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Snap, Tweet, Post: Interns Put Their Social Media Skills to Work
Jaclyn Leduc ’18 admits she wasn’t that interested in social media before she started an internship helping to manage Bentley’s social media accounts. Today, however, she’s hooked; and that’s a good thing. As a content marketing associate at 3Play Media in Boston, Leduc writes content for the company’s blog and manages its social accounts – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and LinkedIn.
“The social media skills I learned during the internship helped me stand out in the interview process,” she recalls. “It improved my communication, writing and organizational skills, all things that apply directly to what I do now.”
Leduc says she got more out of her internship than learning to craft a good Tweet or Snapchat story. “One of my top takeaways was finding my independence. My supervisor always had confidence in me and believed I was fully capable. That translated into me learning to believe in myself and really strengthened my confidence.”
Jennifer Wright ˊ16 was a social media intern at Bentley and currently runs her own digital marketing consulting business. She says the internship provided just the right balance of guidance and independence. “My manager was great about letting interns take ideas and run with them, encouraging us to do research so we could present aspects like timeline, cost and which platforms to use. She was there to answer questions but gave us autonomy.”
Wright admits that while she came to the job with a love for storytelling, she needed to work on the visuals to complement her writing. “I wasn’t naturally a great photographer but now I had this opportunity to practice that and video editing, too.”
Wright recalls one of her favorite projects at Bentley: creating a "24 hours at Bentley University" video. A Bentley tour guide at the time, Wright says she wanted to paint a picture of the diversity in events, clubs, sports and everyday activities enjoyed by Bentley students. For the project, she designed a storyboard and recruited students to do the filming.
“Basically, I filled every hour for 24 hours, from 4 a.m. to 3:59 a.m., with something a student was doing on or off campus. I included video from both the Relay for Life and Earth Fest, an off-campus internship, students going on early morning runs or working late-night shifts in the Student Center and more.”
Wright edited and compiled the student-submitted segments into a single video that drew more than 5,000 views on YouTube and thousands more on other social media platforms.
That kind of information sharing is what inspired Sharon Cho ˊ20 to get involved as a social media intern in Bentley’s Marketing and Communications Department. A committed follower of Bentley’s social media accounts, she knew that if she couldn’t attend an event, she could still experience it through online updates. And she wanted to make sure other followers did, too.
“I think most students feel as though helping with social media is a very intuitive job, but for me, I've gotten a lot of hands-on learning experience,” Cho says of her internship. “It is precisely because we use social media so much that it's difficult to jump out of that zone because running an organization’s social media account can be very different from running your own.”
That hasn’t slowed Cho down. At the university's 2018 commencement ceremony, she worked through the crowds to snap photos of the graduates, their friends and families. “It was especially heartwarming to be surrounded by so many heartfelt embraces and to capture those images.”
The tricky part about working with social media? According to Cho: “You have to be everywhere, and you can’t be shy about it. I noticed these two graduates adjusting their cords and stoles, so I asked if they wanted to be on the Bentley Instagram story. I was surprised to see that not only did they accept immediately, they also tried to coordinate the shot with me!”
Cho knows that whichever career she pursues after graduation will likely involve social media. “Social media has become such an intricate part of companies that wherever I end up with in my career, I am bound to use social media for work. Especially with my interest in events marketing, the entertainment industries and media arts, social media is crucial in those aspects of marketing.”
Leduc says the hands-on learning she undertook as a Bentley undergraduate prepared her for her current role at 3Play Media. “I feel super lucky to have landed at an amazing company and believe my role in the Marketing and Communications office at Bentley helped to set me up for this great opportunity."
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