May to 12.1 percent in June, compared with a three percent jump during the same period in 20101. The increasing number of people with advanced educations without jobs is ultimately causing the overall unemployment rate to rise. This group makes up 30 percent of the labor force, the single biggest sector, according to Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s analytics2. Government records show there were 2.4 million unemployed people in November 2010 with bachelor’s degrees and higher2. ‐more‐ 1
"Current Population Survey (CPS)." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.bls.gov/cps/>. Rampell, Catherine. "Many With New College Degree Find the Job Market Humbling." The New York Times. 18 May 2011. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/19/business/economy/19grads.html>. 2
Unemployment rates and starting salaries have steadily increased over the past four years as employment rates for recent college graduates have fallen sharply over the past two years. According to a study release by the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University, among members of the graduating class of 2010, only 56 percent had held at least one job by spring 20113. That statistic compares to 90 percent of graduates from the classes of 2006 and 2007 who had held at least one job by the spring after their graduation date3. Starting salaries for those graduates lucky enough to find jobs have also steadily decreased. The median starting salary for students graduating from four‐year colleges in 2009 and 2010 was $27,000, down from $30,000 for those who entered the work force in 2006 to 2008, according to the Rutgers University study3. That is a decline of 10 percent, even before taking inflation into account.
The above figures don’t take into account the long‐term damage the poor job market
may have on recent graduates careers. Many graduates who can find jobs find ones that do not make use of their skills. Only about half say that their first job required a college degree2. Graduating from college in an economy like today’s has a long‐run negative impact on the wages and the emotions of students. "Graduating from college in a bad economy has a long‐run negative impact on wages," says Yale School of management professor Lisa Kahn4. An aversion to changing jobs — which could decrease pay — is one of the reasons that students who graduate in a recession earn less than those who graduate in better economic times. Students who graduate in poor economies often take lower‐level jobs, or jobs that don't fit in with their overall career goals, causing them to lose out on important on‐the‐job training. Graduates are also facing the negative emotional impact associated with being jobless, often leaving students without jobs feeling depressed and confused. According to a poll conducted by the New York Times/CBS News of unemployed adults almost half of those unemployed have suffered from depression or anxiety5. Women were ‐more‐ Rampell, Catherine. "Many With New College Degree Find the Job Market Humbling." The New York Times. 18 May 2011. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/19/business/economy/19grads.html>. 4 Petrecca, Laura. "Toughest Test Comes after Graduation: Getting a Job ‐ USATODAY.com." USA Today. 05 May 2010. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/employment/2010‐05‐19‐jobs19_CV_N.htm>. 5 Luo, Michael. "Poll Reveals Havoc of Unemployment on Workers and Family ‐ NYTimes.com." The New York Times. 14 Dec. 2009. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/15/us/15poll.html>. 2
significantly more likely than men to acknowledge emotional issues. “Everything gets touched,” said Colleen Klemm, 51, of North Lake, Wis., who lost her job as a manager at a landscaping company last November. “All your relationships are touched by it. You’re never your normal happy‐go‐lucky person. Your countenance, your self‐esteem goes. You think, ‘I’m not employable.’ ”5 The hiring drought is also impacting jobless graduates’ parents. According to a poll by CollegeGrad.com, 80 percent of 2009 U.S. college graduates moved back home with their parents after graduation6. That's up from 77 percent in 2008, 73 percent in 2007 and 67 percent in 20066. Although the job outlook is bleak for college graduates, there are steps students can take to increase their chances of finding a career after graduation. For those students still in college, be sure to: Complete at least one internship Internships are the best way for students to get their feet in the door and understand the appropriate way to interact in a professional business setting. • Further, internships are great resume builders and allow students to apply and practice the skills they learn in the classroom in a professional setting. Utilize your resources on campus •
Get to know the people involved in your campus’ career centers. They can help you perfect your resume, cover letter and interview skills. • The career services also have information about job fairs and even job listings available students, so it is good to make personal and lasting connections with the individuals located in these offices. Understand the value of networking •
Utilize professors, internships or part‐time employers to gain connections and recommendations. It is also important to stay connected with these individuals throughout college.
For graduates who are still struggling to find jobs, keep these options open for consideration:
Complete an unpaid internship to gain professional experience Consider enrolling in graduate school Accept a job that doesn’t pertain to your major ### 6
"2009 College Graduates Moving Back Home in Larger Numbers." College Grad. 22 July 2009. Web. 03 Dec. 2011. <http://www.collegegrad.com/press/2009_college_graduates_moving_back_home_in_larger_numbers.shtml>.
