As an intern, it can be an intimidating thought to be working with people who have had years of experience. But, it’s one of the most exciting times. You are discovering what you want to do and building confidence in your work.
As Arm Candy’s first interns we (Carly and Maya) were so excited to be able to help Arm Candy grow alongside us. Together, we learned the importance of how a summer internship can help build both personal and workplace skills. We put together the five most important skills that we both took away from this internship.
1. Most learning comes from hands-on experience
Often, “intern” is associated with performing minimal tasks. However, my job as an intern could not have been farther from minimal. Each project brought new knowledge of the industry and a more in depth understanding of how many roles come together to create one final output. I built a reporting document, a data studio report for the Arm Candy website, a media content plan, managed various intern projects, assisted in building a keyword list, as well as many other meaningful and mutually beneficial tasks. From every project I was able to assist on or spearhead it contributed to my knowledge of the various platforms that are used, and knowledge of the media agency industry.
Here is an example the media plan:Toy-Company-X-I-Media-Plan-1
I was so excited to spend the summer interning at Arm Candy because I knew that my designs would be impactful and used to grow the brand. I was able to work on projects that ranged from web design to making banner ads to creating handbooks. I enjoyed having so much creative freedom to build up Arm Candy’s branding. Some of my favorite projects I worked on included the social playbook, t-shirts, billboard mockups, and the employee handbook. I loved being able to be so hands on in every aspect of design and experience the fun, but sophisticated brand of Arm Candy.
Here is a sample of the employee handbook:
Here is a sample of the social playbook:Copy-of-Social-Playbook-Presentation
A few samples of some work for clients:
And lastly, my favorite thing to work on was creating AC GIFs:
2. Problem solving skills
When I would come into an issue where I wouldn’t know how to calculate a metric, I would first consult google and figure out what makes up the metric and what it does. The research that went into this type of problem solving allowed my knowledge of the topic to increase, and help with future projects.
Design involves a lot of problem solving. It’s a process where you have to keep in mind the smallest of details but also make sure that the big picture is not getting lost. During my internship I would do a lot of problem solving by trying to understand if what I had created was cohesive to the brand I was working on, but unique enough to refresh or update it. I did a lot of brainstorming and research on how to elevate the design, which helped me not get stuck on one idea.
I learned this skill especially when I designed Arm Candy’s Advertising Creative:Untitled-presentation-1
The skill of adaptability is crucial when being thrown into any unfamiliar situation. My adaptability skills were tested with the rise of COVID-19 cases. While we began our internship working in the office, as the number of cases rose, we all adapted to working from home. Keeping constant communication through the various changes have been key to maintaining a stable work environment, and staying on top of tasks.
Working for a small agency, I quickly learned how to shift from one project to another without getting stuck. For example, I would be working on designing a blog post in the morning and completely shift to designing t-shirts in the afternoon. Learning how to roll with the changes based on deadlines is crucial to being successful and not feel overwhelmed. Another big hurdle that I had to face was working from home during the COVID crisis. It was easy to be in communication with everyone throughout the day even if we weren’t in person.
Here is an example of what I would work on within a day. In the morning I could be designing display ads, and by the afternoon switch to posting a case study on our website.
During my internship, I assumed several different responsibilities. This taught me to stay on top of my work and accountable for completing tasks. One responsibility I had was to keep up with the AC instagram and the other AC social media channels.
Here is an example of the AC instagram feed I helped curate:
Responsibility was essential to this internship. A big responsibility that I learned was managing my time and understanding how I would have to spend each day efficiently. This was essential because when I was working on client work it needed to be finished on time so the campaign could start. It was also important when I worked on internal work because things such as blog posts, would need to be posted on time.
5. Part of the team
From the first day of work, I was instantly a part of the team. There was never an awkward “newbie” period. The entire AC team made me feel as though I had always been a member of the company, and this has remained true throughout my entire internship. One example of being a part of the team that stands out to me is having my headshot included in a slide titled “Our team.” I’ve loved getting to know every AC team member, and learning more about their roles within the company.
I can confidently say that the Arm Candy team made me feel at ease right away. From the first day I knew that it was going to be the start to an amazing internship because of everyone’s enthusiasm. Even though we were separated most of the internship and not able to be physically together in the office, I always knew that I could reach out to any of them with any questions. I loved being part of such an amazing team and it was awesome to see their smiling faces each day (even if it was on my computer!)
All in all, we’d give this internship 5 stars! With a supportive community from the Arm Candy team, we’d suggest the AC Internship Program to all students pursuing a marketing-focused career.