Tag Archives: Ryerson University

May05

Landing The Job: Marie Alcober

1098038_10153178729605160_2066378516_nOnce you land your dream internship, where do you go from there? Many students take on internships with the hopes of coming out with a job. Although it’s never a guarantee, there’s always opportunity to put yourself out there and get noticed. Recent Ryerson University journalism graduate Marie Alcober shares insight into how she went from an intern to a web producer at the Business News Network (BNN).

Tell us a bit about yourself:

I’m a curious, fly-by-the-seat-off-my-pants kind of girl. I don’t shy away from new things and I’m not afraid to admit that I know very little. That’s what’s so great about the journalism industry. I get the opportunity to meet smart people and learn from their expertise everyday.

How did you first land your internship with BNN?

To be able to graduate, I had to complete an internship program during my fourth year at Ryerson University. The only goal I set for myself, really, was to do an internship that would really put me out of my comfort zone. I figured that this was my last chance to try something different before going into the “real world.” Initially, I had planned to do reporting in the Philippines, where I thought I could test my resilience. But when that didn’t pan out, I thought of the second hardest type of journalism that I thought I could never do: business. So I emailed my internship coordinator and she gave me a contact at BNN. I emailed the network’s executive producer and got an interview in two weeks.

What attracted you to this company?

The fact that it’s the only TV channel in Canada that focuses only on business and finance news. It’s a great place to have an immersive learning experience because you don’t get pulled into different areas of news.

What skills did you learn during your internship?

I learned to actually read reports—cover to cover. Journalism school teaches students to listen for “juicy quotes” but a lot of reporting is simply poring over documents. Surprisingly, in most cases the more interesting points are only glossed over in page one. You’ve got to dig deep.

How long did you intern with BNN?

Six weeks.

What was the most valuable thing you took from your internship experience?

When you throw yourself into a situation knowing that everything about it will be new and unfamiliar, it sort of gives you a sense of self like never before. That’s probably the most valuable thing I took from this—a self-assurance that I can dip my toes into all sorts of new and unfamiliar endeavors and not be afraid of them.

How did you turn your internship into a job?

The truth of it is, I simply asked. I let my supervisor know that I would make myself available for them if they ever need any help. I asked if I could stay on as an intern, so I could get the hang of everything, in case they needed someone to fill in during the holidays.

What role do you have within the company now?

I’m part of BNN.ca‘s web team. I edit and post videos and wire stories to the website. I also write mini-articles that go along with interview segments. Basically, I help make sure that the television segments are translated into web content that’s hopefully valuable to both the core BNN viewers and the wider online audience as well.

What advice do you have for other interns?

Don’t pretend like you know it all. The veterans will see right through you. And besides, it’s easier for you to absorb your surroundings when you let yourself become a blank slate.

Apr24

Intern Spotlight: Kailey Sibley

pName: Kailey Sibley

Intern Position Title: Social Media for CBC Olympics and Hockey Night in Canada

Company: CBC Sports

Location: Toronto

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

I’m a tiny sports fanatic living in downtown Toronto. I’ve recently finished the Radio & Television Arts program at Ryerson University, and am working my way into the world of sports broadcasting. I can tell you anything you need to know about the Stanley Cup, loose-leaf tea, and Orca Whales. I’m a huge fan of a good goal celebration, 4th-liner jerseys, and a solid playoff beard.

Can you tell us the steps you took to land this internship?

I actually applied to do a shot-listing internship for Hockey Night in Canada. I had to send in my resume and cover letter around four times before I was contacted for an interview. The interview was terrible. I was told I would never get to actually watch any sports during the internship because I’d be too busy getting coffee for people and running up and down the stairs. I asked if they had any writing and social media internships available. I was told no. A month later they asked me if I would do a writing and social media internship for the Olympics. I said yes, obviously.

What attracted you to this company?

CBC Sports is the pinnacle of sports broadcasting in Canada. I grew up watching Don Cherry and Ron MacLean on Hockey Night in Canada every Saturday night. The opportunity to be a part of the CBC Sports team during the Winter Olympics was too good to pass up.

What skills did you learn at your internship?

I now speak in 140-character bursts.

Could you describe what a typical day was like for you as an intern?

The Olympics were a crazy time on the CBC Sports floor. We had an awesome social media team working 24 hours a day, every day from Day -1 of the Olympics, to Day 16. As soon as I arrived for my 8 a.m. start, I was updating Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, Google+, and YouTube constantly. Covering hockey was my main focus. I would sit and watch every single game, live-tweeting them from one account on my phone and another on my laptop. I feel like I didn’t look up from my screen until the night shift arrived to take over social media duties!

