Tuesday, January 15, 2013

I knew there was a reason a volunteered in the first place

On the first day of orientation at the U of W, we were overwhelmed with information about our program. Some of the information said stuck with me to this day, one of which was volunteering. We were advised to take advantage of any opportunity that may interest us in the PR field. Enriching opportunities that may one day become more valuable in our future careers.
Even though some of us chose not to take that advice. I, on the other hand, embraced every opportunity that came my way. To the point where I wasn't sure if I could handle the load.

But here I am, I made it through.
Throughout the volunteer experience, I have learned a lot of tricks and tips that I have taken with me at the start of my career. That being said, the volunteer work that I have done has allowed me to develop long lasting relationships with the organizers.

Another benefit to volunteering, other than the obvious feel good experience. Referrals. References. It looks good on your resume. Employers are interested in candidates that are willing to volunteer in the industry, so work like you are getting paid.
It's easy when volunteering to lose the importance of the experience. You may get wrapped up in other things that may seem more important, whatever that may be.  The ideas is to schedule your work like you would any other job, or appointment.

Recently, I have had the opportunity to reconnect with the individuals that gave me the opportunities that I have had.
That said, interning is also something you may want to consider. Not only  did I get more experience, but I now work for the company for which I interned. It may not happen to every student intern, but in the end, it is the experience that counts more than the end result.

I have received the best advice at the beginning of my career; embrace it, enjoy it, and never take your experiences for granted.

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