Media & Communications

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Roles and Work Environment

Many industry sectors encompass media and communications functions, from education and research, to public relations, advertising, publishing and digital media. Media and communications professionals gather and process information and create and disseminate informational or persuasive content, in the form of writing, images, video, and more. Media as an industry can also encompass business roles involving finance and business development.

Below is a sampling of roles you might find:

  • Blogger
  • Copywriter
  • Foreign Correspondent
  • News Anchors
  • Editor
  • Multimedia Journalist
  • Public Relations Manager
  • Media Planner

Below are some additional resources to find opportunities:


Skills and Training

  • Computer
  • Digital Media
  • Information Management
  • Mechanical/Manual Dexterity
  • Organization
  • Public Speaking
  • Research
  • Writing

Industry Timeline

The recruitment timeline in this industry is based on position vacancy, but there are some entry-level programs and internships that have more regular deadlines each year. The following examples are internship programs for students interested in the media and communications field.

T. Howard Foundation

The T. Howard Foundation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and advancing diversity in the media and entertainment industry. The organization chooses a pool of the brightest college sophomores, juniors, seniors and graduate students to recommend for internships across business functions with some of the largest media companies in the world. The application usually opens in early September. The deadline for the summer and fall internship programs is December 1st.  The spring internship program application deadline is October 31st.  

Emma Bowen Foundation

Founded in 1989, the Emma Bowen Foundation connects promising students of color to internships and advocates for best practices in hiring, retention, and advancement in the media and technology industries. The Emma Bowen Fellows Program provides multi-year internships to students of color at media companies across the country. Each student works as a paid summer intern for each summer following their selection as an Emma Bowen Foundation Fellow through their college graduation. The deadline for its summer internship program in early October the previous year. 

Publicis Multicultural Talent Pipeline Forum

Multicultural Talent Pipeline Forum is a program developed by Publicis Media. It is an annual educational immersion into the media, marketing, and advertising business, bringing multicultural students from participating colleges and universities to Atlanta. The deadline to register the professional forum is usually in early October each year.


Find Opportunities

On-Grounds

Off-Grounds

Internship Platforms for the Media and Writing Industries

  • Mediabistro: While this platform doesn't seem to have a large volume of internship listings, it could be helpful for students who are looking for internships relating to a career in writing, graphic design, social media, etc….
  • Ed2010: Ed2010 is exclusively for those looking for writing or editing opportunities.
  • Hindsight Project
  • Collection of career wisdom provided by experienced professionals across creative fields with an emphasis on advertising, design, media, public relations, publishing and production. For folks entering the industries, seeking to move up, or starting their own business, these stories are wisdom and advice not available anywhere else.

Applying and Interviewing

Resumes and Cover Letters

Your professional resume should address skills needed in your desired field and special accomplishments or results-oriented tasks you performed in previous work.  Depending on the specific job function you hope to fulfil, those skills might include:

  • Critical Thinking
  • Creativity
  • Leadership
  • Broad Content Knowledge
  • Ability to Improve with Feedback
  • Savvy with Technology

(SNAAPShot 2013)

When it comes to choosing a format, some arts or media organizations may be more tolerant of design-heavy resumes that use color, graphics, or otherwise veer from the traditional one-page resume.  Keep in mind that, regardless of the field, hiring managers are more interested in quality content (what have you done?) than visual appeal.  In fact, some employers view non-traditional resumes as a tool for masking a lack of experience. Don't let this be you! Use work samples and your online portfolio to show your design skills so you can keep your resume content-focused.

Interviewing

Many of these companies are moving to using screening tools instead of conducting first-round phone interviews.  This means that you may be asked to complete a short video interview to submit after your resume is received.  Some video interview systems allow you two chances to record and submit your answer, whereas others only give you one chance.  For this reason, we recommend you practice using InterviewStream. Interview Stream is an invaluable tool available to all UVA students that allows you to practice video interviewing and review your responses to improve your answers. You can also submit your interview answers to a counselor for help. Practice makes perfect and this is a great tool to start building your comfort and communication skills.

PR Test

Writing is an essential skill in Public Relations.  For that reason, a writing test is a standard part of any PR interview.  Interviewers may ask you to write a press release, create a social media post, or complete a multiple choice grammar/writing exam, all within a specified period of time.  In these cases, details matter, and practice can also help.


Additional Industry Resources

Blogs and Industry Research

Professional Associations

More to Explore

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