What was the most challenging part?

The first time I tweeted a mistake. Everyone always says, “It’s okay to make mistakes.” When you’re representing a major corporation on social media, it isn’t okay to make mistakes. Always quadruple-check your work!

Most memorable moment?

Live-tweeting the men’s gold medal hockey game on the CBC Olympics and Hockey Night in Canada accounts. I literally skipped into work at 5 a.m. that morning. It was like Christmas for me. This is closely followed by the time I got to have a slice of Don Cherry’s birthday cake.

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment:

Exciting–there’s always something happening there.

What advice do you have for someone who is just starting to look for an internship?

Be persistent. Know everyone, and make sure everyone knows you. Never be that person everyone sees around but no one actually knows who you are. Offer to work on your days off. Dress for the job you want, not the one you have. Even if everyone else is in jeans, if your boss dresses up, you should too. Try not to yawn in front of your employers. Be enthusiastic about everything. Never apologize for doing your job. Triple-check your work…then check it again.

Who do you look up to in the industry?

My boss, Monika Platek. She does everything from writing, to social media, to on-air work. I swear she never sleeps.

What is your dream job?

Anything that involves talking about sports into a microphone.

Nov26

Get Involved On Campus

Amongst the hours you spend in classrooms listening to lectures and in the library buried in books, there is so much going on around campus that you might not be aware of. If you don’t take the time to see what’s out there, you could be missing out on some very cool and exciting opportunities. This goes for interning as well. In addition to searching for off-campus internships, getting involved on campus can be incredibly beneficial. Not only do you get to meet and collaborate with people who share your interests, but you also get the chance to learn valuable skills that you can take with you even after you graduate. We found a few students who are making the most of their time on campus. They shared their experiences with us and gave insight into what they’re learning along the way.

 

1394877_10200916929759878_601871716_nAndreia McLean, Wilfred Laurier University

“I am very actively involved in my campus’s Greek Life. Specifically in my own sorority, Alpha Phi, I serve on our executive board as the Panhellenic Delegate, bringing news from other sororities. I also oversee the recruitment process for all of the sororities on my campus.  I also serve on my campus’s Greek Council; a council of the Fraternities and Sororities on campus that cooperate to put on events to benefit different philanthropic initiatives, as well as socials to help unify us as a collective.

I’ve served in many different positions throughout my four years at Laurier, mostly in the recruitment or event planning departments, but this year has been my most involved. The skills I have learned in each of these roles are invaluable in the real working world. Recruitment has taught me how to sell anything from a product, to a group of people, to a lifestyle. And planning socials for the entire Greek Life community on my campus has taught me how to organize on a large scale, work with many different people, and plan and execute a successful large scale event. The skills I have learned through my leadership roles in Alpha Phi, Panhellenic, and Greek Council will be a great assist in finding, maintaining, and thriving in a working position after university.”

 

Raeniel Holgado, Simon Fraser University1420338_10153459231115328_1100437799_n

“At SFU, I am heavily involved with Enactus SFU. Enactus is a student-run organization that creates several entrepreneurial-driven projects to tackle various social issues within the community. In particular, I project manage a financial literacy program called “Count on Me”, which instills basic financial literacy skills to youth at-risk to inspire them to build a more sustainable future.

As a Project Manager, I learned a lot about managing a team and to hold every single member accountable. Another key take-away from my experience being a project lead is that time is your worst enemy. Hence, it’s pertinent to set S.M.A.R.T. goals to ensure you accomplish tasks in a timely fashion.”

 

Sam RNTS PicSam Sim, Ryerson University

“I’m involved in the Ted Rogers Management Conference (TRMC), Ryerson University Finance Society (RUFS) and the Ryerson Speech & Debate Association (RSDA). This year I’ve really gotten involved in the business community at Ryerson, especially with student groups. I’ve learned so much about marketing, management, team building and strategy from working on these teams. These are all skills you can’t just learn from reading a textbook. It’s much more effective to put them into practice.

There are so many other areas and industries I can take my journalism degree, besides just being a reporter. My interest ultimately lies in business and so being a part of these groups is not only allowing me to pick up useful business skills I can put on my resume, but an opportunity to explore all different industries to see what I’m passionate about.”

Jul30

Intern Spotlight: Hilary Taylor

DSC_0049Interviewee Name: Hilary Taylor

Intern Position Title: Planning Intern for AnnTaylor.com

Company Name: ANN Inc.

