“It always seems impossible until it is done.” – Nelson Mandela
Throughout my college career it has been drilled into my head, along with every other college student, how important it is to have internships before you graduate college and start your post grad life. To me, I didn’t think it would ever be possible because I just could not figure out what I wanted to study and I didn’t know how to be successful at something like obtaining an internship. Believing I could not do the work to be hired for an internship was the only thing holding me back from doing it. I was literally the only roadblock in my way; nothing else was.
This past school year I actually started enjoying my classes and I was confident in what I chose my degree to be in. At that time, I realized that if I did work hard enough in school, and I networked enough with people in the Public Relations and Marketing fields, I could one day have an internship that I could turn into my career. This confident boost is what has now led me into the most rewarding adventure I have embarked on thus far.
These past couple weeks have been extremely exciting in terms of how I want to grow into my career. On Monday July 10th I started my internship at Ozarks Food Harvest as their Public Relations intern. This means I am on the Development and Communication team at OFH.
To put everyone on the same page, Ozarks Food Harvest is a Feeding America food bank that serves all of southwest Missouri. This includes 270 hunger-relief organizations across 28 Ozarks counties. OFH provides more than 15 million meals to over 260,000 people across these counties. It is truly an honor to be involved in their mission.
The first week of my internship had a lot to do with me learning the ins and outs of the organization and exposing me to what each team does on a day-to-day basis. I really enjoyed this because I did not realize how little I actually knew about Ozarks Food Harvest and how much of a reach it has when it comes to feeding southwest Missouri.
I was also included in meetings for planning some of our Hunger Action Month events that we host all through the month of September. This was especially exciting to me because I have always been a planner and I love planning and hosting events, parties, showers, and anything that involves a crowd of people.
The particular event that I got to attend the meeting for was for Iron Chef, which will be this year on Saturday, September 23rd. This event consists of local chefs who will be asked to prepare three dishes which highlight a unique market ingredient. The chefs will be judged on their dishes by a panel of judges and the people that are attending the event.
People who attend will be able to taste a sample of each dish and vote for their favorite by making a cash donation. All proceeds will support Ozarks food Harvest as a part of Hunger Action Month. Seriously though, you all need to attend. What can beat receiving free food while also giving back to charity? Oh that’s right: nothing.
My second week, which is the one we are in right now, has been a huge learning experience as well. It has shown me just how much I love this job and has confirmed my beliefs that choosing Public Relations as my career is what I was born for.
On Monday of this week, part of my day consisted of interviewing one of OFH’s volunteers and writing a story on them that we call the “Volunteer Spotlight”. I absolutely love writing, so being in charge of this specific piece for our newsletter and website was especially exciting. By the way, we have some incredible volunteers who give multiple hours of each week giving back to our organization and making sure people in the Ozarks are not going without fresh, healthy food.
As the week progressed, I got to work a lot in OFH’s WordPress. (yay!) I was given the task to upload their stories and pictures, that will be in this months Harvest Times newsletter, to their blog. I also learned how to create e-mail campaigns that we send out to close to 10K people to promote stories of what is happening in our company and community. We also create campaigns to advertise events and opportunities that are coming up at OFH.
Overall, these past couple of weeks have been very exciting and I feel like I have learned so much in my short time at OFH so far. To wrap up this post, check out my awesome cubicle I get to work in. Also, shout out to my team who created the super cool welcome poster in the back.