http://www.internnetwork.wordpress.com The Importance of Protecting Unpaid Interns’ Rights Farley Fitzgerald The topic of interns in today’s rapidly declining economy warrants closer attention. Mounting numbers of companies are using unpaid interns to replace paid workers due to budget cuts and downsizing. Unpaid internship opportunities in professions like communications; business and law are starting to be recognized as an issue that requires government attention. According to a recent New York Times article, some of these abused interns are lashing out and seeking the aid of the law. Two men who worked on the hit movie “Black Swan” as unpaid interns recently filed a lawsuit declaring that the production company violated minimum wage and overtime laws by hiring dozens of unpaid interns like themselves to replace paid employees. The lawsuit asserts that the production company acted illegally because the company did not meet the federal labor department’s criteria for unpaid internships. The U.S. Department of Labor requires that an unpaid internship position must benefit the intern, the intern does not replace regular employees, the training the intern receives should be similar to what would be given in an educational institution and the employer derive no immediate advantage from the intern’s activities. As a coordinator at the Elon University School of Communications internship office, I completely agree with these criteria. All internships, especially unpaid ones, should serve as a learning experience for the intern. Completing an internship is the single best way to research and prepare for a career. A recent survey by the National Association of College and Employers revealed that 79 percent of employers currently offer internships and 87 percent of new graduates with jobs have internship or internship‐related experience on their resumes. According to the Pew Research Center, recent graduated are part of the most educated, yet most unemployed generation ever. In today’s tight economy, a high GPA and a stellar cover letter will not guarantee graduates a job. Now, more than ever, students need to complete valuable and educational internships that will build their resumes, portfolios and professional networking skills, not teach them how to brew the perfect cup of coffee. One‐way to confirm interns, both paid and unpaid, are not being taken advantage of by employers is for universities to establish structured internship programs. Many colleges are starting to place greater emphasis on hands on learning and some are even enforcing internship requirements to graduate. These supervised programs are the best way to ensure that interns receive a valuable learning experience where they can apply the skills they learn in the classroom to a professional setting. 100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, best practices for internship programs include providing interns with real work assignments, having an intern manager and providing interns with a handbook and/or website. Many schools throughout the nation have instituted programs like these to ensure their students get the most out of their internships. American University and George Washington University both have structured internship programs that enable their students to grow and learn from every internship experience. Both of these schools were also listed on U.S. News top ten National Universities with the highest percentage of graduated who worked as interns during their undergraduate studies. At my university, Elon, the School of Communications requires students enrolled in the School of Communications to compete one credit hour of an internship credit before they graduate. To conduct an internship, students must first register for professional internship‐readiness seminars where they learn vital skills to help them succeed while on‐site at their internship placement. Then, students can enroll in the internship program for one or two credit hours, based on 80 work hours per credit hour at an off‐campus professional site. Students complete work with the School of Communications Internship Director to register for the internship and to document their experiences through a series of guided journals that bridge their academic experience with their internship experience. The school verifies that the work experience was satisfactorily completed with the internship site supervisor. A program like Elon’s could have protected interns like those who worked on the “Black Swan” movie from spending months preparing coffee, taking lunch orders and cleaning the office. Employers, like this production company, who use their interns to replace paid workers, should have to face legal consequences. Hopefully, lawsuits like these will help bring employers to a higher standard of treating their interns and ensuring the internships they provide offer students a positive educational experience. In order to avoid future problems with interns, universities should consider restructuring their internship programs to protect their students from encountering a negative internship experience. 100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244
INTRODUCTORY/REFLECTIVE WRITING ASSIGNMENT: PART A – INTRODUCTORY PARARGRAPH The purpose of the Elon University School of Communications Internship Office media kit is to educate and inform Elon University students and journalists about the office’s resources and events as well as the general benefits of completing an internship. In addition, the media kit aims to provide comprehensive, interesting and sufficient information about the internship office to persuade journalists to report on the office in local media. This media kit is intended for journalists at The Pendulum, Elon’s student run newspaper, because they write for the most widely read and distributed print publication on Elon’s campus. Specifically, this media kit is intended for Sam Parker because in the past she has written many other articles regarding Elon University’s career services as well as other events involving alumni the university has hosted. I tried to make all of the content in the media kit relevant to Elon students by relating many of the pieces to today’s poor job market and how the internship office’s resources can help students land careers after graduation. PART B – REFLECTIVE PARAGRAPH I focused my environmental scanning for the creation of the Elon University School of Communications’ Internship Office media kit on sources that discussed the benefits of completing internships while in college. I reviewed several different sources for environmental scanning purposes including articles from USA Today and The New York Times as well as reports from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. From the USA Today article, I learned about the emotional impacts that being unemployed can cause recent graduates as well as information about how internships can be beneficial and give recent grads a leg up in today’s volatile job market. The New York Times article I referenced provided unemployment statistics for college recent college graduates compared to those statistics in previous years. Finally, the reports I referenced from the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics provided credibility to unemployment statistics from recent years as well as the past. The primary lesson I learned through the creation of this media kit is that research is vital in order to create a successful campaign and media kit. Research is essential in each step of the process from getting background information on your client to determining target audiences to selecting a relevant journalist to pitch the kit. Although I feel that I conducted thorough research throughout the writing process of this media kit, next time, I feel I should conduct further research before starting the kit, possibly using primary research tactics like a survey or focus group to gain more information about my target audience. 100 Campus Drive | McEwen 112 | Elon, N.C.| 27244