Location: New York City, NY

Tell us a little bit about yourself:

As a fourth year Retail Management student at Ryerson University, I have worked from the retail floor to the head office, soaking up every learning opportunity along the way. I am a passionate and driven student who is inspired by being told that something isn’t possible, or that I can’t do it. Hearing those words heightens my motivation and pushes me to my limits. Retail is what excites me, but I’m someone who finds happiness in accomplishments. I love finding a great deal while I’m shopping, running for an extra minute or mile, working that much harder. My passion for retail expands past the classroom, as I am the president of the Retail Students Association next year, and returning back to work at LOFT in the Eaton Center when I get back to Toronto. My eagerness to learn sets me apart from my peers, and I am continuously searching for new books to read, articles to share, advice to take and experiences to embrace that will further me in my career and my character.

Can you tell us the steps you took to land this internship?

ANN Inc. actually came to Ryerson and did a presentation about the internship for fashion and retail students. After the presentation I approached one of the presenters and told her how amazing the opportunity seemed, that she’d be hearing from me and gave her my business card (and now that I know her well she said I made a good impression by doing that and she remembered me). The application was pretty extensive (it was offered on the ANNLOFT careers page) and I worked with our career counselor to perfect my resume. A recruiter from ANN actually called me to set up an interview before I submitted my application and to this day I’m not sure how they got my phone number without my application (it’s not on my business card!) — but we set up an interview, I submitted my application and completed my interview via Skype. A few days later, they called me and said I got the job! I then had to complete a bunch of visa paperwork and try to find an affordable apartment in NYC, which turned out to be a more difficult task than the actual application. For the month of May I offered to work at LOFT in Yorkdale (this was something I offered during the interview process to set myself apart from other applicants) in order to get a taste of the company culture, and a better taste of the Canadian market: a job to which I will be returning in September.

What attracted you to this company?Screen Shot 2013-07-30 at 11.08.14 AM

ANN Inc. has a great company culture. It’s all about women understanding women, and creating product for women. I really liked that and it is definitely something that I can relate to. Internships in retail planning are also very hard to come by in Canada so I jumped at the opportunity—and obviously the location played a big part in the decision!

What skills are you learning while at your internship?

I have learned so many things during my time in NYC and at ANN Inc, both personal and professional. I’ve learned a lot about working with people, and when to keep my mouth shut! I have learned so much about the retail business and how customers can tell you so much about the positives and negatives of your business. My excel and math skills have definitely improved as well.

Can you describe what a normal day is for an intern at your company?

I work a LOT on excel! A LOT! I consistently work on mini projects, analyzing metrics to make business decisions. For example, I will look at current under-performing products (based on retail metrics like stock to sales, inventory count and gross margin) and decide on appropriate markdowns. I am in charge of keeping the team up to date on certain metrics that change every day and updating certain methods of communication. I also update several spreadsheets where we are testing different things and how the customers react. For example, we test different “free shipping” amounts to see which amount the customer resonates with best. I sit in on really interesting meetings with company executives, which is a really great experience to be able to watch them in action. The internship program hosts lunch and learns, where we hear from one company executive at a time about their experiences and advice for us entering the workforce. We are also working on a project with other interns so I am in charge of creating short term and long term plans for our new business and forecasting dollar and unit sales. All of these things make up a typical day!

Give us one word to describe your workplace environment:

Feminine.

What advice would you give to someone just starting to look for an internship?

Show your eagerness to learn and your passion will also shine. One common piece of advice I’ve heard is that your passion shines through when you’re not trying to show it (or else it comes off fake). Also, don’t be afraid to set yourself apart. Yes, it may be awkward going up after a presentation to hand over your business card, or to speak up about something that is unique about you, but that’s what makes you memorable and brings you to the top of the list for possible hires.

What do you do to fill the inspiration gas tank?

I have a blog full of pictures that I find all over the Internet. If I had the time I’d love to have a blog with pictures that I’ve taken…but maybe when school is done. The pictures are of outfits that I love, and that I think encompass my style. I love seeing new ideas of ways to wear the clothes I already have! I also love quotes and song lyrics. I’m one of those girls that writes every single quote and lyric down that connects with me and any time I’m having a bad day or just looking for a little pick-me-up, I go back to that list.

What’s next for you?

I return to Toronto in three weeks and start getting ready for school! I am the president of the Retail Students association at my school this year, so I am already starting to get ready for a crazy year. I’m hoping to move into a job in retail planning or allocation when I graduate. My ideal places to work would be Winners or HBC, but who knows! I may end up back in NYC.

What’s your dream job?

My dream is to become the CEO of a large retail company (like Bonnie Brooks!) but to move up at a company through the buying/merchandising path. I’d love to be a DMM (divisional merchandise manager) and oversee the bigger picture of buying for shoes, accessories or handbags. (I’m an accessories girl all the way!)